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PostPosted: July 23rd, 2012, 10:50 am 
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Hey there,

I'm booked to start the Bowron Circuit on Monday, taking a rec kayak which has proved sufficient for several multiday trips. But I don't want to be forced to unload hatches and pack a pack at every portage to meet the Bowron 28 kg in-boat weight limit.

I don't think I'll have much trouble keeping my gear weight under 28 kg, but have read various online reports that parks staff don't count PFDs, paddles and what not in the 28 kg.

Anyone have recent first hand experience?

(I'll phone the park but will probably get a person in a call centre rather than in the park itself).

Thanks!


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PostPosted: July 23rd, 2012, 11:02 am 
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Location: Burns Lake, BC
They don't count all the items you would need for a safe paddle.
This would include your PFD, paddles, throwbag/floating line, and bailer/pump.

All that being said, over several trips we've learned that we can add to this list. Those items have now included a tarp, hatchet, pegs, and misc. rope, and our first aid kit.

Every time is different but that's the general idea. Depends on who's helping you.

Have fun!


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PostPosted: July 25th, 2012, 9:19 am 
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Location: Lethbridge, Alberta Canada
Just back from the circuit last week.

They don't weigh any of the kayak stuff. The weight limit only applies to canoes.
I guess they figure a person can only fit so much in a kayak anyway while people will attempt to stack coolers and all manner of stuff in a canoe


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PostPosted: July 25th, 2012, 10:13 am 
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Thanks for replies. Phoned yesterday and they said they'll exempt paddles, PFDs, first aid, and, bizarrely, water.

Makes sense about waving through the kayaks. We're the sports cars, canoes are the pickup trucks (grin).

Finally, Mark, do you have any up to date info on conditions (portages, etc) at Bowron from your trip?


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PostPosted: July 25th, 2012, 12:24 pm 
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Joined: November 12th, 2001, 7:00 pm
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Location: Lethbridge, Alberta Canada
Water levels were pretty high but are good now - except Lanezi and Issac but more so Lanezi - quite a few of those campsites were still pretty wet. Trails are in good condition and dry except for the terminal ends of both Indian point portages.
Beaches are limited in those sites that usually have them but there is still a bit of beach (Sandy, Una etc)
The river portions are pretty easy due to the higher water levels.

I had + 30C weather and mostly clear the whole week so the forest is drying out considerably

One thing the website fails to mention is that the trail to the Cariboo falls from Una is closed due to the standing trees that are dead. bummer...

Bugs are bad; bring lots of repellant!

My first visit in 6yrs and it was a great trip - although I think I'll stick to august/sept dates to avoid the bugs next time. Lots of moose sightings and a bear.

Enjoy!


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PostPosted: February 18th, 2013, 2:19 pm 
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Joined: June 23rd, 2001, 7:00 pm
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Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
We are going this July, and would appreciate any advise you may have after doing the circuit - particularly with shuttles and outfitters. I will be flying in from Edmonton.

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Present: Slip, Slap and Slop, hide from the sun! Past: Get some colour in those cheeks! Paddle Naked!



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PostPosted: February 18th, 2013, 4:23 pm 
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I did this trip a number of years ago. We flew into Quesnel and took a pre-booked taxi to Becker's Lodge at the park gate where we rented our gear. This made more sense that renting a car and leaving sit in the parking lot for a week, but some people have found just the reverse.

Becker's was very good -- boats in good shape, extremely convenient location. We rented a cabin from them and found it was very nice. They seemed a little surprised that the boat was returned in good condition, but after meeting a few people on the portages I understood why. There are many people doing the circuit who have absolutely zero experience.

All in all, this was a great flatwater trip -- scenery is beautiful.


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PostPosted: February 18th, 2013, 5:23 pm 
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Joined: February 10th, 2008, 4:41 pm
Posts: 319
Bear River Mercantile has a good reputation but I have no personal experience with them. You need an axe that can spilt wood as all firewood is in big rounds and IF it rains ( :rofl: ) you will want a fire. You can rent almost anything from the outfitters. Great paddling and great scenery. Have fun.


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 1:06 am 
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Location: Burns Lake, BC
I have personal experience at both Becker's and Bear River Mercantile.

The owners of Bear River are super nice and will bend over backwards to help you or anyone for that matter.
A top notch outfitter with a genuine good person outlook.
I'll go there every time.

I'd recommend staying away from Becker's myself, but I do understand that they may provide services or product not available elsewhere.

Don't forget bug protection.


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 2:40 am 
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I rented a cart from Beckers in 2011 and had no problems - everything was handled quite smoothly.

At the time, Bear River was for sale - are these new owners? Or are the old owners still there, either still trying to sell or having given up?


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 2:56 am 
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Location: Burns Lake, BC
Not too sure.
An older couple owned it whenever we've been there. They've had it for sale for a long time.


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 9:24 am 
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Second the comment regarding the axe. Other than the wood piles set up by the park which need to be split the only other wood around is either living or rotten.

The outfitters can supply stoves, bear spray, etc. -- all that stuff that airlines don't like.


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 9:26 am 
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Location: Calgary, AB or wherever life takes me
I have not talked to Dick and Sandy, the owners of Bear River Mercantile, for nearly 3 years now/ At the time they were selling, but like Ted alluded to, the place had been for sale for a while. They were in no hurry to sell. Great folks, we stayed there a couple times in the winter before heading out on ski trips, and they fed us a great meal the night before too.

edit: I just checked the Bear River website, and it still shows the place for sale.
http://www.bowronlake.com/

I second (third, whatever) the advise to use an axe, not a hatchet. The round you see in the back in this photo from a canoe trip at Bowron is actually quite small compared to many that are supplied. This was in 2007, and was the inagural trip of many for my Gransfors Bruks Small Splitting Axe. It preformed fantastically for such a small axe, against a few rounds nearly 2' in diameter.

Image

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"Paddle faster, I hear banjos!"


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PostPosted: February 19th, 2013, 10:30 pm 
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Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
This is all very helpful! Thank you!

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Present: Slip, Slap and Slop, hide from the sun! Past: Get some colour in those cheeks! Paddle Naked!



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PostPosted: February 28th, 2013, 1:05 pm 
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Joined: June 23rd, 2001, 7:00 pm
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Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
the forums have been so helpful!

I wonder if anyone can help me in this post?
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtop ... 20&t=41061

regarding fitting all the gear, plus 2 adults and a tween in a swift winisk?

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Present: Slip, Slap and Slop, hide from the sun! Past: Get some colour in those cheeks! Paddle Naked!



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