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 Post subject: Turner loop (Temagami)
PostPosted: September 23rd, 2018, 10:56 pm 
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Joined: August 19th, 2011, 8:28 am
Posts: 435
Planning this kind of last-minute, but my wife and I are thinking to do some variation of the Turner loop this coming Friday-Monday. The Eagle Lake ridge is a big draw, as are pictographs and fish. My thought is this:

Day 1 - Start from Red Squirrel Lake access. Travel Ferguson Bay - Whitefish Bay - Aston Lake. Camp there or, if we're making good time, continue to Turner Lake.

Day 2 - Aston (or Turner) to Eagle Lake; climb the ridge. If there is still time in the day, continue to Shallow Lake to camp; if not just camp on Eagle.

Day 3 - Through Harris to Anima Nipissing; go south, check out the pictograph spots and end at McLean access. One person goes for a jog down the road to Red Squirrel put-in and brings back the car.

My questions are:

1. Is this overly ambitious for 3 days (single-carrying portages, but not trying to make it a heavy push)? The alternative would be to make a shorter loop out of the Shallow-Harris route and the Little Eagle-Whitewater route.

2. Any tips on finding the best route to the ridge on Eagle Lake?

3. Why does all the older info on the Turner loop involve the Little Eagle-Whitewater route instead of the Shallow-Harris route? It seems to me like the Shallow-Harris route would be easier. Were those portages only cut more recently?

4. Any reason to consider travelling in the opposite direction?

5. Any insights on current route/portage conditions?

6. Any hints on fishing this route? I imagine the target species are walleye, lakers and smallies on Aston, lakers on Turner, specks on Shallow and I don't know what on Eagle. I'm grateful for PMs if people don't want to talk about that publicly.

Thanks!


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PostPosted: September 24th, 2018, 8:51 am 
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Joined: February 12th, 2008, 6:01 pm
Posts: 460
Location: North Bay, Ontario
Hi,

My wife and I recently did most of this route, although we started at Anima Nip and took the Little Eagle-Whitewater pass. We considered the other route through Shallow but as you say there is no information on it and it is often the case that little-used portages are in rough shape, especially on crown land routes like this.

Your timetable looks do-able. I would highly recommend camping on Turner Lake as we found it much nicer than Aston. That said the fishing (for bass) may be better on Aston.

I would expect to see some downed trees on the portages from the recent storm.

We did not climb the ridge at Eagle Lake. It is an interesting area, however. Seems to be a group of drumlins, with lots of sand and gravel in the area. Not typical shield rock and not that great for camping imho.

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: September 24th, 2018, 10:41 pm 
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Joined: August 19th, 2011, 8:28 am
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Thanks kinguq! By the way does your comment on the gravel not being great for camping apply just to Eagle Lake specifically or the surrounding lakes as well? Probably can't avoid camping within a couple of portages of Eagle.


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PostPosted: September 25th, 2018, 8:04 am 
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Joined: February 12th, 2008, 6:01 pm
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Location: North Bay, Ontario
Hi,

It refers to Eagle Lake and the area to the south, possibly extending all the way down the Eagle River. It is interesting terrain, and appeared to be a drumlin field to me. There is only one campsite marked on Eagle Lake and that is indeed the only one we saw.

I just prefer rocky campsites!

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: September 25th, 2018, 6:57 pm 
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Joined: September 28th, 2001, 7:00 pm
Posts: 85
I have done variations of this trip both this year and last -- it is a favourite. The campsite on Turner is one of the best! Your timing is reasonable if the weather is good and you don't mind doing a bunch of long carries.

Single carrying you should be able to do Anima Nip to Turner in a day, via Little Eagle or Shallow/Harris. I preferred the the latter (there's an ugly road just west of Whitewater Lake and portage heading into Little Eagle is very long). Turner to Aston and Lake Temagami is about 1/2 day; it's a long carry into Aston from the north. Another couple hours to to come back to Red Squirrel.

Eagle Lake is gravelly with an esker at north end. Island campsite is okay with a good view and a steep bluff landing. Lots of room to set up under red pines on high but not the classic shield type of campsite. Not sure about the bushwhack to Eagle Ridge.

Enjoy!


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PostPosted: September 26th, 2018, 8:00 am 
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Joined: August 19th, 2011, 8:28 am
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Great, thanks guys. Greenlander, it sounds like you've been going counterclockwise, opposite how I was planning -- is there a reason or is either way fine?


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PostPosted: September 26th, 2018, 4:19 pm 
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Joined: September 28th, 2001, 7:00 pm
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I would say you're good going either way. All of the portages are a bit brushy but the landings are evident and the footpaths well-worn with few major obstructions. There was one low-water section at the landing from Shallow Lake to Eagle. Eagle to Curt and/or the 1500 to Little Eagle are the 2 toughest portages, but fine if you are only walking them once. Enjoy!


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PostPosted: September 27th, 2018, 11:47 am 
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Joined: February 26th, 2009, 11:13 am
Posts: 141
Location: Eganville, ON
1. Certainly an ambitious route. It is doable, but if portages are in rough shape it could be very challenging and not leave much (or any) time for fishing/relaxing. Remember the daylight period is getting quite short now.

2. Been there numerous times, prefer to look at it from the canoe! You will not have time for climbing on a 3 day trip.

3. The shallow to harris is not easy to find nor well travelled (head due east through the swamp at the end of shallow lake). From Harris to anima-nip is good though.

4. Prevailing winds on the big bays possibly? Personally I'd go the same direction as your plan.

5. I've been through most of the Muskego over the years; and always had a great time. If you wanted to reduce your travel you could drive north on the eagle lake road to the gate and start your trip in little eagle. The portage into little eagle is just a few yards past the gate.

6. Never managed to find a speck in Shallow despite a few separate trips. Eagle is very nice Pike fishing.

Wish I was going! Such a nice time of year for tripping.


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PostPosted: April 2nd, 2019, 10:13 am 
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Joined: November 10th, 2015, 10:23 am
Posts: 22
Hi

I'm planing a similar trip to above in August 2019 and have a few questions:

1. Our current plan is:
- Put in: Ferguson bay
- Night 1: Aston,
- Night 2: Turner Lake,
- Night 3 Little Eagle Lake,
- Night 4 Anima Nipissing
- Take out: McLean Lake

Is anyone aware of any A+ campsites that should not be missed (reading above seems like the island on Turner Lake should not be missed)?

2. Our group likes to do side hikes. Wondering if anyone has any comments on the following trails (length/time to hike, best place to get trail head, worth doing etc):
- Ferguson Mountain
- Napoleon Mountain
- Eagle lake Ridge

Any other info on the route would be great.

Cheers


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