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PostPosted: June 3rd, 2019, 8:06 pm 
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Joined: May 6th, 2019, 10:43 am
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Hi

Thanks for the earlier trip advice. We are now planning our trip in late July down the Partridge river, starting at upper Kesagami lake and ending up in James Bay near Moosonee. Pretty excited!!!

I am really interested to find out more about the history and culture of the area we will travel through. Are there any reference materials that people could direct me towards?

I would also like to understand the geology of the area better too and would appreciate any pointers there too?

I'd also like to learn more about the flora and fauna

Many thanks

Mal


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PostPosted: June 4th, 2019, 7:35 am 
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Joined: August 29th, 2006, 7:57 pm
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Location: Toronto
Mal, check out this list of books at amazon.ca for ideas. A couple of them may be available at your public library.

https://www.amazon.ca/s?k=the+james+bay+cree+and+the+land&ref=nb_sb_noss/

Home Is the Hunter: The James Bay Cree is an excellent read - it would answer many of your questions.

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Joseph Boyden's novel Three Day Road has the James Bay bush as half the setting of the story of a couple of Cree sharpshooters who have come home from time on the Western Front in WWI. I found it a compelling read.

Another great source is Victor Lytwyn's Muskekowuck Athinuwick: Original People of the Great Swampy Land. You can read an online copy at the google books site -

https://books.google.ca/books?id=HunCwRmZf6oC&pg=PR5&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false/

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Last edited by true_north on June 4th, 2019, 10:24 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: June 4th, 2019, 8:21 am 
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Joined: December 29th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Bancroft, Ontario Canada
Haven't been on the Kesagami, so won't comment on the geology except to say there are fossil beds to be found once you get off the granitic Canadian shield and onto sedimentary bedrock (eg. Fossil Island).

I did spent time on the Abitibi and found the fossils there interesting.... corals, snails and other organisms preserved in sediments deposited in a shallow warm sea maybe 400 million years ago. IIRC there are now fossil-hunting trips organized from Moosonee going upstream. I found better fossils on side feeder streams where fast water may have exposed them, don't know what you'll find exactly but worth a look.

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PostPosted: June 5th, 2019, 10:42 am 
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I've paddled this route. The Kesagami River from Upper Kesagami Lake to Kesagami Lake is full of switchbacks and is pretty swampy. The camp sites are poor. My group did not enjoy this part of the trip, but it also rained non-stop for about 5 days with temperatures in the single digits. That has likely had an impact on our impression of this section.

Things change dramatically once you start down the Partridge River from Partridge lake. Lots of exposed rock, good (but generally small) campsites and lots of whitewater. The Partridge drops close to 1000 feet, most of which is runnable moving water. There are a few small waterfalls and portages around Black Bear Island. Tons of large granite outcroppings in this section as you descend off the edge of the Canadian Shield and into the James Bay Lowlands. After Black Bear Island you are fully into the lowlands and there is another dramatic shift in the geology. The water is moving, but there are no more continuous class II rapids. The granite outcroppings are gone and replaced by mud banks. There are not many rocks at all in the lowlands. Things flatten out as you enter the Partridge estuary and then James Bay.

Are you planning to paddle James Bay to the Moose River and Moosonee?


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PostPosted: June 5th, 2019, 7:52 pm 
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Hi. I was on the Partridge River in early July 2011 with my daughter. We were flown into Partridge Lake by Kesagami Lake Lodge. The river starts as a very small creek with many beaver dam lift overs. Because the water level was so low we dragged our canoe for about 3 days until the river got bigger. Even then we were unable to paddle any swifts or rapids as it was too shallow. We wore a hole through the bottom of a Starburst. If the water levels were higher it could have been an a good river. It is very small and closed in compared to the Missinaibi or Harricana. With high water it might be fun as I don't remember many big drops just long continuous swifts. I have not paddled the Kesagami but have paddled the Kattawagami and would advise you to check these out if you have any concerns at all about water levels as they have more volume. Getting off that river and onto the train was one of the happiest days of my life.


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PostPosted: June 6th, 2019, 2:26 pm 
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Joined: May 6th, 2019, 10:43 am
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Thanks for all the comments

yes we are hoping given that it has been such a late and wet spring that the river levels won't be too low.

also we are paddling in packrafts which have a shallower draft than a canoe and also are a lot easier to portage.

So we are hoping for happier conditions than others report here.

Thanks for the info on the geology and the Cree

Much appreciated

M


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PostPosted: June 7th, 2019, 12:49 pm 
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Location: Eganville, ON
I've done the route from upper kesagami to the big lake, then we portaged over to the netogami. From upper kesagami to the partridge would be a pretty solid 3 days of flatwater paddling in a canoe. How fast does a packraft travel?


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PostPosted: June 7th, 2019, 10:49 pm 
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I paddled this route starting in late May 2016. We were on the water for 10 days. The water levels we experienced were perfect in my opinion. Lots of water and many many long continuous r2s (and the odd r3).

I would not want to paddle this river in low water conditions as already stated. I only just clued in that you plan to paddle this route in July. I wouldn’t do it. It is a small river and notorious for running out of water later in the year.

Evan with the late spring I would be very cautious about this one. Pack rafts may have less draft, but no water is still no water. How do they handle being dragged over rocks for days on end?


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PostPosted: June 7th, 2019, 11:20 pm 
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2016 was a bit of an odd year for levels, water was lower than normal for late May but increased during June and then had several high spikes over the summer. A lot depends on precipitation, levels on the Partridge respond quickly to rainfall. On the other hand if it's really dry through June and early July things might not be so nice.

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PostPosted: June 8th, 2019, 7:09 pm 
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For paddling to James Bay in July I would suggest the Harricana, Kesagami, Kattawagami, and maybe the North French. The Partridge and Nettogami are spring runs only IMHO.

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