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PostPosted: September 22nd, 2004, 9:11 am 
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Joined: March 5th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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We are looking for a 3 weeks trip next year, my wife and I, without the kids.
On our list, the Athabasca area is close to the top (see website of Rolf Kraiker for pictures).

While I understand the bugs dynamic in eastern Canada, I am not sure about Alberta. To some extend, my question would be what is the best period to canoe there?


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PostPosted: September 22nd, 2004, 9:53 am 
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Joined: March 17th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Feel free to ask me questions directly, either by phone or email. Hopefully you'll also get some other feedback from people in the area.

As a general observation from our travels in the north, I'd say your experience with bugs will be very dependent on the weather. If the summer has been hot and dry, you'll probably not encouter a lot of biting insects and will have a great time. If the weather has been cool and rainy, that will result in a less favourable bug situations. We've only done the one trip to the sand dunes area and during the time we were there it was mostly hot and dry. I don't think we put our bug suits on during the entire three weeks we were out and could walk around in T-shrts and shorts without concern. When doing the research for the trip, we spoke to a number of locals by phone or email and we had the impression that the weather before our arrival had been on the cool and rainy side. At least a week went by before we arrive on location from the time we got the weather reports, maybe a bit more. If the weather affects the bugs in that area, you'll need to know what it's like less than week before arriving if the information is to be of any help. I'm not sure that any local information you're going to get will be very helpful though. Everyone I talked to seemed of the opinion that the water levels in the rivers should be high, but it wasn't the case when we got there. The conclusion I came to is that none of the folks I communicated with was close enough to the rivers to give any useful information, they all made assumptions based on what they observed nearby. Hope that helps.


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PostPosted: September 27th, 2004, 10:52 am 
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Joined: December 11th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Ft. McMurray
Rolf Kraiker wrote:
The conclusion I came to is that none of the folks I communicated with was close enough to the rivers to give any useful information

Shycanoe
You just need to ask the right people. I live and paddle on the Athabasca so if you need any info I would be glad to help. I lived near the headwaters, Jasper, for ten years and now I am at the other end, Ft.McMurray.
Visit my website for a link to the Athabasca River Levels
You can choose between current reading and charts which will plot the flows compared to the historical averages.
ShyCanoe wrote:
what is the best period to canoe there?

As far as levels go. Near Jasper, June is the highest water time. Near Ft.McMurray, July is more the peak............. ha except for right now. Yesterday we were paddling up the Athabasca enjoying the fall colours and the river was zipping. It's almost as high as it's june levels. Right now would be the perfect time as the colors are awesome, there's no bugs or people. Hurry up and get here before the rivers drops again. :wink:
As far as bugs go. The further upstream you are the better they are. Jasper area is pretty good, only bug spray is needed at times. It depends on the weather and the time of year. Not may black flies. Quite a few horse flies from McMurray down to the lake. Mozis can be bad here too if wet weather is followed my nice warm weather in which case netting is nice. Right now there are almost no bugs here in McMurray. June and July are the worst but it's really all about the weather.

Like the fur trade days of old, the Houses were looked forward too, so stop at the Zandee House for a beer or coffee on the way through. 8)

_________________

"It's all part of the adventure"



Last edited by D.R.Zandee on September 27th, 2004, 11:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: September 27th, 2004, 10:58 am 
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Joined: March 5th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Thanks to both of you - I am in the middle of selecting and budgeting the trip. You have some many amazing potential trips in that region. Once I will have all my questionssssss, I will certainly contact you.


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