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 Post subject: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: April 25th, 2021, 11:49 am 
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Has anyone paddled from Winnipeg to Kenora? If so what major issues are there on the route and how long did it take? It appears to be about 400 km and I am assuming a trip of 14 days would be sufficient.

Thank you for any assistance even if it is only for a portion of the route.


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: April 25th, 2021, 1:19 pm 
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I wonder if Dougie has OPP officers hanging out near Boundary Island to stop anyone paddling across the provincial border... All of us crazy interprovincial canoeists are surely causing more covid spread than the warehouses and construction sites that he refuses to close. :roll:

Sorry, couldn't help myself. :P Please carry on!


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: April 25th, 2021, 2:50 pm 
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I think Hap Wilson’s book, “Lake Superior to Manitoba by Canoe” deals with a section from Kenora (Lake of the Woods) westward to the Manitoba border, though I don’t think he describes anything from the border to Winnipeg. My memory is fuzzy.

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: April 25th, 2021, 5:49 pm 
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Location: Waterloo, ON
As noted by Sturgeon, Hap’s book is probably a must-read if you’re looking to paddle this stretch.

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: April 30th, 2021, 1:24 pm 
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Joined: March 26th, 2013, 9:27 pm
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Location: Winnipeg, MB
Not familiar with the route but I assume you'd be paddling upstream in AIS control zones.

https://www.gov.mb.ca/asset_library/en/ ... l_zone.pdf


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 2nd, 2021, 11:09 am 
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Thank you for the replies. Yes wee will be in the Winnipeg River and Central Control Zones. I have decided to do the route from Kenora to Winnipeg allowing more days of downstream travel. The only upstream portions will be on the Red and Assiniboine Rivers. I am quite familiar with the ON portion of the waterway but not much after Whitedog dam. Does anyone have information or experience with the Manitoba portion of the Winnipeg River? Do all the rapids/falls and dams have portage options?

Thank you


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 2nd, 2021, 12:27 pm 
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hi tbeb -

A long, long, long time ago - actually in the year Neil Armstrong walked on the moon - two friends and I paddled from Kenora to Selkirk. Recollections are necessarily vague: but we were able to portage all the dams without encountering any real problems. Given how litigious our society has become over the last half century, I'd be surprised if most of the dams don't by now have portage signage. I saw this on the web - a new portage route is in effect for 2021 at Slave Falls (south of Pointe du Bois).

https://www.hydro.mb.ca/projects/system ... _sheet.pdf

With the exception of the rapid above Nutimik Lake, basically all the drop in the river is taken up by the dams. Satellite imagery is very good along the river and would be a good tool for portage scouting.

Problems - I'm sure the shoreline is much more developed in many areas than it was long ago, so camping could be an issue in places. Lake Winnipeg - if the wind blows it's a nasty place. Seeing exactly where you are in the Red River delta from water level is a challenge - a good satellite image would be a big help. After you hit Lake Winnipeg and in the Red River I assume you will be carrying drinking water, and perhaps even before that. And the current in the Red River can vary and be affected by prevailing winds. A few days of strong south winds can lower water levels in the south basin of Lake Winnipeg, increasing the gradient of the river and the current.

Eric Morse's book - "Fur Trade Routes of Canada / Then and Now" - while also a little dated, gives a good description of the river "pre-dams" and the changes they have made. It also suggests portage locations. If you can get hold of a copy it would be helpful.

Good luck with your trip.

-jmc


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 2nd, 2021, 4:00 pm 
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 4:58 pm
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Location: Manitoba
There should be portage routes past all the dams, and as jmc mentioned there is plans for a new portage at Slave Falls, although I don't know if it is in use yet.

I've heard of big mileage days on the Winnipeg River because of the current assist but also remember that with its big volume comes big width so wind could be an issue. Sturgeon Falls, where the river enters Nutimik Lake has strong currents. Water levels vary because it is on a dam controlled river so past reports are not always relevant. Scout or portage.

Lake Winnipeg and the Red River do not have the water quality of the Winnipeg River.

On the lake, you may wish to paddle when the wind is down and not keep a 'regular' daily routine. Usually first light and evenings are calmer. You can pass south of Elk Island, usually floating but you might have to portage. There isn't a lot of public lands along Lake Wpg that allow camping.

I've used the buoyed channel markers as a reference to locate the main Red River mouth. I don't know if it's still marked. There are other channels so a good map or imagery would be helpful. Similar to Lake Wpg, I'm not sure how much public land there is along the Red River corridor. I'd ask permission first before camping and you'll hopefully be met with a friend Manitoban who will also refill your drinking water containers.

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 3rd, 2021, 9:08 pm 
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Location: Winnipeg, MB
Paddle Power wrote:
...who will also refill your drinking water containers.


With water Brian? Or some gin if they find the right house?

The Whiteshell backcountry map has the official campsites marked and you must camp at a designated campsite while in the Whiteshell. You'll also see an alternate route through Echo Lake. I expect the Whiteshell to be extremely busy this summer but the Winnipeg River and Echo lake may not share the same swarm of COVID paddlers as the southern section of the Whiteshell.


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 4th, 2021, 12:11 pm 
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Location: a bit south ofWinnipeg
Apparently the portages along the Echo Lake route area real mess at the Winnipeg River end due to ATV traffic into George Lake.

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 4th, 2021, 12:47 pm 
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 4:58 pm
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Location: Manitoba
https://www.gov.mb.ca/sd/pubs/parks-pro ... ry_map.pdf

The map is on the last page.

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 4th, 2021, 3:21 pm 
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Location: a bit south ofWinnipeg
You could always go from the Winnipeg River up the Bird River to Snowshoe Lake then across to Werner and then down to Umfreville and down to Kenora from there!

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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 5th, 2021, 8:50 am 
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Location: Winnipeg, MB
chris randall wrote:
Apparently the portages along the Echo Lake route area real mess at the Winnipeg River end due to ATV traffic into George Lake.


Ugh. Makes me sad. Don't know why they call them ATVs when the can only ride on (and destroy) established trails.


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 Post subject: Re: Winnipeg to Kenora
PostPosted: May 14th, 2021, 2:40 pm 
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Thank you for all of this information. This is all very helpful. I am also concerned about the busy backcountry campgrounds and also limited area to camp once out of the Whiteshell. Hopefully this will not prove to be too limiting.


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