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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2015, 6:00 am 
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BEST ISLAND WHITEWATER LAKE "Wendell Beckwith"

Does anyone know of a group or individual, involved or interested in the preservation of the buildings on Best Island, Beckwirth Camp, Whitewater Lake Ontario?

Also, has anyone visited the Island recently (2013-2014) and can tell me the present condition of the buildings. If you have pictures I would appreciate seeing them. I have many pictures of the camp, Wendell pre-1980, if anyone would care to see them, I would be happy to post them.
I appreciate all comments and responses…John


Last edited by Barbara on May 23rd, 2015, 7:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
moved to the Ontario Discussion & Resources forum


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2015, 6:12 am 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Some years ago there was a group --a "Friends" group. But when we last visited ( I think it was 2008) the buildings were already in a partial state of collapse and I heard that the decision had been made to allow the buildings to decay as Wendell Beckwith never owned them.. He was a squatter and the buildings are not in keeping with the classification of Wabakimi PP.

Hopefully someone has more up to date news.


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2015, 7:38 am 
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Captain John, I visited the cabins on Best Island in 2011, after having missed seeing them as we paddled by in 2010. They are not in great shape.

Clearly the Park officials have decided that spending a million dollars to preserve the site is not part of the plan; the nearly Ojibwa cottage community also has no reason to make it their project. See this post for pictures of both the Beckwith Cabin site and the Ogoki Lodge just up from it.

click on this link http://wp.me/p25mXk-bK

Image

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Last edited by true_north on December 19th, 2016, 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: May 27th, 2015, 4:38 pm 
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wow... It's time I get up there to see these buildings before they are gone!

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PostPosted: May 27th, 2015, 7:24 pm 
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Something I still feel bad about is leaving Best Island that afternoon in 2011 not having done something with that tarp. That tarp was put there in 2007 after a tree crashed down on the roof. The site definitely deserves some care.

Given the presence of at least four lodges and outposts on Whitewater Lake, I wonder why they haven't joined together to preserve something that is an added hook- a historical site to visit - for the clients that stay up there on fishing holidays. And I'm sure that the lodge owners I just volunteered are wondering where the Park officials are in all this?

Maybe a new Park Superintendent will result in action?

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PostPosted: May 27th, 2015, 8:37 pm 
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My understanding is the lodges are on leased land and the Beckwith compound never generated any money for the MNR. Wendell was a squatter.

The Park is pretty clear on what it won't do.

Best Island does have a very nice campsite and Uncle Phil campfire set up.


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PostPosted: May 28th, 2015, 11:06 am 
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Good morning,

It is exciting to see interest once again, generated about Wendell Beckwith, and the buildings on Best Island. "BeckWirth Camp"

While interest in the subject is nothing new, perhaps now may be the right time to once again try to collaborate with the Park, and other interested parties that have an interest in the restoration and care of the buildings?

To quote an 2005 article from the Globe and Mail" the writer called the buildings one of the countries most inaccessible architectural treasures".

It seems to me, that it would be a worthy effort to see how many folks would be interested in being involved in a long-range project such as this?

John


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