View topic - Gong Lake Aubinadong access

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PostPosted: December 2nd, 2019, 1:47 pm 
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I'm trying to find a route into Gong lake other than starting at Ranger Lake.
I have heard that the road on the east side of Ranger leading into Gong is not navigable. There is a road shown on several maps on the west side of Ranger lake that runs up to the Laughing Lakes/Tujak Lake area and then turns east to end at the T just south of Gong Lake. Does anyone know how far one can travel up this road? Would be nice if its possible to get all the way to Gong using this road. Thanks


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PostPosted: December 2nd, 2019, 7:34 pm 
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The road you mention (Laughing Lake Rd) west of Ranger Lake is doable if you have a good bush vehicle -- 4wd pickup or SUV that you don't mind crashing thru some rough stuff. A lot depends on the time of year and amount of water in the bush.

The road on the east side (Domtar Rd) is generally pretty rough, but might be driveable later in the season -- lots of big holes, ruts, washouts and overhanging trees. It's doable to north end of Saymo but gets really bad beyond that. Most people are driving it on quads/side-by-sides.

On the plus side, there's no active logging in the area for the foreseeable future. Starting from Ranger (east end of the lake at Lawrence Lake) isn't so bad, and if you don't mind portaging and travel efficiently you can make it to Gong in 1.5 days.


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PostPosted: December 3rd, 2019, 9:38 am 
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Location: GTA
Greenlander wrote:
On the plus side, there's no active logging in the area for the foreseeable future. Starting from Ranger (east end of the lake at Lawrence Lake) isn't so bad, and if you don't mind portaging and travel efficiently you can make it to Gong in 1.5 days.


I've done this route twice via Lawrence Lake. I know you specifically say you don't want to access via Ranger/Lawrence, but I wanted to support what Greenlander wrote.

Driving from the GTA and arriving at Lawrence a bit past noon, I was able to get into Island Lake in time for dinner. From there it's only two more portages to Gong. Depending on the time of arrival at Lawrence, someone could get into Gong in a day; in fact, on my way out I left Gong at about 8:00 a.m. one morning, arrived at the landing at Lawrence by around 4:00 p.m. and was back in the GTA much later that night.

You can also extend the portage past Island Lake and go straight into Mystery Lake, then one more short portage to Gong. This would likely be faster overall, but would probably be a bit more total portage length.


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PostPosted: December 3rd, 2019, 11:03 pm 
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Thanks guys. Guess I'll use the Ranger/Lawrence lake access as my starting point for my run in 2020.


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PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 8:42 am 
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More info here:
https://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewto ... 07&t=44471

Specifically, this feedback was from September 2019:
"FYI, I messaged Clergue Forest Management last week about road access to Gong Lake. This was the reply:
There has been no additional work completed on the Ranger Northeast or Domtar Roads to date. I was through there last fall and the roads are pretty rough with some washouts. The other access you are enquiring about is the Mile 38/MacDonald Creek/Mekatina Road systems which connect to the Domtar Road north of Gong Lake. The Mekatina Road section would not be passable by a car and thus not an option.
At this time, it sounds like road access to Gong Lake is out and the route can only be accessed via Ranger Lake."

Doing the ~3km both ways and spending more time on developed lakes sucks (Ranger and a little on Saymo), and the route would be far superior from Gong, but it's still a fantastic trip.

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PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 9:39 am 
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Just wanted to add that that ~3km portage could likely be done a lot of the way with a canoe cart if you were so inclined. And could lock the cart up (or hide it in the bush) at Island Lake, then use it on the way back.


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PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 11:38 am 
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In June 2019 I cut and blazed a trail from the road to Island Lake that shortens to 3 km portage Jon mentions to a "mere" 2.3 km. From Saymo, follow the Domtar Rd north. Take first branch (smaller road) on the right. You'll quickly pass through a wet area (thick alders on either side). After that watch for the blazes on the right. I didn't make it super obvious but there's a rough path, no problem carrying the canoe. The ground is wet but it's only about 100 m to the south finger bay of Island Lake.

The canoe cart suggestion is great -- use it for this carry and stash it in the bush.

More travellers will help but let's keep the trail inconspicuous to keep out the ATVs. Ditto for the rest of the route up the W Aubinadong to Megisan Lake. Jon's map is great. Trails are all there but some are quite faint. Now that I've figured it all out I can do Ranger to Megisan and back in 5 days, travelling pretty hard.

The Nushatogaini is a work in progress. It's doable if you don't mind bushwhacking, but it's going to require some serious effort and chainsaw work to reopen.

This route is definitely best in high water. Water levels in early June were excellent. Looks to me like "high water" roughly equates to anything over 2.0 m on the Water Office gauge for the Aubinadong River.


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