View topic - 5 Lined Skinks in Puzzle Lake PP

It is currently October 1st, 2020, 11:18 am

All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 10 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: August 10th, 2020, 7:02 am 
Offline

Joined: November 6th, 2019, 11:01 am
Posts: 48
I just did a quick 1 nighter in Puzzle Lake PP. Park is busy and sites are taken by 5pm Friday on Gull/Little Gull/Puzzle and most of the time, Loyst. The portage from Loyst to Mud and Mud to Norway obviously separate the men from the boys and women from the girls. The portage out of Mud to Norway requires you to snake through a 2 foot wide channel meandering through high marshy reeds and makes navigation slow going, standing up to scout helps. There is a tiny piece of flagging tape marking the entrance to the snaking channel on the left side of Mud. Once you get to shore, the portage is less than 100 metres over a berm and the put-in is back in lillypad covered wetland on the south-east side of Norway. I discovered to my dismay that there are 2 campsites on the very southern end of Norway that are accessible by road and there were 2 groups on the 2 sites and they said they had walked about 5k from their car to get there. I continued up and East to portage into Bear Lake, which is in my opinion the most beautiful lake in the park. Last year when I was there, I found a wonderful red and orange salamander and this year on my campsite there was a 5 Lined Skink! I reported to the MNR and they asked for more info. On Saturday morning, I bushwacked down into Wheeler Lake, it was tough going, I had to push my way through choked-up marshes and wetlands, hike through dense bush and then follow the huge power line East some ways before hooking south down through more wetlands to get to Wheeler. Wheeler lake is very beautiful, has several spots for sites (I did not stay there) and a lot of nice quartz. I swam around, ate lunch and did some filming before returning back to Bear. I saw a great big Doe leaping through the forest when I disturbed her. Leopard frogs everywhere. Puzzle Lake is a wonderful spot, for the less adventurous the 2 sites on Loyst are very nice and there looks to be some great jumping rocks on Puzzle right before you portage into Loyst. A great spot for anyone!!

_________________
YouTube: Solo Wilderness Adventures
https://tinyurl.com/y8x4ubn4


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 11th, 2020, 10:06 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: June 23rd, 2001, 7:00 pm
Posts: 3319
Location: Newmarket, Ontario Canada
Thanks for posting!

_________________
"I've never met a river I didn't like. The experience is what we remember and the challenges make for great memories". Me


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 20th, 2020, 7:02 pm 
Offline

Joined: January 5th, 2020, 10:11 am
Posts: 39
Thanks for posting. I will look into trying a trip on these lakes.

I have seen 5-lined skinks a number of times in the Kawartha Highlands. I mention them in the following trip report:

https://www.canoedaddy.com/Kawartha-Hig ... op-4-Days/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 21st, 2020, 6:48 am 
Offline

Joined: November 6th, 2019, 11:01 am
Posts: 48
Canoe Daddy - great idea, make sure you end up on Bear Lake for at least a night. Skink was seen on the south-east campsite on Bear. Footage of the skink starts at 30:05 of this trip video if you want to see it:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DZOXqC_GMc&t=1278s

PS: Thanks Cheryl :)

_________________
YouTube: Solo Wilderness Adventures
https://tinyurl.com/y8x4ubn4


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 21st, 2020, 12:55 pm 
Offline

Joined: January 5th, 2020, 10:11 am
Posts: 39
Hey Jbrave.

Thanks for sharing your vid. Entertaining. You play a mean air paddle. Love the 80s throwback too.

Funny you mention the Massasauga rattler. On the civic holiday weekend, 8 of us paddled the French river. On our 2nd night we camped out on Georgian Bay, and only after we had set up our tents did we realize we were camped right over a nest of them. They were burrowed among the roots of this little pine grove we were in. I nearly stepped on one; he was coiled up in the underbrush blending in nicely. I only stopped walking after I heard the rattle (sounds a bit like a bunch of mosquitoes buzzing all at once). He shot out at me for a bite, but I was beyond his reach thankfully. I may have beaten Usain Bolt's 100m record running out of there! Lol! It certainly added a new dimension to the trip. Everyone watched every step they took and made sure all zips on the tents were firmly shut! I have photos that I'll post when I get around to writing the trip report on that one.

Just wondering if you would be willing to share any maps or documentation with me about portages and/or campsite locations of your Puzzle lake trip? Would be greatly appreciated! I live in Peterborough and its not too far from me.

Thanks,

Steve


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 21st, 2020, 1:51 pm 
Offline

Joined: November 6th, 2019, 11:01 am
Posts: 48
Hey Canoe Daddy, glad you liked it! Honestly that makes me super stoked! That is insane about the nest of rattlers, cool how the sound reminded you of a ball of angry mosquitoes! Definitely the kind of animal to admire from a distance! I have pasted the map that I used below, it was hard to find, but it does encompass the whole park, at least the areas with sites. I really love this park, the sunsets and sunrises on Bear Lake are really nice, but I haven't caught any fish there yet. Have fun, stoked to see the pictures you post! Thanks for watching my video.

The campsite I like on Bear is the one that is most South-East. All portages are very short distance except the last one into bear which is probably 300-400m (Portage entrance is obvious but further North than it looks on the map). Loyst is very nice, very clear water. Into and out of Mud Lake are a bit of a pain, you will get dirty! There is free parking but get there early as the sites on Gull/Puzzle fill up quick. Also very nice island site on Norway which is clear water as well, but there is a cottage on Norway.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

_________________
YouTube: Solo Wilderness Adventures
https://tinyurl.com/y8x4ubn4


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2020, 6:52 am 
Offline

Joined: November 6th, 2019, 11:01 am
Posts: 48
Canoe Daddy - here is some footage of a Eastern Hognose flaring its hood, just like a cobra! Found it last year.
Video from Massassauga PP. Footage of the snake is the first 20 seconds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MajhEd3Y374&t=107s

_________________
YouTube: Solo Wilderness Adventures
https://tinyurl.com/y8x4ubn4


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2020, 6:47 pm 
Offline

Joined: January 5th, 2020, 10:11 am
Posts: 39
Awesome. Thanks for the map!

Steve


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 23rd, 2020, 1:52 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 18th, 2020, 8:01 pm
Posts: 2
Curious about reporting 5L skink to MNR, are they that rare? Kids and I saw a bunch on crown land few weeks back. Got some decent photos as one ran between my feet. https://photos.app.goo.gl/n8FHm33d7xQ7WEDS7


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: August 29th, 2020, 9:36 pm 
Offline

Joined: November 6th, 2019, 11:01 am
Posts: 48
I reported the info and very quickly they responded asking for more information including exact location. Turns out they are endangered, maybe it was a good year for viewing.

_________________
YouTube: Solo Wilderness Adventures
https://tinyurl.com/y8x4ubn4


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 10 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group