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 Post subject: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 6th, 2011, 11:18 am 
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Joined: February 10th, 2005, 2:36 pm
Posts: 210
Location: Southwest Michigan
Dave and I slipped out of Grand Rapids, Michigan about 9:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 6. It felt surreal. After all the planning and preparing our trip had really begun. We were rich with maps. I had painstakingly downloaded the topographic maps (toporama)from Allenwater Bridge to Kenoji Lake with three alternate routes from there to Whitewater lake and then from Whitewater to Little Caribou. I had also purchased the Wabakimi Canoe Routes booklet (volume one) from the Wabakimi Project [url]wabakimi.org/maps[/url]

The fact that the WCR maps have campsites and portage trails marked made them very valuable indeed. Dave had applied Thompsons Water Sealer to all of these maps.

As usual my dear wife (who has written two highly successful cookbooks) had dried all of my food for the trip. I so appreciate the healthy dried food she prepares for me. Anyone interested in her food preparation can view the video. The video also contains a few nice shots of Wabakimi.



We had chosen to carry a phone for this trip. The best deal I found (in the US) was from http://www.satellitephonesource.com. Their customer service was excellent and we had absolutely no trouble with the phone.

We drove as far as Sault Ste. Marie. There, sometime after midnight, by prior arrangement, we were able to spread out our pads and sleeping bags on the floor of a church foyer.

July 7
We were back on the road before sunrise and arrived at Mattice Lake Outfitters around 4:00 p.m. We picked up our permits and made arrangements for our vehicle to be dropped at the takeout on Little Caribou Lake. They would pick up the vehicle at the train pick-up, store it and then at the right time take it to Little Caribou.

Dave and I decided to drive up to our intended take out spot to have a look. Next we headed back to the little restaurant in Armstrong where I made final calls to my wife. I met a man and his young son there. They were from Minnesota and were scheduled to go onto the Kopka the next morning.

The train arrived an hour earlier than we expected. Fortunately we were there and ready. About 30 people boarded with us. Most or all of these got off at Collins. We were the only paddlers who loaded at Armstrong.

The scheduled drop off at Allanwater Bridge was 10:49 p.m. There is no reason for concern about being dropped off in the wilderness in the middle of the night. I had contacted Johnny Jelinski at the Allenwater Bridge Lodge and made arrangements to pitch our tents on his property. I had easily reached him by phone prior to the beginning of his season. Once the season begins the best way to contact him is by e-mail.

The lodge is right by the side of the tracks. Johnny was there to greet us as we got off the train. We quickly set up our tents, partly in the dark and partly in the lights from Johnny's four-wheeler.

July 8

In the early morning we made our way over to the dock where we cooked breakfast and began observing our new environment. One of the clients and his young son made their way over to the dock. Their group was occupying several cabins. They indicated disappointment in the fishing. At the end of our trip, when we ran into fisherman on Whitewater Lake we heard the same story. Most blamed it on the unusually low later.

Since we did a little exploring of the area we didn't push off until about 10:30. Just as we did five tandem canoes of girls who had come under the Armstrong Bridge pulled up. We had a brief exchange. They had stopped to hopefully get some mail.

We were on our way. Very soon we ran our first rapid followed by two more. The first two had portages the third didn't seem to. By day's end we would run seven or eight rapids and make at least two portages. When we came to the place where the river splits we chose to take the east branch. This meant we turned south and then east before continuing north.

Once we headed north we passed through a lake and then found our home for the night. We were very near the place where the two branches of the river come back together. It had been a great day. We saw a number of bald eagles along the way. It was good to be in the wilderness. I was clean and in my tent by 8:00 p.m. I kept my watch on Eastern Time the entire trip. We had traveled roughly 11 kilometers, run many rapids and portaged a few as well. Sleep came quickly.

July 9
When I first woke up I lay in the tent listening to the birds and the flowing water. There was a good breeze last night and this morning. I was out of the tent at 6:00. We had breakfast at 6:30 but didn't leave the site until 9:30. It was essentially bug-free. I had some fresh blueberries with my breakfast.

We ran the swifts immediately after our campsite and headed on. We eventually came to a pond. Here we stopped and scouted an old cabin. Before too long we came to a specific rapid. I can't recall if we had run some before this. Given it was a little on the longer side and, unlike some we had seen, the portage looked well used, we decided to carry our bags without looking at the rapids.

Having made the 1st carry we were surprised to turn around and meet two girls both appearing to be in their 20s. They were the leaders of the group we had briefly seen back at Allenwater Bridge Lodge. We learned that, unlike us, they had taken the west branch of the river.

After we talked a bit with the girls they began scouting the rapids. For some reason Dave and I had pretty much made up our minds and so just took a quick glance and headed back to finish the portage. When we got back to the take out we found 8 more girls, all in their teens. Their faces indicated they were thoroughly content. They were sitting quietly in their wannigan laden, green, wooden canoes waiting for the word from their leaders. They would soon learn the word was that they would be running the rapid on river left all the way down.

Dave and I loaded and pushed off. We shortly came to and ran what I judged to be a class 2 rapid. Next we came to another rapid which we portaged. The girls were bringing their first load to the end of the trail as we pushed off.

In no time we came to a pond. At the north east end of this pond there is a large island. I did not recognize it was an island and in spite of Dave's expressed concern we paddled down the narrowing on the right of the island. We could plainly see that there was a waterfall down a ways but I expected to find the portage prior to that. Not seeing a portage we turned around. I was surprised at the current against us as we headed back out of this narrowing. Had we made the same mistake in higher water it could have been a serious one.

With the girls once again visible we made our way to the true takeout safely located on the pond end of the island. We made our first carry and came back to find the girls at the landing. Even though it is plainly marked on the topographical I still did not recognize that we were on an island until the girls mentioned they were planning to eat lunch on the rock above the falls on the left side of the trail.

Well it is a very large area so Dave and I decided that we would also eat lunch at this beautiful spot. In fact, even though we had only traveled 5 kilometers for the day, we decided we would spend the night there. We would enjoy the scenery and this would give the girls a chance to separate from us. It was here that later, in the woods, I came upon a mother spruce grouse with her babies.

Dave and I barely had our tents set up when a thunder storm rolled in. It lasted half an hour or so but I read and fell asleep. Before I came out of my tent Dave had already been fishing and had explored the river and falls on the river right side of the island. When I came out of my tent we went back there together. As we sat viewing the falls we were glad we had been content to cover just 5 kilometers today. In the distance we did travel we saw several bald eagles. This was the case on many of the days of this trip.

July 10
We left camp at 8:30. Our first task was a straight 5 k paddle heading northwest. Then we turned north east and finally west toward Brennan Lake. We did one portage, ran 2 rapids and saw one bald eagle before a 2:30 lunch.

The sky was blue as we made the long trip up Brennan crossing from topo 52J8 unto 52I5 as we went. We saw more eagles as we enjoyed this beautiful lake. Soon after crossing over to 52I5 there is about a 4 kilometer stretch that runs more east than north and is in some places as much as a kilometer wide. At the end of this large section of Brennan it first narrows to about ½ kilometer and then because of a pond stretching to the northwest it widens to as much as 2 kilometers.

As soon as Dave and I got to this widening we were in a different zone a strong wind hit us from the south west. It was not directly against us but nevertheless its strength made for hard going. Fortunately, we were able to duck behind some small islands where even though we were on the south west side of them the wind was greatly diminished.

As soon as we got beyond these islands the wind and the waves were of concern again. Because of this we headed for the far shore where frankly we could feel safe and from where we could have a look at the map to re-establish our exact location. As it turned out this was a fortunate move because from our resting spot we had a lengthy view of a woodland caribou.

Something had told me it would have been wise to set up our camp in the protected area behind the islands but we opted to press hoping to reach Brennan falls. Problem was it was far from clear how to get to Brennan falls. We considered a river that exited the pond to the south before heading west. It appeared to have a significant rapid right from the start. By this time the skies had turned gray and it was also well into the evening. Under these circumstances we decided against taking this river.

We paddled back to our other choice a stream exiting the pond in a mostly westerly direction. Before we decided just what we wanted to do a thunder storm over took us. Dave and I headed for the shore across from where our 2nd option exited the pond. There was some rock there which afforded some protection. We made our way to the back side of this rock. Here we stood as the storm attacked us. I remembered the thought of setting up camp back in the protected area. It was calm and sunny then – not much more than an hour ago.

Standing in that storm I asked Dave the question, "What are we doing here?" He answered something to the effect, "Well this is the safest place." He didn't understand what I was really asking. What I was really pondering was what was it about he and I that that drew us to a place like this. I mean some people I know have the idea that a nice vacation is to stay in a fancy hotel and lay around a heated swimming pool. I was glad to be where I was, storm or no storm, and I have no doubt Dave felt the same way.

As the storm subsided we experienced one of the reasons we were out there. We were treated to a rainbow. Awesome! But it was time to move. There could only be so much light left. Dave and I entered the small stream. We ignored the first turn to the right a dead end and entered the second.

This choice ended up involving several short portages and/or lift-overs. I wasn't at all sure this was the way the way or at least the ideal way. As darkness began to fall in earnest we considered a couple of class c campsites. We decided to take our chances for something better. Finally, we entered wider water. In no time we found an excellent spot on high rock above moving water. This was the river choice we had rejected where it entered into this pond.

As we hauled our gear to the top darkness had definitely arrived. And that was not all. It began to pour down rain. In an apparent attempt to beat the deluge Dave ended up setting up his tent right in it. Secure in my rain gear I opted to stay outside and enjoy the storm. Quite a storm it was. The rain came down in sheets. The wind blew and there was thunder and lighting. The lighting was close enough that at one point I suggested to Dave that his spot at the high point might not be safe. His reply was that if it is his time then it is his time. In other words, he was not planning to get out of his tent.

In time I rigged my rain tarp and set my tent up underneath it before moving it to a lower spot. I was fortunate to stay pretty dry. A tent can seem like a palace on a night like that. We had gone a little over 20 k today.

July 11
We woke up under a cloudy sky which soon gave way to sun and clouds. We were in a truly beautiful spot. I laid my sleeping pad out on the rock and did some reading and relaxing giving things a chance to dry out. Dave did the same and in addition was very happy with the fishing at the bottom of the rapid. Must have been about noon when we left.

Our camp was roughly 1.5 k from Brennan falls. We first had to get through a rapid that was a little trickier than first appeared. Heading straight toward the falls we began looking for the portage. One of the leaders of that girls group had been on this part of this trip several times before. I had asked her about this portage. She mentioned a large island and clearly said the portage was on the left. Dave and I scoured the left side. I got out and walked in the woods but no portage. We began paddling along the right side. No portage was in sight. Suddenly there she was. Not the portage the leader who had told me the portage was on the left. We called out to her asking where the portage was. Curiously she had to look around a bit before telling us where the takeout was.

In a few short minutes we would find out that she didn't know for sure where the takeout was because this was not the way they had gone at all. She had never been the way we came. Yesterday evening we had taken a right hand turn which after several portages had led us to the pond we come across to get to this portage. They had gone straight to the end of the stream and portaged across to the river on the other side of falls. They had then paddled south back up to the location of the falls where they were now camped and were spending a layover day.

Attachment:
Brennan falls portages.jpg
Brennan falls portages.jpg [ 105.64 KiB | Viewed 2988 times ]


Dave and I carried our load to the end of the portage and then took our lunch necessities back up to the scenic spot just above the falls. We stayed a good two hours. The area was full of fresh blueberries which we enjoyed with our lunch.

Getting back into our boats we said good-by to the girls group. They were clearly having a great time. Most of them were up in their camp sharing apparently hilarious stories. A couple of them were fishing and in spite of a lack of success expressed great content.



Video 1 covers Allenwater Bridge to Brennan Falls:


We found it to be about a two hour paddle from Brennan to Granite falls. The weather was excellent. It was about 7:00 p.m. when we approached the falls area. We were confident we would find the campsite open. To this point in our trip we had not seen anyone except the girls group. We were surprised then when we found a group of 7 or 8 or so people camped.
How did you get here? I asked. A lady in her 40s or 50s who was wearing a top of the line rain jacket and had sun screen visible on her nose emerged as a very talkative spokesperson. They had been flown in to this spot that day. By their account most of them were on their first wilderness canoe trip.

Our questions regarding their itinerary revealed that some of them thought they were going to eventually be flown out and some understood they were going to be paddling out. Well no matter, the trip leader, who was apparently back in one of the tents or out in the woods at that moment, he knew.

Dave and I were a tiny bit concerned about finding a place to camp before the shadows of night arrived. The nice lady with the sunscreen on her nose told us we could camp on the portage around the falls but there was no such luck. The portage itself was moderately long without a really close look of the falls as at Brennan. We found a nice campsite on the right side of the river about a half hours paddle after the falls. We paddled and portaged roughly 13 kilometers today.

My practice is to each night put my paddles in one of the annexes made by my rain tarp. For some reason this night I had a dream a nightmare that a beaver tried to enter my tent and ATTACK me. I think I woke up shouting at the beaver or something like that. Dave got a real laugh out of that in the morning.

July 12
As usual Dave was up and around before I was. I never mind that because it allows me to go through my what is all the racket out here routine when I do get out of my tent. This morning was another beautiful one made especially so by the mists rising off the water.

We left camp at 8:30 a.m. I was in a cautious mood today. We portaged around the first rapid which we likely would have run ok. The 2nd rapid of the day actually comes in two parts. Both have portages. The portage for the lower set is on the left. I continued my cautious ways on the 1st half as we did a little lift over at the top which allowed us to run down the right side of the river entirely avoiding the heavy haystacks and the rocks on the mid to left side. Two college aged paddlers from Minnesota caught up to us at this rapid. They didn't spend a lot of time looking at the rapid and so passed us by. After a quick scout, we ran the lower part of this rapid with no incident.

The third rapid we encountered today was about a class 4 or 5. It made a great spot for lunch. In this case it was a hurried lunch with no cooking as we were anxious to get to Wabakimi Lake. It didn't take long as it was a beautiful, calm, sunny day.
As we came up the dog leg that brought us into the lake we entered territory that is covered by volume 1 of the Wabakimi Canoe Route maps made available by the Wabakimi Canoe Project.

As we came to the place where we could see the expanse of the lake to the west we were thrilled that it was calm. What a stunningly beautiful lake! What a beautiful day! Dave and I shouted hallelujah as we gazed at the view. The fact that there wasn't a soul around didn't hurt any.

We easily paddled the 2 kilometers across the lake to the entrance to river bay. We took note of the fishing camp on the left as we paddled further up to an excellent camp site on the right. We were as happy as we could be. We had a great time swimming and relaxing. That night we were impressed how perfectly quiet it was. There was no wind. No waves. No birds. It was perfectly quiet. We had gone about 18 kilometers today.

July 13

I woke up very early. It was so quiet! About 5:00 a.m. a couple of White Throated Sparrow began to sing back and forth, back and forth. These are by far the song birds we most heard on our Wabakimi trip. Shortly there was the song of a far off loon that was quickly echoed by one nearby. Altogether it was a symphony. I fell asleep until 6:45 or so. There was not a cloud in the sky and there was no wind.

Eventually we shoved off and made our way up the bay. About 2/3 of the way up, there is a pond jotting out on the left side of the river. We weren't paying close attention where we were on the map and somehow concluded that this was our turn off. We paddled a fair way in before we realized our mistake.

It was a mistake that allowed us to see two bald eagles, one of them quite large. We also witnessed a large fish jump out of the water and we saw what appeared to be a marmot. It is hard to have a bad day out here. Back on the main bay we observed as six loons flew out of the water toward us. They flew past and then turned around and came right back over us.

Leaving River Bay we headed north on the river section that would take us to Kenoji Lake. Here we came to an 845 meter portage. We walked quite a ways up the trail. It veers a good bit away from the river. We concluded the rapid would not be easy to get a good look at and in any case it would be time consuming to scout.

About this time to our surprise the girls group showed up. The two leaders decided to walk the trail to the end and see what the rapid looked like at the bottom. Neither of them had run the rapid before. Dave and I made our first carry. As we walked back the two ladies came up behind us. They had decided they would pick their way down the rapid making use of whatever eddies they would find. Once we made room for them to pass they broke into a jog hurrying back to their waiting paddlers.

Dave and I made it back to the beginning of the trail in time to hear one of the leaders give final instructions to the girls. They were told the importance of having everything lashed in. Not one of the girls looked the least bit concerned about the rapid they were about to run. We watched as the last of the canoes disappeared around the corner.

My rule is I don't run anything I haven't scouted. But as I saw those young girls pushing off I was thinking to myself, Why are we portaging? Maybe I was being too cautious. But wait, I never run anything I can't scout. It looked so inviting. When Dave and I finished our second carry the girls were nowhere to be found. Wow, I thought, it must have been easy. They are long gone. I wondered a little bit how Dave felt to see the young girls float while we portaged.

We ran the next two rapids and made our way into Kenoji Lake. On this sunny day it was beautiful. We had a late lunch on the campsite at the entrance to the northerly arm that would eventually lead us up to little Scragg Lake.

We were confident most other travelers would turn east on Kenoji onto the Ogoki River as we knew was the girls plan. From our lunch spot we could see the fishing lodge a little further up on the left side of the bay but we expected we would be entering a more secluded phase of our trip.

After lunch we made it to the campsite at the top of the northerly leg. This is within sight of the swift as the route turns north-west. The wood left in the fire pit appeared to be several years old. It was Dave's turn to have first choice for his tent and he chose the excellent spot high above the river as he faced east. I could see that with a little saw work the area we were camped in would have room for lots of tents.

We had arrived at 6:00 p.m. and I was in my tent by 7:30. It was a pleasant night. Dave got out his fishing pole. For the first time of the trip I called my wife. It really seemed like calling another world but it was good to hear her voice.

At dusk a couple of fisherman surprised us as they came in their motorboat from the northwest, through the swifts, right past our campsite and into our arm of the lake as it were. I caught a glimpse of them from my tent. They started to head down toward the fishing lodge but then they turned around and made another loop in our direction. I thought they must have been surprised to see us as well. I figure we had gone about 15 k today and roughly 82 total so far.

July 14
We didn't leave camp until 10:00 a.m. My knee was hurting as we made the first portage. I didn't know then that I would end up having surgery on that knee. We could clearly see the results of chain saw work on this portage. At the next portage we pushed the canoe into the stream and made it fine after the first 15 yards. The third was a lift-over into little Scragg Lake.

Once on Little Scragg we came to a beaver dam that we that we needed to push the canoe over. The sky was gray overhead. It seemed perfect for the character of Scragg rugged beauty. We stopped for lunch at the top of Scragg. We had a few sprinkles.

We had a few portages to do as we exited Scragg. In the 2nd unnamed lake we came to we saw a family of four loons. One of the young ones appeared to be trying to learn how to fly. I wondered how my times these loons had seen humans. We watched them for quite a while before we paddled onto their lake.

We paddled by the short portage into the Grayson River before being stopped by the shallow water and dead fall. We had gone far enough however to look to the other side and see a moose. We quickly backtracked to the trail and made our way across with cameras in hand. He was just coming down into the water. We got a good look before he was spooked.

We paddled into Arril lake about 8:00 p.m. No baths tonight. Not 5 minutes after we were in our tents I heard the first thunder. Soon we were in a full-fledged storm. This campsite was nothing special but large enough for an army. We traveled about 16 kilometers today.

July 15

We choose to paddle to a better breakfast site. We found it on the rock between the larger and smaller ponds of Arril Lake. We noted the fishing lodge as we paddled by it. Like most we had seen it appeared to be empty. We woke up this morning to a totally cloudless sky. Clouds rolled in and the wind picked up as we ate breakfast.

As we left Arril Lake we chose to paddle the back way and avoid a 295 meter portage. That worked out ok at our water levels just a little walking in the stream as I recall. Later this day we were fortunate to see an otter. I was glad we had taken the road less traveled meaning taking the Grayson River to Whitewater Lake rather than the Ogoki.

The location of the 732 meter portage on the Grayson wasn't immediately obvious. I had to get out on land and walk little bit before I found it. I then noticed it was marked by an old kettle. This trail has wet spots and ends in a bog but it is not bad. We were excited to be nearing Whitewater Lake.

We experienced strong wind on the pond we entered after the long portage. Partly due to the wind we had to pull off the side to check the map as to exactly where we were at. The outlet into the next pond is narrow.

A little more paddling and portaging and we were on Whitewater Lake. We took the camp sight on the peninsula way up in the northwest corner of the lake. The wind was bad enough here. I was glad we were not out on the main lake. We had a late lunch and stayed put. The wind continued to howl. We had traveled roughly 11 kilometers today.

July 16

It had been a stormy night. When we woke up in the morning the wind continued to howl. I spent much of this day in my tent reading and napping. It rained off and on all day.

July 17

We woke up at 5:00 a.m. The wind was blowing even then but we decided to give it try. We headed out toward Poter Island and along its south west side. There were small swells. We made the crossing and then paddled mostly along the southern shore until we made it to the top of the long sheltered arm that leads to Secret Lake. We had made it. We stopped there and cooked our breakfast. From our vantage point on the rock we could look back to Poter Island. The wind was picking up and it misted a bit. We were glad we had left camp early.

We stopped and investigated the large, out of business, fishing camp located before the portage into Secret Lake. Wow! Somebody had big ideas.

From Secret Lake one paddles back out to Whitewater Lake at a place that is protected by an island dubbed Bills Rock. From here we could have paddled along the south west shore down to Best Island but remembering the way the wind was picking up I didn't want to have anything to do with it. Instead we paddled down to the portage into Rainbow Lake.

The paddle down this narrow area was in very shallow water. It was hard going. Our paddles pushed all too easily and all too deeply into the black silt underneath us. I would not have wanted to step into it. Fortunately, we had just enough water to make it.

Finally, we made it to the South East corner of Rainbow Lake where we would find the portage back into Whitewater Lake. But where was the portage? We double checked the map and looked at the reality before us. All we could see was blow down everywhere. We could not find the beginning of a trail. I went inland quite a distance and walked diagonally until I found a faint trail. It was useless because of the blow down but at least we knew what the map already told us we were in the right place. I made my way on until I saw water on the other side. We knew what we had to do. We first took our packs. We crawled over and under the fallen trees. Finally after several trips we carried and dragged the boat, again over and under fallen trees. In the end we decided it wasn't that bad.

As we paddled onto Bob's Bay and finally out onto the lake there wasnt a trace of wind. All was calm. We easily made our way to Best Island and Wendell Beckwith's Center of the Universe.

Wendell Beckwith is, of course, the individual who came to Best Island in the 60s and lived there until his death in 1980. He came to do what he called pure research and is purported to have believed, based on his research, that Whitewater Lake was the center of the Universe.

I fully expected to find others camped there, but we did not. We elected to camp right there at the sight. It is an excellent spot.

I took a quick look at Wendell's cabins before setting up camp. I decided I would inspect them on the following day. In the meantime we were thrilled to have made it to the destination of our trip. Whatever elsee can be said about the center of the universe it is quite secluded. We traveled about 16 Kilometers today.

Video 2 covers Brennan Falls to Whitewater Lake



July 18 - 20

Today we took a good look at Wendell Beckwith's cabins. I noticed the girl's group had signed the log book just one day before we arrived. We also decided that instead of paddling out to Little Caribou Lake we would relax here for a couple of days and be picked up by a float plane.

So for the next couple of days we relaxed. I spent a lot of time reading. Dave did some fishing. We did some paddling including a trip down to the fishing outpost owned by Mattice Lake Outfitters. We had an occasional group of fisherman stop by to see the cabins.

The early mornings were beautiful. The water would be perfectly still. The morning fog added to the beauty. On two separate mornings we were able to watch beaver swim about and dive. On one canoe outing Dave saw the babies. To a degree we forgot about the cabins in back of us. We spent most of our time on the rock at the waterfront. Whatever else can be said about Wendell he did choose an excellent spot for his hermitage.

One day we heard some voices coming from behind us. A group of paddlers had pulled onto the beach in the little cove north of the cabins. We could hear them as they toured the cabins. Eventually they came down to the waterfront. It was a group of 8 boys, two leaders in their early 20s and 6 young teenagers. We mentioned the girls group. As it turned out this group was from the same camp. We talked for quite a while.

I mentioned the 845 meter portage that Dave and I took around the rapid that the girls ran. One of the leaders said that we had made the right decision. He said they also took the portage. When they finished their carry however they noticed something in the rock garden at the bottom of the rapids. It turned out to be a pack. He said it belonged to the girls. I realized that if this was true the girls had trouble on that rapid. They likely hadn't passed us by but were somewhere up in the rapid when we finished our carry. Well we knew they were Ok but I looked at my decision not to run without scouting differently. I was glad I had stuck to my principles.

July 21

It was Wednesday July 21 about noon when we heard the plane. I was pleasantly surprised to see it was the otter rather than the beaver. I was also surprised to see it was Don Elliot himself piloting. They had picked up a pair of fisherman from one of their outposts- a father and a son. The father was using an oxygen tank.

We loaded and flew out of our paradise.

Video 3 covers the time we spent camping on Best Island



video 4 is a short tour of Wendell Backwith's cabins



Last edited by Ipaddle on January 13th, 2011, 9:48 am, edited 7 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 6th, 2011, 11:44 am 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:47 pm
Posts: 8936
Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Wonderful TR!

Thank you for using the 845. We worked hard on it a few years ago..with hand tools. It would be a shame to have it ignored though the reason for it is to enable upstream travel as well in case of a fire emergency.


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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 6th, 2011, 12:07 pm 
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Joined: February 10th, 2005, 2:36 pm
Posts: 210
Location: Southwest Michigan
Thank you for your work on the portage. It is still in good shape.

Glad you enjoyed the report.


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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 6th, 2011, 9:46 pm 
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Joined: January 22nd, 2003, 7:00 pm
Posts: 647
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario Canada
Congratulations on an awesome trip report and thanks for the endorsement of the efforts of the many volunteers of The Wabakimi Project who have worked unselfishly to rehabilitate and record these canoe routes. Hopefully our continued efforts to document all of the area canoe routes will entice others to visit and explore this wonderful wilderness area.

Barry Simon (aka 'Boneli') is currently working on the 21 maps that will included in Volume Three of his Wabakimi Canoe Route Maps. It will cover the Ogoki River and the majority of its southern tributaries that lie north of the CNR right-of-way and will be released in the next couple of months. An announcement will be posted on this website when it is available. For more information, visit our website (http://www.wabakimi.org).

Edit: Thanks to kingfisher for catching me up. The correction is in bold so new readers can appreciate the slip-up.


Last edited by Voyageur on January 7th, 2011, 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 7th, 2011, 11:24 am 
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Joined: July 3rd, 2003, 11:15 am
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Location: on the edge of the big blue
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Congratulations on an awesome trip report and thanks for the endorsement of the efforts of the many volunteers of The Wabakimi Project who have worked selfishly to rehabilitate and record these canoe routes

the power of "un"

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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 7th, 2011, 4:14 pm 
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Joined: February 7th, 2004, 12:37 pm
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Location: Guelph, ON
I think he meant "selflessly".

I happen to know that he has been working 24/7 since about December 10th, to negotiate better protection for our canoe routes up there, located on the Lake Nipigon, Forest Management Unit. :clap: :clap:

The Draft Forest Management Plan was released on December 10th for public review ....So a small slip on the key strokes in this case is understandable, even for a retired school teacher, who is most precise in his use of the language. :wink: :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 7th, 2011, 8:22 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
:oops: :oops:

I missed the missing "un".. there go my hopes to be an FMP proofreader though I thought I did ok on his Caribou FMP.

my mind is going... :rofl:


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 Post subject: Re: Wabakimi July 2010
PostPosted: January 7th, 2011, 11:45 pm 
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Location: Oshawa
I really enjoyed your trip report and videos, looks like a very special place. I also really liked your wife's video on dehydrated foods...looks like you guys ate well on your trip!

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