View topic - Woodland Caribou Gathering Report - Lots of Pics & Video

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PostPosted: August 15th, 2011, 1:00 pm 
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Joined: October 11th, 2007, 4:39 pm
Posts: 677
Location: Red Lake
Well the 1st ever SoloTripping.com gathering / rendezvous was held on Glenn Lake in WCPP August 7-9, 2011 and turned out to be an amazing time with fellow solo trippers. Many thanks goes out to those that attended and helped organize the event, especially WalesWalker and Bob B. who were instrumental in ensuring this actually happened.

In the end, 6 solo trippers made the investment to get into the park and met at the campsite! We were looking at over 12 paddlers just weeks before the gathering but as happens more often than not, life gets in the way. I was very pleased at the turnout and we had a great bunch of guys with lots of experience and knowledge to share with the group....and not a mention of guns to be heard! |D

I must say that I was also impressed with the turnout given all the fire activity we've had up here including a very large fire that was in the north end of the park and caused visibility and smoke issues for the duration of the gathering....such is life in the Boreal!



The Attendees:

Jazzman, Marten, Bob B., Farmer, Harlan, & Hogan!


on to the report.......

My schedule was really tight, so my only option to get in was to fly into the gathering. This also allowed for some fresh steaks, fruit, and of course, refreshments!

Early on Aug 7, I rolled up to Viking Air and got ready for my departure. I was a little concerned over the smoke lying to the north, but Pilot Tim got working on the canoe and we got ready for the flight!

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Park maps come in handy for pilots too!

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As we taxi'd out, 4 other planes had been turned around due to smoke....we weren't optimistic but we gave it a go anyways hoping for the best!

Up in the air, the smoke cloud hovers in the distance.

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It really was an uncomfortable feeling when you sight is limited....still we found our way to Optic lake and began looking for the gathering campsite....here's pilot Tim banking hard in the Cessna....notice his firm grip on the "holy shit" bar!

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With the campsite spotted, we circled a few times, making sure of our landing spot and came into the beach adjacent to the campsite! Bob B. greeted us.

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Once the canoe was off the plane, pilot Tim turned the Cessna around and off he went!

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Not a minute later, a canoe was spotted in the distance....thus turned out to be "Farmer"

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Mu pup was quick to make herself at home......and helped herself to all Bob B and Skip'
s fish...sorry guys

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A few minutes later, Marten showed up with his trademark double blade!

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Marten's Prism with Glenn Lake in the distance. Note the smoke in the air.

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Jazzman also followed suit and had showed up within minutes as well. It was amazing to see everyone literally coming out of nowhere to meet on the site. A refreshment was in order.....gotta love Canadian Beer!

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After a few cold ones (perhaps a little warm), everyone settled in, setup their tents and hung out for a bit. After a few hours of lounging, Bob B. and myself figured on getting a few fish to add to our meals for the evening. For those that don't know, Glenn Lake is as good as it gets for walleye fishing. It took me 10 minutes to get my limit and I never left sight of the camp.....all in all it took me 11 passes over a 100 yard area to catch 11 chunky walleye. With 4 on the stringer, my work was done. Soon, Bob B. reported back with similar results...we would be feasting tonight!

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More time to lounge around.

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Our dinner for the night, waiting for the chefs to arrive....one thing about a gathering...there is no shortage of food!

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The chefs, Martin and Bob B.

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Bob B. had talked me into eating some boiled fish (new to me as I always fry), and capping it off with drinking the fish water.....you know, it's not that bad!

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Marten and Jazzman looking over their steaks.

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It rained and T-stormed overnight but we awoke to more blue skies and beautiful weather the next morning!

After a large breakfast of Steel cut oats, pancakes, maple syrup (thanks jazzman), coffee and the like, we all spent more time lazing around.

Suddenly a plane circled a few times then came in for a landing

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It was Claire, Assistant Superintendent of WCPP!

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Due to the fire, the park office took on the responsibility of making sure that paddlers knew of the current issues, where the fire was and provided up to date info.......1st class service if you ask me!

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Claire briefed our group with maps and documents on the fire.

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After a quick lunch, they taxi'd out and were gone....off to speak with other paddlers.

Some weather moved in that afternoon dropping a few bursts of heavy rain, but nothing significant.

Here's jazzman, emerging from the tarp looking out over ominous skies.

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A nice rainbow soon followed.

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More fish was in order so Bob B. and I did the duty once more....soon enough, another 6 chunky walleye would add to our dinner!

Farmer got to work on cooking up a batch of hashbrowns. Check out his stove......pretty neat little blow torch he had there

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Looking south from the campsite

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Thunderhead approaching to the north.

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We had a great dinner, with fish (fried and boiled), Strogonoff (thanks Skip), hash browns, and cantalope, cake and pudding for desert....everyone was stuffed.

Good conversation by the fire was the order of the evening, sipping on crown Royal and telling stories.....it was the highlight of my tripping this summer.

It rained again overnight, but once again the day broke without rain, although it was windy and cooler.

Bob B. looking south over Glenn Lake

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Our tarp city setup

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Marten holding court

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Bob looking out over the lake one last time before packing up

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My flight out was scheduled for 10:00 AM and everyone else had figured on leaving around that same time....everyone got busy packing up their kits

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Farmer with one of the paddles he made....awesome!

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Bob B. dropping Jazzman's Bob Special in the water

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Wenonah 16' Prospector, Wenonah Advantage, Nova Craft Bob Special and Wenonah Rendezvous

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Bob B's Nova Craft PAL....

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Group photo:

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Soon a Beaver buzzed overhead

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The departure

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Skip set to head down the lake

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Beaver coming in for a landing

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Pilot Russ beached the bird and it was time to load up.

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Inside the Beaver....all set for a windy and bumpy ride back to Red Lake

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Here is a short video of the takeoff out of Glenn Lake



Some aerial shots

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Video of landing in Howey Bay, Red Lake marking an end to my gathering.



Thanks again for those that made this an amazing experience. Hopefully the idea takes off and we can make this an annual event either in WCPP or another paddling destination.

Harlan

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http://www.redlakeoutfitters.com - WCPP's Premier Outfitter
http://www.wintertrekking.com - The Winter Trekker's Online Community
Check out my YouTube Channel - Search for username "Red Lake Outfitters"


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PostPosted: August 21st, 2011, 7:49 pm 
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Joined: September 8th, 2009, 8:29 am
Posts: 320
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Hello Harlan: Nice report. Great pics! Great job on the fishing! I am glad that the gathering was a success. Do you know the dimensions of the yellow tarp with the fire underneath it? Can the CCS tarps handle a slightly bigger fire than the one shown in the pictures without worrying about sparks?

Take care,
Cousin Pete

_________________

"Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to that arrogant oligarchy who merely happen to be walking around." - G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy, 1908



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