View topic - Two Creeks - Ice Out Expedition

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PostPosted: March 19th, 2018, 4:38 am 
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Joined: August 19th, 2007, 5:40 pm
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Location: Timmins
Envisioned as an exploratory canoe route linking two creeks -Grant's & Bissetts- flowing from the Algonquin Dome to the mighty Ottawa River, it seemed like quite the amazing adventure. A +13km ‘portage’ linking the creek systems was supposed to be one of the greatest challenges, but we would soon learn environmental conditions were to be our greatest foe.

It was late April and the lakes and rivers of Southern Ontario were ice free. However, as we drove north, we witnessed a lingering winter. Conditions rapidly deteriorated within 50km of our put-in; frozen lakes and patchy snow in the bush. As we were primarily paddling creeks, we were less concerned with the iced lakes and snowy woods as the creeks were in a full torrent of ice-free melt water.

Pushing our way upstream against the heavy spring flow was slow and arduous, but we were making progress. As we neared the first portage, we were greeted with an unwelcome sight; a path blanketed in over a foot of snow. Postholing under the burden of laden pack and canoe we made slow progress as every step was met with a hefty drop in the snow. Things got worse as we made our way further up the creek. We were gaining elevation fast as we bypassed countless waterfalls. Consequently, and much to our dismay, the snow depth was increasing. The expedition was beginning to appear futile as we attempted a rugged (read: not been used in decades) portage littered with blowdowns and waist deep snow. The 585m bushwhack slog took us over 3hrs.

By the second day we were kilometers off the preplanned goal. Stubborn, determined and with a degree of slight optimism, we forged our way deeper up the creek towards the headwaters. Little did we know, the worst was yet to come....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYWKUm1i06Y


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PostPosted: March 19th, 2018, 8:17 am 
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Joined: September 3rd, 2001, 7:00 pm
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Location: Picton, Ontario Canada
Really enjoyed your video!!! I laughed many times as I watched the struggles...& was glad I wasn't on that particular adventure! :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: March 19th, 2018, 8:52 am 
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Joined: July 12th, 2010, 7:44 am
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Location: Barrie Ontario
Brad, in reply to your youtube channel (not sure how to post a pic in the comments section)

Never made it that far up the creek but this was Labour Day weekend 2016 and just a day paddle exploring.
Here is the GPS track.
ImageBissett Creek GPS by Rob Howes, on Flickr

and where I ran out of water
ImageCreek out of water by Rob Howes, on Flickr

In conversation with the girl in the A.P.P. Office she mentioned that one of the camps travels Big Bissett Creek every year or two so travel on the creek should not be that bad if you have water.

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PostPosted: March 19th, 2018, 3:14 pm 
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Joined: February 10th, 2008, 4:41 pm
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Great to see people doing hardcore stuff.
It doesn't always have to be fun to be fun.
Keep going. I like your bush-thrashing adventures.


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PostPosted: March 21st, 2018, 1:54 pm 
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Rob H wrote:
In conversation with the girl in the A.P.P. Office she mentioned that one of the camps travels Big Bissett Creek every year or two so travel on the creek should not be that bad if you have water.


Thanks Rob!
Now that's interesting! I wonder if they paddled the entire creek from Reed Lake? I know parks went in and cleared up the section from Big Bissett to the forest road bridge a few years back. So there appears to be at least 50% maintenance. If it is clear the entire way downstream from the headwaters to the Ottawa, I'll be pleasantly surprised.

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PostPosted: March 23rd, 2018, 1:36 pm 
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Location: Barrie Ontario
Stajanleafs wrote:
Now that's interesting! I wonder if they paddled the entire creek from Reed Lake? I know parks went in and cleared up the section from Big Bissett to the forest road bridge a few years back. So there appears to be at least 50% maintenance. If it is clear the entire way downstream from the headwaters to the Ottawa, I'll be pleasantly surprised.


By what I remember of the conversation, it was one of the camps from Highway 60 and she mentioned that they travel through every year or 2. I do not recall if they came through Black Bass or Reed.
I have heard of a few people travelling from Big Bissett North and again not sure but I think Jeff Mcmurtrie may have done that route a few years ago.
Not much information but hope it is of some help.

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PostPosted: April 9th, 2018, 6:00 pm 
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Joined: June 23rd, 2011, 7:32 pm
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That's some crazy-ass stuff!


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