View topic - Trip Info?: Wallace to Artery to Family to Leyond River

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PostPosted: July 26th, 2015, 9:55 am 
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This trip has unexpectedly become a real possibility for August, possibly leaving July 31, so I haven't had time to heavily mine the internet for info ... any hints and notes from the community welcome. The trip would be leaving Wallace Lake, heading north through Obukowin to Artery, then to Family Lake via Hobbs, Irwin, and Dogskin. Then heading to the Bloodvein road crossing via the Leyond River. I have the Real Berard maps and the Hap Wilson and John Buchanan books, and for context I don't do whitewater (esp. not solo) and prefer to enjoy the scenery rather than push hard to cover ground.

In particular:
Anyone have reasonably up to date info on the Siderock to Obukowin portages - cleared, wet?
Anyone with clarification re. the connections from Family Lake to the Leyond (esp. portages from Hangar Lake to Leyond)?
Reasonable time estimate from Family Lake to Bloodvein road via Leyond?
Any info on water levels in the area now?
Anything I should watch out for, trouble/tricky spots, hard to find trails, etc?

Any info would be helpful, if not I'm sure I'll muddle along with the info from the maps and books.

Cheers,
Glen


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PostPosted: July 27th, 2015, 11:44 am 
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Hi –

I have no current information personally, but some of this may be of use.

A “this year” description of the Craven – Ford – Artery portages on page 3 of this thread in “Canoetripping”.

http://www.canoetripping.net/forums/for ... vein/page3

A description of the Obukowin portages here in “Canoestories”.
The Obukowin portages were changing even years ago when I used them in the 1970s, and are certainly different now than they were on the Berard maps.

http://www.canoestories.com/obukowin/ob ... rtages.pdf

I travelled your Artery to Dogskin route segment in reverse (starting in Dogskin) in 1979. I don’t know what fire, wind, and snow have done to it since, but I can say that at that time the Berard map was an accurate depiction of the route and that the portages were in generally pretty good shape.

The first part of that route north of Artery is in or on the border of WCPP – have you contacted them for information?

Good luck – that strikes me as a very interesting route.

-jmc


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PostPosted: July 27th, 2015, 3:24 pm 
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Thanks for the info links jmc.

I've found Marten's info is always good and helpful.

I'll ask the WCPP folks for conditions when I order my camping permits, but I was told in the past that the Artery - Dogskin route gets semi-regular use so the trails should be there, and hopefully cleared some since the storm in 2012.

And I certainly hope it's an interesting route!


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PostPosted: July 27th, 2015, 7:58 pm 
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Marten headed into WCPP last week with the intent of using the Mothers. There has been a fair amount of rain through the area lately but prior it was very dry so they may be only mildly wet at the moment. Most smaller rivers up that way are quite low and even a heavy rainfall will drain quickly.

Sounds like quite the trip you have planned.


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PostPosted: July 29th, 2015, 10:32 am 
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Another trip report:

http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtop ... 14&t=27213

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PostPosted: July 29th, 2015, 3:20 pm 
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Thanks mobax, that trip report was part of what convinced me to include the Leyond. Too bad the photos don't show up anymore, or at least I can't see them.

And thanks for the info about Marten Mihun09. I'm guessing after he's done the "3 mothers" they'll be marked and followable ... hopefully the rain lately hasn't turned them into a swamp and muck walk.

Perhaps I'll have to post a trip report after I get back ... often mean to but never seem to get around to doing it.


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PostPosted: July 29th, 2015, 6:32 pm 
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HT:

Franz Mock (CCR board name fmock) did the Leyond River in 2001 or 2002. I recall a trip report from him, but I might have obtained that in a private email. Could not find his trip report here.

I recall that the sole issue he had was navigation just before the Leyond headwaters: you may want to do a bit of research on that.

The trip report above accurately describes the Leyond as "intimate". That's accurate, it's not a broad waterway. In the mid-nineties I snowmobiled the Leyond from the Old Winter Road crossing, 25 kilometers to the confluence of the drainage from Kameshekamak Lake, where I had a cottage. Just loved those trips.

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PostPosted: July 30th, 2015, 1:56 pm 
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Thanks again mobax. I wonder if that trip report you refer to does exist somewhere ... I recall reading and made a note of exactly that issue of finding the last portage on the route from Family Lake to the Leyond. The only info I've been able to find on that short route from the Pigeon system down to the Leyond is from the Berard maps. Hap Wilson's Leyond map shows a portage heading north from the Leyond "to the Pigeon" at the same spot as on Berard's map, so I guess I'll go with that.

A cottage in that country must have been delightful, and sure must have been nice to get to visit the area in the winter!


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PostPosted: August 19th, 2015, 8:56 am 
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I entered the Obukowin portages on July 21. I found only a few really wet spots (not counting the floating bog sections that will never go away.) The trails were all open but I did cut a lot of small trees hanging over the trail from the 2012 snowdown storm. Beavers have built a large dam at the near the north end of the first portage from Siderock Lake. This allows putting the canoe into the water and paddling about 300 meters to the next beaver dam. After getting over this long established berm of a beaver dam you encounter a few hundred meters of floating bog. I handled it by pulling my canoe as my weight depressed the bog enough to float the canoe. The start of the second portage is also floating bog but it has been walked so much that I was able to push my way through most of it while sitting in the canoe.

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PostPosted: August 30th, 2015, 2:30 am 
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Attachment:
obu#1 (800x529).jpg
Attachment:
obu#2 (800x529).jpg
Attachment:
obu#3 (800x529).jpg
The UTM's in the maps above are NAD27. They show the three portages from Siderock Lake to Obukowin. This a link to a video I just put together using info from my 2004 and 2015 trips through the Obukowin portages.[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkQwiIxoo7E[/youtube] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkQwiIxoo7E


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

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PostPosted: August 30th, 2015, 10:39 pm 
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I loved the video Martin! I really regretted not taking more pictures on the portages from Wallace to Artery. The only two I took are of the beginning of the portage between Craven and Ford:

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/113427804
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/113427823

Was your site on Craven the one in the pictures below? I absolutely loved that site! See the Google Earth location on the right of the page:

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/113427916
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/113427893


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PostPosted: August 31st, 2015, 7:28 am 
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Neil, I suspect that you used the old portage start at Craven to Ford portage. There is a new route cleared that avoids that bog. It should have started further west than the old wet trail. The flagging on the tree should not have been on the abandoned tree so I am confused. Others have been through and should be able to say. The new park map shows the new portage further west than the location shown next to your image.

That is the campsite I used. A fantastic place to spend some time on a canoe trip.

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PostPosted: September 8th, 2015, 1:03 pm 
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Well I made it from Wallace Lake to Family Lake, a lovely trip with only mild unexpected adventures, but postponed the return trip to the Bloodvein bridge via the Leyond until next year. I tweaked a lower back issue along the way and didn't want to take any chances, esp. solo, plus the water levels at the end of August were looking a bit low and I've heard the Leyond headwaters can get choked with rice and other grasses later in the season. So instead I spent a week camping on Family and Night Owl (where the Berens exits Family Lake) Lakes and then stowed my canoe with friends in Little Grand Rapids First Nation and flew back to Winnipeg. At least I know where I'm going next canoeing season.

Marten -- Thanks for the trail clearing! I went through the Obukowin portages about a week and a half after you and found them much better than expected, easy to follow, mostly dry, and cleared of deadfall thanks to you. I did all three in one day, which I would not do again, especially since there's nice spots to camp on the second trail. But much clearer and more navigable than a couple of trails I encountered north of Artery. And thanks for the video, I also didn't take any portage pictures, too focused on the task at hand I guess, so I'll be forwarding that link to friends and family.

Neil -- I concur with Marten, the new portage from Craven to Ford is clear and dry and to the west of where your photo is marked.


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PostPosted: September 8th, 2015, 3:17 pm 
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Horsetickler, I would sure like to learn more about the country you explored. I want to start spending some time getting familiar some of that Manitoba paddling. Have plans with others to clean the Broadleaf access to Aikens and the Gammon and will push further north if there is time.

It seems when the going gets the toughest (and the most interesting) the camera stays packed.

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PostPosted: September 8th, 2015, 4:32 pm 
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Marten, after years of paddling in Woodland Caribou Park, which is a wonderful place, I've only started exploring in Manitoba the last few years, but I've not been disappointed. Of course on the east side of Lake Winnipeg, esp. as you head west, the small lake and creek character of much of Woodland Caribou country gives way to lower relief and larger rivers. But so much to explore! I've done the Wallace to Broadleaf to Aikens route a few times and always really enjoy it.

If I don't get a trip report together (already swamped trying to catch up after being off for a few weeks) or you have any questions about the route I took don't hesitate to message me.


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