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  1. #1
    Chard's Avatar
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    Canada>Central->EGL 2022 Spring - Paddle Back to Chicamoula - May 13-19th, 2022



    EGL Spring 2022 > Paddle Back to Chicamoula

    Hello all,

    It's been quite a while since an upcoming EGL trip has been posted on the forums. Between concern over Covid, a respect for public health guidelines/restrictions regarding outdoor gatherings, lock-downs and even park closures, I think we've been sensibly cautious with small gatherings. But now, being fully vaccinated and boosted, I feel like this might be the right time to resume something I've enjoyed so much over the years; trout, stout and a few good louts.

    It's with that in mind that I'm proposing "a scattering" or a "hang alone together" if you will. Algonquin's McIntosh is a fairly large lake with quite a number of campsites. If we book individually or in small groups, then we should be able to make social distancing a little easier. I've already booked for May 13-19th. At the time of reserving, the 13th was the earliest Algonquin was issuing backcountry permits.

    So hopefully we'll have some interest in this. It'd be nice to get the EGL up and running again.

    It'll be good seeing your responses either way.

    Cheers

    Last edited by Chard; 01-23-2022 at 12:44.
    Survival is about getting out alive, Bushcraft is about going in to live - Chard (aka Forest-Hobo)

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  2. #2
    Senior Member KeeWayKeno's Avatar
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    I'm in & permit obtained. Whet Newdell might be able to join in the fun (he's a LTV ... Lake Trout Virgin).

  3. #3
    Senior Member tollermama's Avatar
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    Hi All, I am interested in doing some paddling trips with you guys. I have been a very mild "lurker" over the years and sounds like you guys have lots of fun. I don't know much about the area you are talking about. Is this a large paddle in campsite that accepts multiple reservations at one spot? How does this work? I love canoe camping. Will the ice be out at that time? (I guess it would or you would not be doing the paddle) Would like some info. Thanks.

  4. #4
    Senior Member BigGreenMoose's Avatar
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    The fabled land of Chicamoula!

    The first EGL trip I ever considered joining. That year I chickened out, leery about meeting random strangers in the middle of the woods. That was a mistake!

    This year looks like the stars are aligned! So looking forward to seeing familiar friends and new faces alike! Truly a fun and welcoming group.

    I'm in, plus one at least. Permit obtained.

    I did some backtracking to find some earlier reports. Linking here for your convenience.

    2015 Chicamoula planning thread

    Bubba's 2015 Report

    Chard's 2013 Report

    McIntosh related report from 2018
    Last edited by BigGreenMoose; 01-23-2022 at 01:04.

  5. #5
    Senior Member BigGreenMoose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tollermama View Post
    Hi All, I am interested in doing some paddling trips with you guys. I have been a very mild "lurker" over the years and sounds like you guys have lots of fun. I don't know much about the area you are talking about. Is this a large paddle in campsite that accepts multiple reservations at one spot? How does this work? I love canoe camping. Will the ice be out at that time? (I guess it would or you would not be doing the paddle) Would like some info. Thanks.
    Hi Tollermama,

    Algonquin backcountry paddle-in sites are booked based on the lake you intend to stay on each night. Ontario Parks Reservations

    You pick your start date, your starting access point, and the lake(s) you want to stay on per night(s). This is personal preference, as you may choose to break up your trip by staying on different lakes, or get to one lake and stay there for the whole trip.

    The booking by lake system means you don't get to pick a particular site on a lake; there are a set number of sites marked on each lake, and once you make a lake reservation, the site you get is determined on a "first to paddle in, first served" basis. If you don't get your preferred site on day one, paddle by the next morning and you may find the occupants packing up and moving on, opening up options for you.

    Once you have a reservation on a lake, you can add up to eight more people to stay with you on your permit. They add fees per person and per parked car at the access point permit office before you set off.

    It seems a little convoluted, but once you figure it out it's pretty easy to follow.

    For this trip, the popular option is to start from the Canoe Lake Access Point (Grand Central for Algonquin), and wind you way north to McIntosh via Tom Thomson Lake and Ink L.
    It's doable in one day from what I gather, primarily paddling through well traveled lakes and rivers without needing to portage until you reach the north end of Thomson, where you have a 2.3 km (1.4 mile) hike to Ink Lake. Based on the trip planning/reports I linked to earlier in the thread, it's a long but not overly complicated portage.

    "Jeff's Map" is a popular map that's used by many in trip planning. This is one site that has it posted.

    Canoe Lake has lots of canoe and gear rental options available, as most of the local outfitters will deliver a boat to the access point, or you can rent (and pick up any last minute gear/souvenirs/lunch) right from the Portage Store at Canoe Lake.

    If you are planning to join the trip, say so here and we can share more details on the particulars via PM or email. Given the rona situation, we're spreading out on multiple sites to reduce any risks. It's a very fun group to join, and you'll get whatever help/advice you need, so don't be afraid to ask!

    Hope that helps!

    BGMoose

    p.s. This is planned opening weekend in May, and the ice-out reports are watched eagerly the week before the early Spring trips!

  6. #6
    Chard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tollermama View Post
    Hi All, I am interested in doing some paddling trips with you guys. I have been a very mild "lurker" over the years and sounds like you guys have lots of fun. I don't know much about the area you are talking about. Is this a large paddle in campsite that accepts multiple reservations at one spot? How does this work? I love canoe camping. Will the ice be out at that time? (I guess it would or you would not be doing the paddle) Would like some info. Thanks.
    Hi Tollerman, welcome aboard. Massachusetts is a long way off!

    To answer your questions, Algonquin books their "backcountry" permits by the lake, with the lake's actual sites being on a first come first serve. If you've managed to book the lake you're almost guaranteed of finding somewhere to camp. Ice-out; sigh... That's normally a critical question and has been the bane of many an early trip. This year the Park management has decreed that the "interior" opens on May 13th. Ice-out can happen anywhere from late April to mid-May. It's a crapshoot really and the park doesn't have the resources to constantly change permits as canoists played the ice-out game. Personally, I'm not in favour of their new solution, sometimes the old ways are the best ways, but that's best discussed with a scotch by a campfire.

    Before Covid, we'd all try to camp on the same site, share pots of stew around the campfire and share stories into the wee hours of the morning. Now, I'm afraid I'd suggest that we try to limit the sites to small groups only. Of course visiting would be encouraged by we should really take care. Frankly I'd hope that everyone considering attending would have already been fully vaccinated and boosted. I don't think we've lost anyone yet, but we have to keep our guard up until the threat of this scourge has passed.

    To get a feel for Algonquin, I'd recommend any number of YouTube videos, in particular those by Tumblehome.

    Hope to see you out there.

    P.S. LOL, BigGreenMoose beat me to the response but everything he said was spot on. If you have any questions, just fire away.
    Survival is about getting out alive, Bushcraft is about going in to live - Chard (aka Forest-Hobo)

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  7. #7
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    Booked for 13th-15th.

  8. #8
    Member BoundryWaters's Avatar
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    I’m new to Ontario as well and not too familiar with the Ontario parks system yet. Just for my better understanding: You all book separate permits and plan to stay at separate sites?

  9. #9
    Senior Member KeeWayKeno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoundryWaters View Post
    Iím new to Ontario as well and not too familiar with the Ontario parks system yet. Just for my better understanding: You all book separate permits and plan to stay at separate sites?
    Greetings BW! In Algonquin up to nine people can join a permit & share a site. When our group hangs exceed that number we try to find a couple of neighbouring sites. With the current situation (& several of us at elevated risk) our intention is to spread out a bit more, thus multiple permits & sites.

    It is worth noting that even when sharing a permit/site, each person is charged a camping fee at whatever rate applies (child, adult, senior). Further, only the first vehicle attached to a permit is included. Additional vehicles pay a parking fee.

    Can be a bit confusing, hope that helps.

  10. #10
    Member BoundryWaters's Avatar
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    Thanks much for the explanation KWK! Yes, a tad bit more complicated than what I’m used to for sure. If there’s somebody interested or feels comfortable enough to share a site I’d be happy to jump on that permit for a few days and pay whatever fees applicable ahead of time, so that nobody has to outlay any cashola on my account. Im fully vaccinated and boostered should that be of any concern and will be able to get myself there. I do a fair amount of solo camping these days, so it would be more of a social thing for me. If that doesn’t work then no worries as I’m sure there will be other hangs in the future…

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