The weather man lied to us. The plan was a nice loop from Canoe lake to Big Trout and back down the Pettawawa, Misty and McIntosh Lakes, then down Potter's creek. The last 5 days of the trip were supposed to be 13-15 in the day with lots of sun. What we got were 6 miserable days if high winds and rain. We also got sucked in by the early ice out. We thought, it's going to be an early spring. As a result we got to do some winter-like camping in the spring with lots of snow.
Here we are enthusiastic at the start of the trip. Sure there was going to be a couple of cold days, but for the most part it was going to be excellent.
We didn't see one person on the portage from Canoe Lake to Joe Lake. It was a nice warm sunny day. We had lunch on the portage.
We camped on the north shore of Joe Lake, the far western campsite
After a souvlaki dinner we went up to the Lookout for a view of Teepee Lake
The next day we headed up through Vanishing Pond (which was difficult). The reed beds were below the water in the south end of the creek, making it extremely difficult to follow the channel. We camped on Sunbeam, a very picturesque lake. We got lots of nice photos that can be viewed on our website. Here are just a couple:
We spent a rest day on Sunbeam and had steaks, asparagus, and baked potatoes for dinner
After a rest day on Sunbeam, we headed out over the portages to Burnt Island Lake. The portages were all full of blow down. Clearly, the rangers have not been through yet this year.
We got to Burnt Island Lake late and took one of the first campsites. It was to be the last of our peaceful and relatively warm nights.
We made a small move the next day to a campsite across the lake, but high winds and very rough water, plus a fully loaded canoe prevented us from going any further.
The next day we moved up to Otterslide Lake. From our campsite we had a great view of Venus in the night sky. A couple of guys we suspect were Park Staff scouting the portage blow downs camped across from us and left early the next morning.
Venus and the campfire across the lake.
There might be some great blueberry picking here later in the year.
We headed on up Otterslide Creek, more portages, more blow down.
It was a nice day to travel and we got couple nice pictures in the evening near sunset.
The second day on BIg Trout ended up being an unofficial rest day. We did some tarp building and fire burning.
The next day we woke up to very cold conditions and frost on the trees. A hint that the weather was not warming up and more cold to come...
With the wind still blowing and our friends on a schedule, we decided to abandon the part of the trip through White Trout, and head back down Otterslide Creek. A safer trip given the wind conditions.
We camped on an open windy campsite on Little Otterslide after being mislead by John's old park map on the availability of campsites at the bottom of the lake.
The next day, with the wind still unsafe to paddle we bushwhacked and portaged back to Burnt Island Lake
We had a beautiful sunset.
The next day we were winded in so we collected lot's of firewood and built a tarp, made poles from tree branches that had broken off the trees near the campsite.
That night it started to snow. We huddled under the tarp for the evening fire.
This was our tarp in the morning.
And our tent.
Guess what Tess is doing.
We broke camp anxious to get home.
Home at last.
All in all it was the kind of trip you are happy you did because you would never choose to do it on purpose (if that makes sense). Tess is most enthusiastic with how things turned out, John and myself less so but still okay, whereas Enid is going to sell all of her canoe gear.