BWCA August 2009 Wabakimi Paddlers Wanted Boundary Waters Group Forum: Wabakimi
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distinguished member (317)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/12/2009 08:23AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
Dave I thought I would post a separate thread just so that it stands out more that we are looking for some paddlers. Dave posted on another thread that he is looking for 4 total paddlers for Wabakimi. (I will paste some of the information from the other thread.)

I did this in case I post some photos from the last trip to give people a visual taste of the area.

Here is the info from the other thread:

Dave’s Inquiry:

august 8, 21 days, up onto the albany and back down the east side. option to fly in, train in, paddle in. 4 max, fit and experienced only. swifts, lining, rugged portages including crossing the height of land and ass deep bogs. great canoe country and lightly traveled.

this trip is open for 4 weeks. if it can be filled and organized in that time frame, we'll move forward. if not, i'm headed another direction. i'm paddling august somewhere north.

i'm traveling to the arctic mid may to mid june and will be out of contact, so that's the reason for the 4 week time frame.

CIIcanoe’s response:


I take it the Arctic trip isn't a canoe trip? Where are you headed? How was Florida? I wasn't able to go this year because of work related stuff.

I may be interested in this trip? I'm on call at work the whole week prior to August 8th and that week-end? I would need to switch weeks at work with someone if I was to go. I would prefer paddling stern, so I would probably have to buy another canoe depending on who else went and what canoe they had. I know my Minnesota II wouldn't withstand the rugged terrain.

Chuck Edit: This trip would work out better for me to begin the next week-end, August 15.

Dave said:

canadian and alaskan arctic not a canoe trip, but high adventure none the less. beemer and i are going by motorcycle to inuvik, deadhorse, and many other points between. those are the two most northern roads. camping all the way including griz country. 3500 miles of gravel roads in the mix, about 14000 total. i'll probably link up a report on the ride.

spent almost a month in the panhandle. relaxing with good weather. walked 6 miles a day and still came home fat. obviously, i spent quite a bit of time cooking on the grill.

15th would be ok. we would have to fine tune the dates depending on how we go in. the train schedule was reversed east/west and departures are now 10:30 pm. i've been seriously looking at flying in and paddling out. weather is pretty dependable in that time frame and the bugs are almost gone.

the proposed route is as we discussed fireside and takes us down to a temporary bear camp on the east side. from there we can catch a truck shuttle out. east side route goes through the highest concentration of pictos in ontario. 21 days, look at your maps and see what you think. we cross the height of land twice. email me.

paddle stern if you want-makes no difference to me. i paddled bow for 8 days straight on the savant last season. kind of a change of pace. the stern wasn't much different weight than you and we made decent speed.

got a 1050sw, but i don't think i can keep up with you. going to test drive it on the arctic trip.

CIIcanoe: Just sitting back thinking about having some coffee in Wabakimi!


CIIcanoe Canoes Wabakimi

Dave replied:

that old fire blackened pot on the grill was from the camp up on the narrows. a timeless image, you should have put it in for photo of the year.

the spruce wood flames are dancing three feet above the firering and is a picture formed of memories of a thousand campfires in the past.

we were burning wood i had left there exactly one year earlier and no one had touched in the interim.

...and in case anyone wonders why i much prefer to cook over an open fire, the answer is in the photo.
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04/12/2009 05:15PM  

Good idea. My posting had dryed up. Might be less confusing to call me 'dl', since we have two Dave's in this link.

Since I hadn't seen much response ref. a trip to Wabakimi for 2009, I set up a Quetico trip for early June and a early September trip for the south-east corner of Superior National. The Quetico is about a 100% confirmed trip with my daughter. The September trip is 50-50 right now and I will know on it, one way or the other, within the next few days.

Wabakimi and the Hunters Island Loop are on my list for either '09 or '10 - then on to northern rivers.

I'm good in the bow, always open to suggestions about my canoe skills!, great cook's helper and clean-up guy and; I think, I pack across a portage with the best of them.

I have a MNII (sounds like it might be iffy for this type of trip), Duluth packs (w/front portage packs) and the usual gear.
distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/12/2009 08:48PM  
glad you're considering the trip. the trip is not at all like paddling the border, but it's not the nunavut either. the trip right now is about 275 miles and travels across crown land, wabakimi pp, and albany river pp. some gear and common practice you may have used in bwca or quetico is not well suited to travel further north. i think we have the gear pretty well sorted for boreal forest travel and can assist you there. we will be in various river systems most of the route and will be dealing with fast water more days than not. this is not a whitewater trip, however. we portage anything big. so interlake, river, big water, fast water, lining, all kinds of portages-great canoe country.

you must be fit. we will be passing through some sections that will be more rugged than our 08 trip. not impassable, but rugged. if you read chuck's summary of the 08 trip, you get the idea. that's why we go. if we wanted less, we would paddle the border.

did i mention we like to eat really well....

distinguished member (317)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/13/2009 07:37PM  

distinguished member (317)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/14/2009 08:58PM  

distinguished member (317)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 08:03AM  
I can't believe there aren't a couple "experienced" paddlers out there who aren't considering this trip. This is the time to speak up, not after the fact. An opportunity like this doesn't come along all too often. Last year was my first time to Wabakimi and I found this place to be a very enjoyable place to paddle. Wabakimi provides an opportunity to practice your paddling skills. Although this isn't a technical paddle this trip will provide big water, fast water, lining & tracking, etc. The bug population will be down or non-existent. Dave is a great wilderness cook to boot!

For the right person (2 more) this trip should be on your to do list and here is the opportunity.

If there are any questions post them…

04/15/2009 09:49AM  

I have confirmed both my trips (June and September) and will have to take a pass on this trip for 2009. This trip continues to be high on my list and I would like to remain open for 2010.

distinguished member (312)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 02:26PM  
Hi Dave, Hi Chuck,

I would be all over this but I will be delivering babies in August. Hope you find somebody smart enough to take the opportunity. In the future I expect I will be taking fewer trips into the BW/Quetico and more in the parks that are further North.

When I am done with residency (5 years from now) I will harass you guys into taking me up there with you.

distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 05:34PM  
mark, i figure you'll end up a real wealthy MD so i think you should buy a float plane. i would suggest a turbined otter, then we can all go with you. if you need suggestions, i have some places in mind.
distinguished member (312)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 07:06PM  
I actually did "dream" of buying a float plane when I was all grown up but my divorce put the Kibosh on that one. One of my high school buddies is an F-16 pilot in the Air National Guard in Duluth - he was going to be our chauffer but I think I will just have to pony up and pay strangers to fly me.

On a more serious note - I bought a Bell Northshore from Midwest Mountaineering this spring. It normally went for just over $3,000.00 but was on sale for $2,500.00

It is 20'6" and has 4 seats. I think it would be perfect sized for 3 people. With 3 strong paddlers it should absolutely fly. Packing efficiently could mean single portaging (I am pretty sure I can handle a pack + the 60lb canoe).

So if you and Chuck are still available in about 5 years - I think we could probably cover a lot of water this way.
distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 08:24PM  
18' limit on via rail or they charge freight. might be too big to fly on the floats except in ideal weather. further north, and mainly due to weather, you might have to abandon your boat in the bush just so you can fly out. byebye $3000.

sounds like a neat boat for you and your boys.

i don't think chuck paddles anything he can't race. so if we paddle a pair of q18.5, we race those.

don't give up on that float plane because we've kinda been counting on you. wait a minute, i just added up the numbers. when you finally get into the big money, i'll be 90.
distinguished member (312)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/15/2009 10:04PM  
yeah its gonna be awhile before I am going to make anyhting and who knows maybe it will be socialized medicine by then. Lucky for me I have inexpensive tastes - canoe trips make for inexpensive vacations.

Have you ever looked into Opasquia Provinvial Park? I was just browsing the net - says it has a sizeable wolverine population.
distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/16/2009 06:02AM  
our trips have been pretty inexpensive in both absolute and comparative terms for what we're doing and where we're going. it helps to be self outfitted and we do our own route planning. i see an outfitter with guided trips into the same general area we're going in 09. our cost per man is 15% or less of his price per man. plus we'll have better boats, better gear, better food...better everything, and cover twice the country.

the big cost factor that comes into play as we work our way north is float plane service. you're going to fly, and that's when the trips aren't cheap. pay to play, and do it soon. i've said it before, the north is being developed at a staggering rate compared to say development over the previous 100 years. see it before it's gone.
distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
05/03/2009 08:12PM  
cut off date for this trip is the end of this coming week due to the previously mentioned scheduling constraints. great canoe country on this year's route. caribou forest, wabakimi and albany river provincial parks.

"hommes du Nord" should sign on now.

2010 route hopefully will be farther north of wabakimi as we follow river systems to hudson bay.

distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
05/06/2009 08:03PM  
going, going...gone. sign on period closed.

watch for the trip report and more outstanding photos from chuck.

this is a challenging route and the various sections have been used continuously for trade and travel over centuries. kind of incredible to portage past those old blazes that have been there such a long long time.

this is an august trip, but the gear is sorted and ready to go!

in the meantime, i'm off to the arctic. the tent for that trip is set up in the living room as i write. adventures ahead.
distinguished member (317)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
05/07/2009 07:06AM  

Good luck on your travels. Just remember the tent when you walk out the door! Are you taking a Sat phone on your trip?

This thread has been very quiet. I guess no one was up for the adventure.

I'll be leaving June 10th for Grand Rapids Minnesota to shorten my drive day on the 11th to Red Lake. I plan to meet up with Claire to go over some points of interest on my route or close by. I am gong to add more distance and go further west. Once I receive my topos I will fine tune my route.

I have corresponded with Claire by e-mail and she has my arrival date marked on her calendar.

I'm looking forward to our travels in August.

distinguished member(697)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
05/07/2009 07:10PM  
thanks chuck. no sat phone, but will have the spot going in tracking mode. beemer will be linked in also so everyone at his place can see where we are.

you can see on your overview map the route west to the manitoba border that i suggested. that's the way i would go. i wouldn't expect to see many out that way. the route back east has many options.

i met claire at their temporary office at the firebase in may 08. as a courtesy, i paid her for an overview map that they had sent out to me free. she might remember.

you going to use albert for any services? i would ask both albert and claire for ideas on a long range trip originating in the red lake area.

no info from you know who yet. i'm going to email again.

i'll call your cell next week.
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