Brousse (Outback)

CanadaQuebec04 Ottawa
Submitter & Author Information
Route submitted by: 
Trip Date : 
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Additional Route Information
58 km
4 days
Loop Trip: 
Portage Information
No. of portages: 
Total Portage Distance: 
1500 m
Longest Portage: 
350 m
Difficulty Ratings
River Travel: 
Lake Travel: 
Background Trip Info
Water Levels: 
Route Description
Technical Guide: 

Put in Northern end of Lac Ostaboningue
P into Lac Cook
P into unnamed Lac
P into Lac Robert
P into unnamed Lac
P intoLac Six Milles
P into unnamed Lac
P into Lac Des Six Iles
P into Lac Saseginaga
P into Lac Ecarte
P into Lac North
P into Lac B.L.
Enter mouth of Riviere Cerise
P into Lac Des Cinq Milles
Enter Lac Ostaboningue to take out

Trip Journal/Log/Report/Diary: 

From North Bay, Ontario go north on Highway 11, then take highway 63. At Temiscaming, go north on highway 101 for about 100km. Turn right 5km after St-Edouard-de-Fabre (route391 to Bearn). After gas station turn right to the "chemin de penetration". After 34 km,(good gravel road)you will reach the outpost closest to Ostaboningue lake. Here is where you pick up your permits (cash only/8am-9pm every day) I don't speak French and the nice lady there didn't speak much English, but we managed to figure things out ok. Here is where you need to copy down the campsites from the topo they have on the wall. The put in for "Route Brousse" is 6km from the outpost, she will direct you. The parking lot is used by fisherman to park also and very secure per my friend at the "Outpost"
From the put in on Lac Ostaboningue, you head south towards Baie Cooks. Here you take your first portage into Lac Cooks. Since most of the portages are easy, except for the 2 mentioned in the comments section, I will bypass a lake to lake discription. All the lakes where pretty, lots of white birch mixed with pine. I found it more like LaVerendrye than Temagami. The water and shore lines where clean. I did see one real nasty campsite, an island on Lac Ecarte had a dump around the back, a huge amount of trash was dumped along the shore. The shorline around Lac B.L. had some huge white pines. Some of the chutes from lake to lake looked runable, but I prefered to portage in most cases. Being solo, I was able to find rock outcrops to camp on, but I should repeat that group campsites are few and far between, so planning ahead at the outpost is very important.

Maps Required
Topo Maps (1:50,000): 
31/M2 Lac Ostaboningue
Other Maps: 
31/M1 Lac Ogascanane 31/L15 Lac Grindstone 31/L16 Lac Sairs
Special Comments: 

I found the web site for ZEC Kipawa , and made some phone calls and emails which gave me enough information to get started on plans for a trip into ZEC Kipawa. Some things that where helpful where:
The outpost where you buy your permits takes cash only.
Bring a topo for the route you plan in the ZEC, the map they give you is hand drawn and gives only what lakes you travel thru, you need to use your topo to find portages etc. They are supposed to have a map in the making for the ZEC/canoe routes but not when I was there.
Ask for rates for camping and fishing via email, then copy the response and bring that with you. The lady who took my money used this when she figured out what to charge me.($6.50 a day per person to camp, $87.00 for 7 day ZEC fishing permit, plus a provincial fishing lic.) Strange, but true.
On the wall at the outpost is a topo of the whole ZEC with campsites marked. Bring in your topo and note the campsites on your route, as they are few and far between for groups and this will be your only way to plan ahead.
If clear cut logging turns you off, this might not be the place for you. I saw a few areas from the canoe that where clear cut, and one portage went right thru a clear cut. I have no problem with logging, I actully walked a clear cut and found it somewhat interesting, to each his own. There are also a few cabins on this route, a few on the big lake where you put in, then maybe 3 or 4 more on the rest of the route. Also, some fishing power boats on the 2 big lakes, but I saw only 5 boats on a holiday/openning day of fishing the whole trip. I saw 1 other canoe, 2 guys going fishing 1 lake in. No other canoes after that, no other people on most of the lakes.
Hunting is a big part of the ZEC so I assume most of the large animals are shy, no moose, bear or wolf sightings, although scat for all 3 where common. The Riviere Cerise is a very pretty paddle, I really enjoyed it, very peaceful.
Most of the portages where short and level, very easy. The 2nd portage between Lac Robert and Lac Six Milles is thru a clear cut and over a hill, but not all that bad. When you get to the road on this portage, make a left and you will see the portage go of into the bush about 100/150 meters down the road. The portage between Lac Ecarte and Lac North is tough. It runs along a river that flows between the lakes. It starts out level, then drops down a rock slide to the lake below. Be careful here, you will probably have to line your canoe over some bolders like I did. Just hope it's not raining hard as it was when I came thru here. Nice group site on Lac North and good fishing just after this portage.
The fishing here should be very good, although I think I was a little early for walleyes and I didn't really try too hard to catch any, just trolled mostly