CanisbayLake To Iris Lake

Submitter & Author Information
Route submitted by: 
Trip Date : 
Route Author: 
Additional Route Information
20 km
5 days
Loop Trip: 
Portage Information
No. of portages: 
Total Portage Distance: 
4395 m
Longest Portage: 
2600 m
Difficulty Ratings
River Travel: 
Not applicable
Lake Travel: 
Background Trip Info
Water Levels: 
Route Description
Access to Put-In Information: 

The Put-In itself on Canisbay is a beach,and there is a Campground on Canisbay that might stop operating come Fall,but it does have the Paddle -In Sites as well.

Technical Guide: 

Canisbay to Iris Lake
Put-In at SW corner of CanisbayLake
Paddle N 2.7 km to Polly Lake
Portage(#1) 2600m
Paddle N 1.6 km to Linda Lake
Portage (#2) 920m
Paddle N Then NE total 1.3 km to Iris Lake
Portage (#3) 875 m
Re-traced route back out

Trip Journal/Log/Report/Diary: 

Departed on Wed 18th Sept, 2002 at 9:00am.

Drove 2 hrs. to Canisbay Canoe -In Sites.

Weather - sunny with Clouds, mild.

Took easy pace to Linda Lake including 5.5 km paddling and portaging over 3.5 km. Set up at Site 5:00pm.

Weather - Cooler, cloudy, slight SW wind. Forecasting scattered showers.

Departed Linda Lake for Iris Lake at 1:00pm. Paddled 10 min to the 875m. portage. Paddled approx. 1km to Iris Lake campsite, set up site and tarp by 3:00pm. Raining.

Day 3
Weather - windy, cool, showers. Forecasting Storms. Awoke for breakfast 8:00 am. Adjusted tarplines, washed out upturned canoe, gathered wood, relaxed, ate, relaxed.

Paddled around before dusk. Retired approx. 8:00 pm.(High Winds).

Day 4
Weather-Still raining off and on. Chilly, foggy. Forecasting scattered Showers. Awoke 8:00am for breakfast. Relaxed, took pics. Headed out fishing after short lunch at 11:00am. Out till dusk. Dinner and sleep approx. 11:00 pm. Winds calmer.

Day 5
Weather- Fog,slight breeze. Cool. Forecasting variable clouds and slight chance. Awoke 9:00 am

Ate small breakfast,went for a walk, took down the site, departed Iris Lake before noon.

Paddled back 1km to Linda Lake Portage 875m, and paddled approx. another 900m to campsite on Polly Lake.

Set up Site by 3:30pm and went fishing. Sunny afternoon, full moon today. Had good luck,ate fish, retired late about midnight stargazing.

Day 6
Weather - Foggy, calm, forecasting sunny periods.

Awoke early 6;00 am, ate small breakfast, went fishing, ate more and took down campsite by Noon.

Paddled back 10 min. to Canisbay portage and did the 2.6 km at a leisurely pace. Had canoe on the car after the fairly long paddle back to the Canoe-In Site Parking Lot by 5:00 pm.

Ate a Hungarian meal with an Ale and was back home at 9:45 pm, Sunday the 22nd.

Maps Required
Other Maps: 
Backroad Mapbook-Algonquin Region
Special Comments: 

Even though we always make sure we pack everything, we never get to leave nice and "early". After a few small delays, we were on our way north for Angela`s second trip to the PARK. After the drive to Canisbay Campground Office for permits,we conveniently drove right to the lake where there is a seperate parking lot for trippers and Day-Use. Winds were coming from the South so it was an easy paddle up Canisbay Lake.

Besides the Campground, there are numerous Sites on the west side and north. They all look big. The ones closer to the portage look more private though. Scenic shoreline and only one other canoe!

The Take-out was smooth,and we portaged our vessel and gear the 1st 300m to the Bike path(Minissing Trail),then strapped our canoe and stuff to a canoe cart. This was very easy, up the long, gradual hill and down to Polly Lake. The wheels worked quite well and we really saved time. A little tippy though in spots along this old bush road.

The Put-In at Polly Lake is a steep cedar-root bank, beware. And the landing is out off the rocks a ways this time of year. Soaker potential!

We by-passed 1 of 2 sites on Polly,but the second looked much better. This is a nice Lake with good scenery and view. We`ll stay here later, we decided.

After continuing on to Linda Lake Portage and stashing the `Wheels`, we headed up the trail and found it somewhat difficult. Felt like a Long 920 m! It was good to arrive at Linda Lake. Another smooth put-in here as well.

Bypassed the first two sites and went for the Island site for the Night. There is one more site closer to Iris Portage on the North end of the Lake too.

Linda Lake is pretty also, leaves starting to turn. Site is well used here but the view is great! Looking west, you can see where a creek flows in. We saw two different moose here the next morning. We also had good luck trolling in the afternoon along the rugged shorelines of the long bays in this lake. Noone else around...Didn`t set up the tarp and was ok for the night.

Next day,travelled on to Iris Lake for two nights. Weather is looking not so great!

Portage was rustic and a bit challenging. Put-In at Iris was tricky in the rain but it soon stopped enough before setting up the site on the NW end by the creek. It looks like they have moved the site recently because this one was obviously rarely used before. Not the prettiest site I`ve seen ,but very rustic, good view, and private. Tonnes of wood.

Weather was an issue for the next two days, so we relaxed and bettered the campsite somewhat. There must have been a good storm sometime here in recent years because of all the large blowdowns around this small lake. Gives it a lonely feel. A pair of loons reside here and periodicaly come and check us out. No trout to speak of, but we ate lots of food. The tarp in the wind at night was driving me crazy, what a racket! Looked forward to going back to Polly Lake for the last night and hopefully, friendly skies. Next day, ventured back out to Polly and alas, weather was looking up!

By chance, the campsite we chose a few days earlier was not taken! Yayy! Set-up with tarp,collected wood, rigged the rods and plopped in for a paddle around this beautiful little lake. Very scenic with varied shoreline and a narrows.

Had good luck and ate fish for late dinner under the stars. Awesome view and recipe! Oh yeah! forgot to mention the big bull moose we spotted back at the portage we came from 30 min earlier that day. Big antlers. That Bike trail must come pretty close to the NW side of the lake as well because we can hear them now and again.

Next day woke up early and there was an otter hanging around looking for fish remains. Kinda foggy so we had no chance to spot wildlife around the not too distant shoreline.

We packed up and regretfully said goodbye to this lake and set forth to reality, and launched off. We`ll be back.

Strapped on the wheels after the effortless paddle to the long portage,and trudged out to Canisbay fairly easily. The whole trip followed a good Itinerary,not too much work for a second-timer(Angela loved this trip just as much as her first!), lots of rest time,packed well.

Weather could have dealt us a better hand but that`s Her way. We were prepared for this, somewhat moderate trip, though it was not too difficult by any means.

Conveniently drove away and stopped for some sit down time indoors! Good food, and generally boring ride back home. My old `granny knots` were efficient in keeping the vessel aboard for the drive BTW!