George Lake to Boundary Lake

CanadaOntarioGeorgian Bay coast
Submitter & Author Information
Route submitted by: 
Trip Date : 
Route Author: 
Additional Route Information
75 km
5 days
Loop Trip: 
Portage Information
No. of portages: 
Total Portage Distance: 
9400 m
Longest Portage: 
1975 m
Difficulty Ratings
River Travel: 
Not applicable
Lake Travel: 
Background Trip Info
Water Levels: 
Route Description
Access to Put-In Information: 

41 I/3 Lake Panache

Technical Guide: 

Start at George Lake access
Paddle Northeast on George Lake
P 80 m to Freeland Lake
East on Freeland to Kakakise Creek
P 1975 m to Kakakise Lake
Northeast on Kakakise
P 940 m to Carlyle Lake
South then east on Carlyle
Through narrow marshy stretch into Johnnie Lake
Camp on Johnnie night one.

Paddle Northeast, West, then North on Johnnie
P 300 m to Bell Lake
Northeast on Bell then North on Three Mile Lake
P 30 m over boat trolley to Balsam Lake
Camp on Balsam night two.

Paddle West on Balsam
P 665m to David Lake
Southwest the full breadth of David
P 565 m to Boundary Lake
Camp on Boundary night three.

P 565 m back to David
East & Southeast on David
P200 m to David Creek
East on David Creek
P 745 m to Bell Lake
Cross small bay on Bell
P 190 m to Log Boom Lake
P 50 m , 100 m to Johnnie Lake
South, then East, then Southwest on Johnnie
Retrace route back to Carlyle
Camp on Carlyle night four.

Retrace route from Carlyle to Kakakise and then to Freeland and George Lake access.

Trip Journal/Log/Report/Diary: 

Trip was completed in August 2000. Party of two. Some portages completed in one trip, others in two trips, others half & half.

Day One - 5 to 6 hrs travel time
Paddle 15 km, Portage 2995 m

This was a long day because we didn`t hit the water at the George access until noon after driving to the park that morning.

Nice views on George. Freeland weed-choked.
The 1975 m portage from Freeland to Kakakise was tough to find in a weed and log choked back bay. The new small signs didn`t help much. The portage also intersected with a hiking trail at two points - not marked on the map and a bit confusing - keep to the left! Otherwise a level, easy portage.
Nice views on Kakakise of the white ridges. Lots of planking/boardwalks on the 940 m portage to Carlyle
Option to drive over to the Carlyle access and launch from there. This would shorten the day and get you into the upper reaches of Johnnie. It is a bit discouraging to paddle and portage a few hours and then come out on Carlyle and Johnnie where there are cottages.

Day Two - 4 hrs travel time
Paddle 14 km, Portage 330 m

Upper Johnnie is beautiful with granite outcrops and views of the quartzite ridges.
Bell Lake very nice.
Three Mile and Balsam Lakes very secluded with a lot of marshy lowlands. Even though in mid-August we saw hardly anyone. Camp on Balsam. Very windy next 24 hrs.

Day Three - 4 hrs travel time
Paddle 10 km, Portage 1230 m.

Mid Balsam Lake island studded and marshy. Lots of wolf scat on portage to David.
David is beautiful with fine views and turquoise waters. Boundary Lake has only one campsite for canoeists (one for hikers). Nice site, great views of Silver Peak and ridges from the portage, very secluded feel. Lots of wildlife in this corridor between ridges. Wolf or wolves in camp that night.

Day Four - 5 to 6 hrs travel time
Paddle 17 km, Portage 1850 m.

Side trip off of Boundary - David portage part way up Silver Peak trail. Great views and pictures only 10 minutes off the portage. Need to be camped another night on Boundary or David to do whole climb to Silver Peak. Very pleasant, easy stretch from David down to Johnnie despite a lot of small portages.
Tough prevailing headwinds on Johnnie and Carlyle. A bit of a long day.

Day Five - 4 to 5 hours travel time
Paddle 10 km, Portage 2995 m.

Retraced same route back to George Lake. Not worth seeing a second time really. Long Option: Go Carlyle - Kakakise - Norway - Killarney - Freeland - George. This is much more scenic but replaces the 1975 m portage with two 1400 m portages in and out of Norway.
Short Option: Exit at Carlyle access and hitch a 10 minute ride back to George then come back and get your gear.

Maps Required
Other Maps: 
Killarney Provincial Park map published by Friends of Killarney - shows all campsites, portages, etc
Special Comments: 

This is a good route that lets you see much of the park with quite easy portaging. Because it passes by the Carlyle, Johnnie, and Bell access points, it also allows some flexibility to change plans on your first or last day due to weather or scheduling. The route passes some very quiet uncrowded areas such as Three Mile and Balsam Lakes. It also passes some of the more popular and beautiful areas of quartzite ridges such as around David and Boundary Lakes and Silver Peak.