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PostPosted: December 15th, 2007, 9:34 pm 
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Joined: March 19th, 2007, 12:17 am
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Can anyone direct me to a good source of maps useful for canoeing the Dease River? Also, if you have canoed the Dease and have any special comments or watch out situations to share, I'd appreciate it. Thanks!


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 Post subject: Dease River
PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 11:39 am 
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Joined: June 19th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Greenwater, Washington USA
We did the Dease in September 2007 using 50,000 scale monchrome maps. I colored them in using green and blue pencil. We also had 250,000 maps. Great trip, scenery, wildlife. Some stretches don,t have a lot of campspites. Began at Sawmill Point Camp. Nice spot. Left car there. Good history read is RM Patterson's Trail to the Interior. Shuttles are availible at Dease River Crossing Lodge. Whitewater is C2 max at normal levels. Four Mile--run riight side. Two Mile--run center or line right.

Enjoy.


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PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 8:30 pm 
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Joined: August 20th, 2007, 10:46 pm
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Location: Smithers
The Federal Government has recently released all 1:50 000 and 1:250 000 NTS maps for free on the following website under the name CanMatrix:

http://www.geogratis.ca/geogratis/en/pr ... lookup=nts

They are available as GeoTiff or PDF. The GeoTiff can be read in a georeferenced format by a number of free viewers, and OziExplorer can be configured for them I think.

_________________
Cheers,

Aaron


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PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 8:44 pm 
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Joined: October 2nd, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: seattle, Washington USA
I use Canadian topo maps 1:50,000 scale, as well as a couple of 1:250,000. drlang is correct that RM Patterson is a good source for the history. Warburton Pike's book is very good. Dawson's report is good as well. Especially interesting, is Robert Campbell's report. He was the second European to see the area and spent a disastrous winter there.

Dennis at Dease River Crossing can do a shuttle, as well as the fellow at Dease Lake RV.

You can start opposite Laketon townsite which is an interesting historic place. Mike Swenson is a nice fellow with the big log house just south of there. Be sure to check out the memorial to Pike at Porter Landing at the north end of the lake.

drlang is correct that some places are a bit spotty as far as campsites, but I would say that I've seen worse on other rivers. The upper river is marshy, and in high water, finding a good camp is more difficult. On the upper river, a small clean cabin is available RL on a right hand bend with a large white rock gravel deposit on about a ten foot high bank. A gravel bar opposite Packer Tom Creek is good spot. At Dease River Crossing, you can camp or stay in one of the Beiber's cabins.

Rapids are fairly straightforward, the two harder ones being Four Mile and Two Mile. After the latter, you should track and paddle(or pole) inside an island on RR of the Liard to get high enough to easily ferry across the Liard. Note also, that Stone Island Rapid is mismarked on maps as being further down stream than it is. It is just after a right hand bend where the river narrows. In high water, there is a potentially nasty whirlpool just behind the island.

There is a trail leading up to the Horse Ranch Range from near Boya Lake, though its hard to find.

If you want more info, especially regarding good campsites, let me know as I've noted a dozen or so very nice ones.

It's a great river, good fishing and wildlife, the only downside is the proximity of the road in some stretches. There are several alternate take outs. Not many folks paddle it, though you will see some river boats in August after the moose hunting starts. Note that in high water, the upper river can be a bit dodgy, with lots of wood. Driving by in mid-August this year, the river was still over its banks on the upper part, though that is unusual.

IMO, it is not a good idea to leave a car at Lower Post, despite what some of the guidebooks have said.


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 Post subject: Dease River
PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 10:56 pm 
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Joined: June 19th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Greenwater, Washington USA
Personally,I like paper maps.

We parked at Lower Post. The natives were very nice about letting us park.


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 Post subject: Dease River
PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 10:59 pm 
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Joined: June 19th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Greenwater, Washington USA
More good reading is Robert Campbell's journals from when he worked for the HBC and tried to set up business in Dease Lake country. He had a rough time of it. PAtterson talkks some about him, I believe but Campbell's journals are availible somehwere.


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PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 11:11 pm 
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Joined: October 2nd, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: seattle, Washington USA
I'm glad you didn't have any problems leaving a vehicle at Lower Post. The Kaska Dene there are good folks, but I know of one group who had their cars vandalized. However rare, it would be disheartening to finish a trip to find your car had been burgled.

For Robert Campbell, you can get copies of his reports a variety of places, including here in Washington at the U of W library. There is also a good biography of Campbell, "Campbell of the Yukon", which has excerpts from his journals detailing his winter at Dease Lake. Warburton Pike's book is,
"Through the Sub-Arctic Forest".


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 Post subject: Dease River
PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 11:28 pm 
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Location: Greenwater, Washington USA
Can you tell me how to find the trail to HorseRanch Range?


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PostPosted: December 16th, 2007, 11:46 pm 
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Joined: October 2nd, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: seattle, Washington USA
There are several marked trails on the east side of the river. However, Laurel Archer and I think that the best option is one that is near Boya Lake. I'd have to look at my maps to find the exact mileage. Towards the end of Boya Lake on the map, there is a right hand bend. RL bank is pretty high before the bend, but there is a low shelf after the bend on RL. A hundred meters or so past the bend on RL, is a cut in the shelf. It is obvious, and a good place to pull in. With a 4WD, you can use this as an alternate take out. I've seen a skiff pulled in there. From that point there is a rough two lane track that heads back west to the Cassiar Highway. Past the cut, the river turns left and heads roughly north again. In the middle of the bend, on RR, is the trail. Neither Laurel nor I have been on it, but by talking to locals and watching for it, we independently figured out it's location. Horses are still grazed in the area, and this is the ford for getting them across the river. Just past the left hand bend is an old cabin, with a corner hanging over the river. If you pass this, you've gone too far.

Hope this makes sense.

Erich


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