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 Post subject: Torch River Info Needed
PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 1:36 pm 
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Hey everyone,
New to the forum, hoping for some help.

I have heard that it is possible to run the Torch River from Candle Lake to Tobin Lake. I am hoping to do this in early june, while water levels are still ridable.

What I am wondering is;
have any of you ever done this route before?
where can I find reliable info on water levels?
what is a reputable source to get the maps for this trip?
does anyone know if the fishing is okay on the torch?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!


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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 2:25 pm 
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Hello befree,
I've paddled sections of what you describe, from north of Choiceland to the White Fox bridge. And I've considered doing something akin to what you describe.

For a description of a portion of the river, see http://www.wildpaddler.com/river_creeks/river_creeks.htm#torchriver

As you mention, running the Torch is water level dependant. Call the Sask Watershed Authority and get information directly from them. The Torch is regulated by the control structure at Candle Lake.

The Torch is a deceptively LONG river. Doing a quick measuring on google earth, I get 211 km. You can probably double that number because I didn't follow ANY of the meanders! Note also the Torch never reaches Tobin Lake. Rather, it follows the lake for some distance then joins the Saskatchewan River a fair distance later.

I know others that have paddled a section closer to Candle Lake. I would expect that beaver dams could be expected, but perhaps at high water they are submerged. From what I understand, most of the river is fairly slow and there will be points where you travel many kilometers on the river to cover very little distance as the crow flies due to the meanders (not that it necessarily matters). I was just playing around in Google Earth and found one section that is 7km on the water, and 2km as the crow flies. However, the area upstream and downstream from the Love bridge is fun whitewater.

One fellow I know of that is fairly familiar with the Torch is Larry Gill. He can likely better advise you than me. Larry is in Choiceland so look him up. Or PM/e-mail (see the buttons below) me and I can get you his e-mail address.

From Mark's web site (the fun section):
Image

For maps, the best will be the topographic ones. You can buy the printed maps at a SERM office, Eb's, Canada West Paddle Sports, etc. Or, you can download them at http://www.geogratis.ca/geogratis/en/index.html (I take the files to Mondrian for printing).

Cheers,
Bryan

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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 2:31 pm 
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Thank you very much,

this is a ton of great information, I will be following it up, and will post on here what I find.

The only real concern that I have, is that water levels will be so low that I will be dragging canoe for large portions of the trip....
Time for more research.


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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 2:33 pm 
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Pictures on the Torch from my wife & I.

From 2006:
Image

Image

Image

Image

From 2007:
Image

Image

Image

Image

From 2008:
Image

Image

Gotta love that early season paddling! These trips were all in May, I think.
Bryan

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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 3:18 pm 
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Allright, this is what I found out.....

From Candle lake to Tobin lake, or near tobin (a road meets the torch on the west side of lake) the trip is over 200km. I have it mapped out, with the meandering at around 450km.

So, I got in touch with sask water authority, and was directed to the nipawin branch, because it was the water levels that I was most worried about. It was a good thing that I did, because I found out that, this year, thanks to drought, this route is basically impassable. Even the whitewater section near love is almost too low to traverse.

For future reference, normally, during spring runoff, this is doable. Right from Candle lake to Tobin, as long as water levels are decent, this could be done. There is a dam on candle that controls the flow of the torch, and this must referenced before anything else.

Cheers to sask water authority :clap: , nothing but polite, helpfull, people, from beginning to end.

Time to figure out something else....


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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 3:26 pm 
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Good to know; the Saskatoon Canoe Club was intending to head up there again this year. Looks like the plans might change. I thought the NE was wetter than that?

Do you recall who you talked to at SWA in Nipawin?

Bryan

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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 4:27 pm 
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I was advised to, and managed to speak with lyle in nipawin, although everyone in that office was eager to help, and were quite knowledgable.

I have family in nipawin, and this is definately one of the driest years of the past five according to them. They had ALOT less snow than normal, although it stuck around quite late into spring. From what I am reading at the gov of sask website, this year was below normal for snowfall province wide.

It also seems that the torch fluctuates quite dramatically with rainfall, so perhaps after a decent rain you could get back onto it.


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PostPosted: May 6th, 2009, 4:41 pm 
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Thanks befree,
If it's the guy I'm thinking of, Lyle is definitely a nice guy, and a paddler too. He ran the river with a group of us from Saskatoon a couple years ago.
Cheers,
Bryan

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