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 Post subject: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 19th, 2015, 5:28 pm 
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Hey All,

Has anyone been in or around the MacKay Lake area.
I have been goggling for the last 2 days trying to get a current burnt area map but without any luck.

Planing on going up that way from the Sept. Long Weekend for a couple of weeks

Thanks
John


Last edited by saskHiker on August 19th, 2015, 7:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 19th, 2015, 7:16 pm 
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Location: Saskatoon
Maybe contact Quincy & Miriam of Paws & Paddles. They have a cabin on Bartlett so would likely have a good handle on what the area is like after the summer's fires.
http://www.pawsandpaddlestours.com/
Bryan

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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 20th, 2015, 1:14 pm 
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I got this reply back from Quincy at Paws 'n' Paddles Wilderness Tours. http://www.pawsandpaddlestours.com/

Quote:
The area west of Mackay lake is burnt all the way to the Churchill river. Mackay is not burnt nor is Five Fingers. East of Mackay is not burnt. There is quite a large burn at Lynx, Sulphide, I don't know how far north it goes. Last year another fire burnt Hebden lake.
The area would be very black and full of ash. Could be hard to find campsites. These burns are very extensive and burnt really hot. Even most of the islands burnt.

Quincy Miller

Paws 'n' Paddles Wilderness Tours


Hope this helps anyone else thinking of heading up that way.

John


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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 21st, 2015, 5:02 pm 
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Hi,
Just got back from a short trip east of MacKay Lake. We went through Cote, Baldhead and into Contact Lake. Camped on an island in the main part of the lake.
Proceeded east from Contact Lake. First portage was quite bushy - we removed some bush and a few logs. Next drag through was wet as usual but OK. The long portage into Hebden was in good condition but needed some deadfall removed. Hebden is mostly burned but there are a few places that are not burned. The island campsite at 136447 has not been burned. We left Hebden through the south route at 130436. The first portage to the small pond had deep grass with some holes which made walking interesting. The second part of this portage was very bushy. We cleaned most of the bush so that, generally, the trail is visible and passable.
We paddled north up Freestone and stopped to check out the old portage between Freestone and Hebden. It has not been burned but is not in good shape. I strongly recommend taking the southern portages with the small pond in the middle.
We arrived at the portage from Freestone into Sim and found a real mess. The portage had been burned in 2014. Ric at CRCO said that some paddlers had attempted to find the Sim Lake end of the portage but gave up. It took 4 of us about an hour to find and flag the trail even though we knew from previous years where it was located. It then took the 4 of us a further 4 hours work to make the portage passable. It was interesting that in many places new, 5 to 8 foot balsam poplar shoots had grown up all over the portage trail. At times, you could see where the trail was because of those shoots. Anyway, a good time was had by all. After the clearing and the portaging, we went to the island campsite on Sim Lake at 183454. Although much of the area around Sim Lake was burned, this island and the small island to the west were not burned. We took a much needed bath and a break.
We went north out of Sim. The first portage was quite bushy but easily passable. Beavers have built a 1 metre high dam along the creek just before McNichol Lake. We were able to push/pull the boats over this. At some point it might be a good idea to build a short portage around it because coming upstream would be more difficult.
We went through McNichol into Smith Bay of Otter Lake and camped in Otter Lake. We went to Missinipe the next day, reported our trip to Ric and then went home. We met these people:
http://cheminsdelorbleu.com/en/
at Missinipe. What a trip they are on!


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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 21st, 2015, 6:01 pm 
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Thanks Ralph,

Do you think a person could get around going through Sulphide and Caribou lakes and make the loop?

Trying to decide if I am going to go straight to Maclennan or stop and explore some of MacKay.

John


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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 21st, 2015, 11:41 pm 
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Hi, John,
I don't know of the conditions down by Sulfide Lake. I know that there was a recent fire between Lynx Lake and Sulfide Lake but I don't know more than that. Contact Ric D. at CRCO for more recent info.
FYI, there was at least one fire in the McLennan Lake area. My understanding is that it went through the southern part of McLean Lake and south through Hastings, Zacharias and on to part of Versailles Lake. You should check with Ric if you are planning a trip in that area.


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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2015, 2:14 pm 
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This map may be of interest showing the past fires from 1945 - 2014: http://www.environment.gov.sk.ca/adx/as ... &l=English

This map lets you look at the extent of the recent fires: http://cwfis.cfs.nrcan.gc.ca/interactive-map


Attachments:
active fires_2015-08-22.JPG
active fires_2015-08-22.JPG [ 248.31 KiB | Viewed 2940 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2015, 2:26 pm 
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Closer look showing some of the detail available. I wonder if the high detail reflects the reality.


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active fires_2015-08-22_close.JPG
active fires_2015-08-22_close.JPG [ 142.16 KiB | Viewed 2935 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: MacKay Lake Area
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2015, 2:36 pm 
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Joined: March 19th, 2015, 12:41 pm
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Thanks for those Bryan,

I had been to both of those sites.

The issue with the data no matter where you get it from is that they generate it from a hotspot and try and extrapolate from there.
Comparing my map http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=44276 with the one from nrcan, I don't seem to be far off. :)

I just wish the Saskatchewan Government wasn't so far behind of releasing the GIS burn scar data.

Oh Well!
John


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