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Canadian Canoe Routes

Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake
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Author:  hectop [ July 18th, 2018, 10:51 am ]
Post subject:  Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

I have not been very active on this forum. I have canoed the Elk and Thelon Rivers multiple times over the last 15 years or so. Canoed Whitefish Lake (from Tom's Camp in the Western end) to Double Barrel Lake last August. We (6 of us) were trying to get to Eyeberry Lake but ran into tough weather. Blog and pictures of my trip can be found here I am planning a trip from Yellowknife along GSL, Pike's Portage but then I am looking at a route to get me into Sandy Lake and then Whitefish Lake. I have not found any route info on this. I do not believe it is done very often but it has been done and I know that it is quite a slog :o . But is Trout Creek from Artillery Lake a good/best option? I have viewed that route on Toporama maps as well as Google Earth. Does anyone know of anyone who has done this or another similar route?

Thanks a bunch! :D


Author:  Biorhytta [ October 16th, 2018, 3:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

Did you do the trip?

Author:  hectop [ October 16th, 2018, 9:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

I am planning this for 2019

Author:  Biorhytta [ October 17th, 2018, 2:08 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

Sounds good, i have been to Sandy lake and parts of the upper north arm of Snowdrift River. I would think you will have to do a lot of portaging on your way from Artillery to Sandy Lake. Some waters do have Graylig and/or Pike. San to Whitefis is mostly portaging

Author:  picea [ February 16th, 2019, 9:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

Yes it's been done. Slog is a nice understatement. Trout 'creek' will have you thinking how easy Pikes was :) One note, please consider and don't take it defensively: Your flag that you left on the Thelon may bring you joy, for everyone after that would have seen it, it's garbage. Another example, you'll see on Great Slave lake, is places people have scrubbed lichen off rocks/ cliffs so they could mark their names. Not cool, it's graffiti. Instead of wilderness, thoughts of past travelers and an opportunity to pretend you're one more explorer in a remote and still pristine (ish) wilderness you get graffiti and garbage on GSL. Just think about it, as your paddling on that beautiful if rather intimidating lake. Or did you see the disgusting mess of Tom's Camp on Whitefish, on that beautiful esker? If yes, wouldn't it have been appealing camping, but the appeal taken away by that awful mess of someone who got to live the dream and then leave a mess for anyone else who would have like to enjoy the place? Yes the NWT and Nunavut are still remote, pricey and hard to get to, but the people who do make it there want to see the same wilderness you did. Please, please, please, practice no trace camping and traveling so the next person can have same amazing experience you did. Two of us in one canoe did paddle from Yellowknife to Baker Lake, connecting Trout Creek to Sandy Lake to Whitefish and Thelon. You will find no trace of our passage. The best route sounds like connecting thru Hanbury :p Trout creek is what you see on Google Earth, some shallow tundra puddles, water flowing under boulders between them, and no trails. I would say there is no 'one' route. Find the puddles on Google Earth and maps. Then how you go about connecting the puddles really depends on what you find, whether or not you are experienced with hiking and efficient at portages. There is often more then one strategy to make the route work. We much preferred hiking to repeated loads and unloads and are very experienced with hiking in difficult terrain using gps and mental maps. Another group, Paddles and Paws, I think made the trip work buy sticking close to and making max use of the water. They traveled from Pikes to Baker Lake. So the route does go and yes it is A LOT of portaging. Also, where is double barrel lake? Does it go by another name (beewick?) Have fun

Author:  hectop [ March 6th, 2019, 7:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Artillery Lake to Whitefish Lake

Hi Picea,

Ok. Guilty as charged with the flag. I normally do practice no-trace camping whenever possible but the opportunity of hoisting and leaving a Ukrainian flag flying over the Thelon proved too enticing. I accept your criticism without any rancor and commit to doing better.

I have included a JPG file of the topo map with Double Barrel Lake highlighted and the location where we placed the flag. I have not seen another name for this lake but let me know if there is one.

It looks like I will be doing the Hanbury after all in August, landing in Ptarmigan lake, going through the Hanbury portage and getting picked up in Warden's Grove. but next year I woulds like to do the Clarke River in early July. have you done that route?


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