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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 1:33 am 
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Hi, we are looking for some advice on which river to paddle, we are looking for a classic Canadian river journey. :thumbup: :D We are two outdoor enthusiasts with little open canoe experience but a lot of outdoor and kayak experience, coming over from Scotland in August. We are looking for about a 12 to 14 day trip, grade 2 (perhaps little bits of 3), portages: easy/short/not many, logistically not too much hassle and fairly easy to get to when flying from Europe. We would need to rent the canoe. Our emphasis is on getting proper wilderness and a great journey experience. Any advice please ? *huh?*


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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 2:48 am 
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Location: Toronto, Ontario Canada
Bloodvein River in Manitoba. Artery Lake to Lake Winnipeg.

Scenic, all rapids have easy portages, in lowish water most of the runnable rapids are pretty easy. Long stretches of slack water between rapids, great campsites, Pictographs.

Fly to Winnipeg, shuttle to Bissett, float plane to Artery, shuttle out from Bloodvein Village and back to Winnipeg. If you can split the fly-in with another group it's pretty reasonable. lots of info on the site and also recped.com/bloodvein

Wabikimi (Ontario)

Loops possible, access by train from Toronto (about a 24 hour train ride) dozens of possible routes, not all flatwater

James Bay rivers

Nettogami, Partridge (Ontario) Harricana, Pontax (Quebec)

Accessing any of these could be done by rental vehicle from Toronto or Montreal (10 - 12 hour drive). You won't likely see anyone on any of these, water levels are sometimes a concern in August. Campsites mostly rough as are portages if you need to use them.

Lots more of course many with easier logistics but they tend to be more populated and with more signs of human activity, roads, lumber activity, hunting & fishing cabins/camps.

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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 9:01 am 
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It is easier to go to further east in Canada but consider flying into Saskatoon and using the services of Churchill River Canoe Outfitters to do a trip on the Churchill River.

Churchill River Canoe Outfitters (CRCO) http://www.churchillrivercanoe.com/


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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 11:01 am 
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There are obviously going to be many options...Churchill River is a great choice...Ric Dreidegar at CRCO will get you all set up if you want logistical assistance...If you were to consider it get the book "Canoeing the Churchill" by Sid Robinson and Greg Marchaldin, it is pretty much the "Bible" of the Churchill, covering all rapids, portages, communities, local history of fur trade, pictograph sites etc...
Back in 2005 when we did the Saskatchewan Centennial Canoe Quest there was a team in the race from Scotland...they were awesome! Very fun folks, they left every team a gift...a porridge stirring utensil which still hangs in my kitchen to this day...I believe their team captain was also named Duncan...
Anyway wherever you decide to paddle, I hope you enjoy your time here!


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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 11:27 am 
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If this is part of a bigger trip it would be important to know the other goals you have.

For example if you are primarily going to be in Toronto then you dont want to go to Saskatchewan.


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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 11:55 am 
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Not enough info given as far as your skill levels go. What sort of kayak paddling have you done? What sort of camping have you done? What experiences do you have in an open canoe? Some of these suggestions could prove too difficult depending on your answers....just saying to know your limits and go from there. Remoteness in Canada is different from remoteness in Scotland.

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Last edited by Sam82 on June 17th, 2017, 11:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 1:58 pm 
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Good point on where you are coming to in Canada... rental car rates and mileage can be extreme if you fly in to Toronto.
And how far do you wish to drive to get to the river?
From Toronto just to Algonquin is 4 hrs on a good day.... land in rush hour (s).......
Jeff

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PostPosted: May 31st, 2017, 2:02 pm 
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Location: Winnipeg, MB
I'm not familiar with rivers outside Manitoba to compare but I'll second recped's Bloodvein recommendation. The river is pool and drop. Certainly not without hazards but a mistake on some rivers can mean a long swim; less so on the Bloodvein. There is little current between rapids which can be a benefit to inexperienced paddlers. There's still a lot of runnable whitewater though. And portages around pretty much everything beyond swifts.

There's a lot more picturesque rivers in Canada but there's something about the Bloodvein that you have to experience to appreciate.

Sam82's recommendation of a river with mostly Class I & class II might be a better way to go though, especially if you're looking to up your experience. If you've never paddled an open boat in moving water you should take a course, even for Class I & II. Small rapids can still have surprises.


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PostPosted: June 1st, 2017, 3:03 pm 
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Wow, thanks for all that excellent advice! You cant beat info from those who are in the know... I will start looking at all those options, do some digging. We are going to fly over to do this trip mainly, so no other goals, just mellow out for a couple of days after maybe to get clean and fed ....

The more I look at this the more I recon we need to limit ourselves to easy grade rivers, "Small rapids can still have surprises"!

I'm off to do my homework ...


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PostPosted: June 5th, 2017, 7:53 pm 
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MHO Adventures keeps coming up when I search for Missinaibi River trips approx 6 hrs north of Toronto, no personal experience yet.
Fellow employee used to work for White Squall on Georgian bay and raves about them.
Algonquin's always great.
Happy Paddling to the home land.


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PostPosted: June 5th, 2017, 11:56 pm 
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MHO Adventures only do guided trips, they won't just do shuttles. Due North Missinaibi Outfitters are the folks to contact for shuttles and/or gear rental.

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PostPosted: June 7th, 2017, 4:42 pm 
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Location: Beautiful B.C.
What part of Canada do you want to visit? If you want to visit the west, a wonderful classic river trip is the Yukon River. Also the Teslin River in the Yukon.
Another amazing trip in BC is the Bowron Lakes Canoe Route. A mix of lakes, river and portaging.

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Cheers!



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PostPosted: June 7th, 2017, 6:24 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
blucruisin wrote:
What part of Canada do you want to visit? If you want to visit the west, a wonderful classic river trip is the Yukon River. Also the Teslin River in the Yukon.
Another amazing trip in BC is the Bowron Lakes Canoe Route. A mix of lakes, river and portaging.

I second both though have done only the first ( the Bowron Lakes is on this summers slate)
Whitehorse to Dawson is about 500 miles takes 12 days. There is good air service ( non stop from Frankfurt!) and there is a shuttle back from Dawson City via Husky Bus . We met many Germans and people from Europe when we did this trip.
There is excellent provisioning in Whitehorse and rental of gear. You can do the Teslin to its junction with the Yukon ( which we did) or do the Yukon from Whitehorse. The history is fascinating.


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PostPosted: June 16th, 2017, 3:15 pm 
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Thanks for all of the above, I've been looking on line at the options suggested, lots out there! The Teslin and Yukon: both look great, but maybe we are looking for more remote, but then I'm only looking at this on the internet, we want a little challenge. Bloodvein looks very interesting, like the pool drops idea, however I read that there is long sections of flat with the prevailing wind the other way (oh no!), any advice on that? Thanks recped for adding the essential logistics bit for the Bloodvein. Raven 4: that fine porridge stirring utensil is a spurtle (!). I'm going to google the Churchill and the big salmon in the Yukon.


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PostPosted: June 17th, 2017, 10:15 am 
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Location: Winnipeg, MB
Wind will just make you a stronger paddler!

When you're paddling into wind, sometimes you have to think about it like you're ferrying, angle the canoe a little into the wind away from your direction of travel. If necessary, both paddlers paddle on the leeward side of the boat.

Someone on the forum had a bad experience with wind on the Bloodvein but that's not the norm. It is normally to be paddling into the wind almost every day but it's not always strong enough to be a bother.

If you're considering the Bloodvein, pick up Wilderness Rivers of Manitoba. Hap Wilson has very good descriptions of every rapid. They do change a lot with water levels but it's good to have.


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