Monday, March 19, 2007

Rock Lake Solo: Tips from Kevin Callan

I took out Kevin Callan's A Paddlers Guide to Algonquin Park from the library a few weeks ago and found lots of usefull little tid bits to use on my solo trip to Rock Lake. Since I have to return the book in the next few days I thought I would post the usefull exerts that will be of help to me on my solo trip this July.

Kevein On Getting to Rock Lake:

"To access the Tock Lake put-in, turn sought off Highway 60 onto the gravel road leading to the Rock Lake Campground. Five miles (8 kms) later you will come to a crossroads. The put-in is straight ahead, but first you must drive to the gatehouse to obtain your interior camping permit".

About Rock Lake:

"From the docks at the access point, the route heads left, down the short stretch of the Madawaska River, and out into Rock Lake. The North end of the lake is cluttered, with a busy campground and a number of cottage sites, but the designated interior campsites are located to the sout, the best being situated on two of the three large islands and also near the base of a rock wall. Rock Lake is an excellent place for a history buff. Along the west shore one can observe the Native picographs- one of the few remaining signs of the park's earlier inhabitants. The rock paintings are believed to be by neighboring Ojibwa from the west. To locate the site, paddle to the north side of he bay, almost dirctly across from the west poin of Jean Island. The pictographs, consistin gof the vague traces of animals and a few tally marks, are on a wedge of rock close to the water's edge. The red ochre having faded over time, the paintings have become difficult to see against the pink graphite. "

From Pen Lake to Welcome Lake:

'The fourth trip is to Welcome Lake, and happens to be the most challenging but also the most rewarding of the five routes. To reach Welcome Lake, take the series of portages along the Galipo River, which flows into Pen Lake from the west. To locate the first protage, paddle into the weedy bay to the right of a knob-topped island covered in stout pine. The first protage (295 m) climbs up to the left of a beautiful waterfall and ends at the swampy expanse of the Galipo River. The river is more of a weedy creek then a major waterway, and it's a quick paddle from the put-in and up the twisting channel to the next set o portages. Here, the older Algonquin maps indicate a 1,170 m portage inot a small pond, followed by a 1000 m portage into Welcome Lake. In reality, the pond is now almost totally dry and the two trails have become on long 2,170 m portage."(NOTE: The new new maps show it as 2,170, but the PDF algonquin map divides the portgages as described)

From Welcome Lake to Louisa Lake:

"The long haul to Welcome Lake is worth all the sweat and strain. The circular lake is adorned with prime beach sites, and its remote setting offers some of the best brook-trout fishing in the park. To reach Lake Lousia from Welcome Lake, continue up the Galip River into Harry and then Rence Lake. Almost immediately after the entrance to Rence, head north up another shallow stream and a muddy 320 m portage into the connected Frank and Florence Lakes. Two portages connect Florence Laek to Lake Louisa. If the prevailing winds are extreme, you can choose to take the 3,455 m path located at the northeast corner of Florence Lake. This will allow you to avoid paddling almost the entire length of Lake Lousia. But the shorter, 1,725 m path at the northwest corner is a better maintained trail and a more direct route; just be sure not to get lost where the portage joins upo with a logging road approximatelly 100 m from the put-in. Turn right onto the road. Then, after abouta two-minute walk, turn left back into the bush. It may seem straightforward, but with a caone balanced over your head it's easy to miss the turnoff and continue blindlly down the road. What remains of the day is an hour-and-a-half paddle to the east end of Louisa, followed by a 2,895 m portage into Rock Lake. The portage begins to the right of a giant logjam, and, like the previous portage, makes use of a logging road. It then follows an old tote road that is now almost totallly obscured under a dark camopy of mixed harwoods."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You wrote, "the usefull exerts that will be of help to me on my solo trip this July." I think you meant "useful excerpts" or short snips from Kevin's work.