Archived News & Updates - Oct. 22nd, 2003 to Jan. 15th, 2004

Thursday, January 15th, 2004 . . . . .

Please write conventional letters outlining your concerns and demands for the protection of the Algonquin Wolf .. to David Ramsay, who is the provincial minister responsible for wolves in Ontario .. and to Deborah Stetson, who is the Manager of the Wildlife Section of the Ministry of Natural Resources. Remember that personalized handwritten or typed paper letters are much more effective than email. You might even follow-up with a quick phone call!

David Ramsay
Room 6630
Whitney Block
99 Wellesley St. West.
Toronto, Ontario
M7A 1W3
Fax: 416-314-2216
Phone: 416-314-2301
Deborah Stetson
Section Manager Wildlife Branch MNR
300 Water St.
5th floor North Tower
P.O. Box 7000
Peterborough, ON
K9J 8M5
Fax: 705-755-1900
Phone: 705-755-1925

For background information and a sample letter, checkout the Wolves Ontario website at ..

Thursday, January 15th, 2004 . . . . .

Fixin' Fish, by Sylvia Bashline, Creative Publishing International, Inc. 2000.

I misplaced my copy of Fixin' Fish, after having received it as a Christmas gift. Well, I came across it this morning and immediately my tastebuds started watering. I recalled these couple of shots from Daisy Lake back in 2002. A roaring wind and rain storm had just blown through, flushing lots of forest debri out on to the surface of the lake. As soon as the wind eased-up, Bill took off to catch lunch. Sure enough, despite being mid-day, some trout were rising to feed on whatever the rain had flushed into the lake. Once the sky brightened, the surface-feeding ceased. But it lasted long enough for Bill to bring home the lunch. My purpose in posting these cooking photos is to try to wet your appetite to discuss camping fish recipes on the message board! So, head on over and post your own favourite recipes!

Tuesday, December 30th, 2003 . . . . .

I finally got a back-log of photo submissions entered into the Photos/Galleries section. My apologies to Jim Lennips, Mike Fortin, Gary Skrzek, Steve Trowbridge, Rocco Bellantoni and Dan Thomsen. Your photo submissions are finally online. By the way, this brings the Galleries' total submissions up to 137 photos!

Sunday, December 28th, 2003 . . . . .

One often wonders what would have transpired if on July 8th, 1917 Tom Thompson had decided to sleep-in, read a book or prepare some canvases instead of paddling down Canoe Lake to do some fishing. Would his art have blossomed to greater heights? Or, would it and his life have merely blended into the passage of time?

While no book can answer these questions, Joan Murray's Tom Thompson: Design for a Canadian Hero certainly provides a wealth of insight with which to wonder these questions in far greater depth. This book is a worthy addition to the Algonquin Adventures' Resources/Publications/Algonquin Park History section.

Tuesday, December 7th, 2003 . . . . .

Ken Born takes us back to My First Trip - Big Trout Lake - 1966. . . "I remember looking up at all the stars in the sky and I was trying to come up with an answer of just how many they were. And I was wondering what lay beyond the stars? And then I was wondering how many trout were in Big Trout, and how many bears were roaming around the park? Lots of questions from a young lad of only 16! "

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2003 . . . . .

Another trip-log has just arrived from Ken Born ... his May 1980 White Partridge Lake or Bust trip . . . "That evening we felt like we were on TV filming some fishing show on a remote lake teeming with trout. We had found Glory Bay!"

Thursday, November 13th, 2003 . . . . .

The wind's howling and the snow's piling-up as I add this link to Johanna Wandel's Yurt Weekend 2003. Johanna presents us with a well written and photo-illustated account of a three-day winter weekend in Algonquin, for which her group's accomodation was a yurt at the Mew Lake Campground. The account includes Johanna's description of a snowshow hike of the Provoking Lake loop of the Highland Backpacking Trail.

Thursday, November 13th, 2003 . . . . .

Ken Born has submitted another fishing trip-log. His Kioshkokwi-Mouse-Maple-Kioshkokwi Trip (May 1996) is both a good read and a detailed reference for spring fishermen   ... "Every pass we made across this bay produced a speck. And, they were getting bigger by the minute. We were catching them in the 2-3 lb. range with consistency!"

Tuesday, November 11th, 2003 . . . . .

Following is an extract from a trip-log submitted by Ken Born ... humourously describing his Farm - McKaskill - Dickson - Opeongo Trip (May 2001) . . . "Although not mentioned in the Algonquin Park's Fishing Book, believe me when I say, this is an EXCELLENT lake for specks as my wife and I caught more than enough for our trout dinners during our stay there."

Sunday, November 9th, 2003 . . . . .

Checkout Bob & Diana McElroy's website's 'Bushlog'! Bob & Diana McElroy's website has a Bush Log section with great photo-illustrated Algonquin content ... "A Hike To Eustache Lake" ... "Desecration of a Beautiful Spot" ... "Eastern Wolf" ... "Where Are The Cascades?" ... "Gravel Portage" ... "Basking Snakes at St. Andrews Lake" ... etc.

Sunday, November 9th, 2003 . . . . .

There's a new link in the Trip-log Inventory. It's to Scott Helmer's 4 Day 2003 Loop. He and his pal Blair travelled from Opeongo Lake, through Proulx, Crow River, Lavieille and Dickson Lakes. While his text account is brief, his photographs are super!

Thursday, November 6th, 2003 . . . .

There are three new additions in the Resources / Publications / Algonquin Park - Historical subsection. You can either access them directly by the preceeding link or actually "burrow" in through the same indicated menu choices.

Monday, October 27th, 2003 . . . .

A year has gone by since the inception of Preserve and Protect Algonquin. Since that time, several observations are worth mentioning. The original reported incidents represented the 2002 camping season and clearly documented its deficiency both in the education and enforcement of regulations. Park Superintendent John Winters became appreciative of the concerns expressed in our Incident Log and of our effort to propogate ethical guidelines for park use. In preparations for the 2003 summer season, some park wardens' duties were re-aligned to include more overnight interior trips via logging road and water access. This extended the wardens' inspection and enforcement functions deeper into the park interior, allowing them to perform more like the traditional 'rangers' of old.

While attending the October 22nd, 2003 Toronto session of the First Information Centre - Algonquin Park Forest 2005 - 2025 Forest Management Plan, I talked with numerous Parks Ontario and MNR senior staff, as well as AFA representatives. It was apparent to me that while education and enforcement still need improvement, there have been some distinct efforts to maximize resources toward this end. Undoubtedly, some of the efforts have the side benefit of reducing operating costs. While the park's revised short-term efforts appear to incorporate some increased enforcement, it's clear that their long-term plans depend on re-aligning their limited resources to increase user-education.

A prime example of combining increased user-education with decreased operating costs is the park's increased promotion of the Minimum Impact philosophy, to foster "If you pack it in, you pack it out" and the taking home of camping garbage. This ties in with the park's progressive removal of garbage buildings from access points, trailhead parking lots, scenic pull-offs and picnic grounds ... thus reducing both collection and disposal costs.

The encouraging changes that have started to happen through the 2003 season don't mean we should drop the Preserve and Protect initiative. Rather, the start of changes tells us that our concerns are not being ignored. Continue communicating your concerns to both this website and the government officials responsible for Algonquin Park. Just remember that specific details, photographic illustration, constructive suggestions and a friendly tone go a long way toward making effective communications of our concerns for Algonquin Park's preservation and protection.

And please don't forget that with the installation of the newly elected provincial government which occurred on October 23rd, there's an entirely new set of ministers and assistant staff that are now responsible for our parks and resources. The weeks ahead are an ideal time to welcome them to office with your comments, concerns and hopes for Algonquin Park.

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2003 . . . . . Displays, maps and reports ... Gord Cummings demonstrating forest management software ... all at the 'Information Centre'.

This afternoon, I attended the Toronto session of the "First Information Centre - Algonquin Park Forest 2005 - 2025 Forest Management Plan". For a very informative three hours, I looked over displays and met with key staff of the Ministry of Natural Resources, Ontario Parks and the Algonquin Forestry Authority. I was also given an overview of the computer software used to facilitate the management of logging in Algonquin Park.

After conversing with both the government and logging representatives, I came to two distinct conclusions. Firstly, very tight controls are already well established over the Algonquin Forest's management process. Secondly however, there's a need for increased public awareness of all the processes involved both in the operation of Algonquin Park and in the management of the logging of the Algonquin Forests.

The tremendous amounts of technical and statistical information involved in these management processes became quite evident as conversations progressed. The reconciliation, integration and management of ecological, recreational and logging objectives are ongoing processes ... thus this periodic plan review.

Only by better understanding the various processes affecting Algonquin Park, can we (the general public) hope to participate more fully in the park's life. Algonquin Park's prime value to us is as a LIVING TEACHER ... teaching us firstly about nature, then about our place in nature and finally when it's all said and done ... about our own nature! We claim to be serious about loving Algonquin. Perhaps our claims warrant more curious, respectful and appreciative responses. While I hadn't anticipated such a turn of thought, it certainly does point out the way many of us (myself included) tend to take Algonquin Park's values for granted.

Jim Murphy (MNR Park Planner) indicated he'll be forwarding information and reports pertaining to ecological and recreational issues. Together with continued submissions from you (the readership), it is hoped that this information will provide additional informative content for this website.

Barry Bridgeford (Site-editor)