Archived News & Updates

Wednesday, January 10th, 2007 . . . . .

The 3rd AFA CSA Certification Advisory Group meeting (Jan. 8 & 9th) went well! With the facilitators taking a step back and changing their methodology, quite a bit of progress was made in laying down "values" and "objectives". February's meeting should be getting into associated "targets" and "indicators". I handed out over two dozen copies of readers' forum and email-submitted "values" input. The commentaries were well-received and became part of the official record. I remain optimistic that we'll be able to achieve some increase in trip-planning details (active haulage noise zones) from the AFA and hopefully an earlier annual release of that info.

"The drive back to Huntsville late Tuesday afternoon had clear weather like the outgoing trip. But, just south of Hunstville I drove into an increasingly dense lake-effects-snow blizzard. It was full darkness, heavy swirling snow with limited visibilty and snow-covered highway all the way to Barrie. This photo was from within the park .. shot through a side-window on the return part of the 'car-pooled' section of the trip .. between Pembroke and Huntsville."

Friday, January 5th, 2007 . . . . .

Frank Massacci (a.k.a. Chesney) has sent us another great trip-log ... eight days of spring fishing and canoe-tripping fun with Murray Caro, Tony Spidalieri (a.k.a. Laker) and Angelo Spidalieri (a.k.a Spec) ... Kioshkokwi - Mink - Mouse - Erables - Maple Lakes Loop - May 2006.

"We launched the canoes on Erables Lake. It was 2:15 p.m. Considering the campsite we were planning to stay at, we still had about an hour paddle to the north end of the lake. The windy day played in our favour. The wind was at our backs and made paddling the big lake a lot easier than first anticipated. We arrived at the campsite and started to set up. Laker and Murray had a "Three Stooges" moment when hanging the food packs. It seems that Laker had thrown the rope over a branch and Murray had commented that it didn’t look strong enough. So to test it Laker gave a sturdy tug of the rope and of course the branch broke, and hit Murray right on the head."

Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 . . . . .

Neil Miller (56 year old dad) and Emily (21 year old daughter) headed out for 3-day canoe trip from Tim Lake, looping north to Big Bob Lake, down the Nipissing, upsteam on Loontail and Latour Creeks, and then back by the Tim River .. Algonquin Park Spring Trip .. May 27 – 31, 2005. It was the first time Neil and Emily had paddled in the same canoe together since 1994, when she was 10 years old.

"There were also numerous deadfall obstacles most of which could be circumvented with minimal effort but a couple of them presented some real challenges. Emily has a few phobias and spiders are one of them. Maneuvering through this stretch was a lot of work because it required as much steering from the bow paddler as the stern. Emily put in hundreds of draws and cross-draws and I was impressed since we had only worked this out the day before. We managed to avoid most of the brush and only took a few dozen spiders into the canoe. Fortunately, Emily didn’t see most of them "drop in" because they fell in behind her and I dispatched the little arachnids before they became an issue."

Saturday, December 16th, 2006 . . . . .

Markus Rubino has added a very detailed trip-log to his website. Between June 24th and July 3rd of 2005, Markus solo'd out from Kawawaymog Lake (Access Pont #1) to North Tea Lake .. from where he looped through Lorne, Kakasamic, Mattowacka, Fassett, Shada, and Manitou Lakes .. to finally return via North Tea Lake. High temperatures, high humidity and a high bug-count tested him repeatedly. Markus tells us of some serious lessons learned in his Fassett Lake Summer Loop .

"I didn't understand the dynamics of heat exhaustion or even heat stroke, but I was aware of the symptoms. The chills were the result of my body's cooling system shutting down. I was over heating...heat exhaustion. I still couldn't understand why, I was well hydrated. I walked back slowly to the creek, more chills wracking my body. Finally I reached the creek and sat in the middle of it, on a rock ... I dangled my feet in the water, and soaked my t-shirt, and wrapped my head with it. For 45 minutes, I sat on a rock semi-naked under the blazing sun. Drinking straight from the creek, I slowly began to feel better."

Thursday, December 7th, 2006 . . . . .

Neil Miller loves to tell a story. And he does it well! He has followed up his "pre-taste-of-winter" trip-log (below) with a humourous recollection of a van-shuttle to the Tim River. It was an exercise in practising character-building patience. As such, it's a wistful reminder of how our anticipation of setting out on a canoe trip can be tried and tested by the turns of fate. Maybe this story will start an Algonquin Adventures tradition similar to the "Vinyl Cafe". If so, perhaps we'll call it "Camp Tales". Please enjoy ... The Shuttle.

"We quickly discovered that Andy was a young man who was not to be hurried. He made the rounds, in the store and in the kitchen, talking to all the girls and making them all laugh. That Andy was quite the charmer. We followed him around thinking our presence would put some urgency into his pace. It didn't seem to make a difference to him but finally, at 9:00 AM, he asked us to help him load the canoes onto an aging full-size Chevy van."

Friday, December 1st, 2006 . . . . .

Neil Miller, and his friend Brian, headed out for a 3 Day Trip: Rain Lake To Misty Lake. Between iced-up shorelines and some heavy wet snow, they had a pre-taste of our winter-to-come.

"At 6:30 AM the temperature inside the tent was 4°C. We exited the tent at 7:00 and everything was covered with about 1 to 2 inches of heavy wet snow. The outside temperature was 2°C ... The tent was so wet from the wet snow that we packed it separately (rainfly and tent) into two, 4 mil contractor trash bags. I had brought along straps to cinch them tightly and Brian carried the rainfly and poles inside his pack while I packed the tent inside mine. We loaded and launched both the boats, one-at-a-time, down the steep gully into the narrow inlet. The gully was now covered in slippery wet snow so the loaded boats took on the characteristics of loaded bobsleds."

Monday, Nov. 27th, 2006 . . . . .

It's been nearly a week since I got back from the second Algonquin Forestry Authority CSA Certification Advisory Group meeting.

If you're interested in either the forestry-logging operation, or in the operation's certification process, I refer you to the recent addition to Algonquin Adventures' top menu-bar .. "Forestry".

In this new section, I'm intending to provide the typical recreational user of the park with insight into the practices, regulations and controls involved in Algonquin Park forestry and logging. I'll also be describing any concerns I may have about individual issues and the general process itself.

I've come away from the second meeting (Nov. 20 -21) with two areas of concern which aren't yet resolved. My first concern involves the issues of "Defined Forest Area" and "Old Growth Forest". My second concern involves the procedural issues of how the group's "consensus of opinion" will be measured or reached, and how any dissenting opinions will be recorded and presented in the public record. In the weeks to come, I'll be detailing these concerns within the "Forestry" section. I hope to search out others' opinions in these areas and to provide a broadened understanding of the issues.

Wednesday, Oct. 18th, 2006 . . . . .

This October 2nd to 4th (2006), I spent two nights at the Wolf Den. The Wolf Den is a unique type of accomodation just east of Oxtongue Lake .. a short distance beyond the west gate of Algonquin Park. My activities in the park included two extensive day-hikes .. to Maple Leaf Lake on the Western Uplands Backpacking Trail and the entire loop of the Mizzy Lake interpretive trail.

Earlier in the year Ben Teskey had brought the Wolf Den on board as an Algonquin Adventures sponsor. After completing my hike to Maple Leaf Lake, I checked into the Wolf Den around 7:30 pm and had quite an enjoyable chat with Robin and Ben. I'd already cooked my dinner at the trailhead, so after unloading my gear, I indulged in a relaxing evening of lounging upstairs in a cushy soft chair and chatting with some of the other guests. You can view photos of the Wolf Den that I took during my stay.   . . . . Barry Bridgeford (host)

Barry Bridgeford (Site-editor)