Circuit70 La Verendryť
August 24 - 26, 2004 Eric and Ted in solo canoes
Incoming storm a little too rough for solo
From Le Domaine head north on highway 117 for approximately 140km then west on "highway" 44 for another 35km. Highway 44 starts as a fairly decent wide gravel road and ends up a small one-vehicle trail that, at least on one spot, may take a 4x4 to get over depending on the weather. This low spot has been built up with loose logs in the mud. The last 35k take as long as the 140k from Le Domaine.
Just before the Pont Berry second bridge on the left is the portage/put-in. On the right is a fairly secluded spot for parking. Lots of new bear scat around so over-night camping may be probematic.
16:45 on the water - finally! The water is calm, no winds and evening georgeous.
20:00 Made camp at the old logging road bridge - now just a chute. The only place to camp is right on the old road bed. A wonderful supper of Matar Paneer vegetable curry on couscous. As usual, food barrels put away from camp but not hung. Spent some time wandering around looking at the reminants of the old bridge and logging cribs.
SOUTH SOUTH WEST
Depart at 09:15 Winds picking up. There is not much room for error at the put-in. Any mistake will send you downstream into the cute.
09:30 At the EV (shallow). Too shallow and fast for my ottertail paddle so had to restort to lining up the last little part. Eric had no problems using his bentshaft.
10:00 At the ledge and old logging race. Rather beautiful. I imagine the fishing here to be great.
10:30 Turned into Lac Lambert, open water and a good wind. Still sunny though.
12:15 Lunch break on a small island. Hard work with a strong wind. We want straight south and wind is coming from the SSW. If we make it to the point and can turn East, we'll be home free.
15:00 We'd like to give up but its mostly a very rocky shore. The wind and the rain are too much and the chop is just too high. Eric spots a flat spot ashore with the possibility of a emergency camp so we turn and make a run for it. Really tired and wet. An early night. As previously, we do not use our bear rig but simply put the food barrels down the shoreline and in some bushes.
The storm finally calms down a bit and a beautiful sunset makes us think tomorrow may be nice.
A LONG DAY AHEAD
07:15 The weather looks lousy so we're on the water after a quick breakfast hoping to beat the winds. It's not too far from the turn into the sound, off the lake, back on the river and some shelter from the high winds.
08:00 Finally make the turn into the sound.
08:15 Its raining again and this time lots of thunder. Time to get off of the water and hope it passes soon.
09:15 Finally over and back on the water - again!
10:30 Make it to Grand Chute and the portage. Put up the tarp to get out of the rain and have a nice warm lunch. The portage here is on the island between two chutes. River right turns into a series of log jams and rocks - totally impassible and deadly. River left is worse - well beyond classification.
We keep thinking the weather will shift and a nice campsite will be found but no luck just strong winds and lots of rain. To heck with it. We'll just cut the trip short and head for the truck and the take-out. The take-out and truck are on an island between two bridges. I miss the island and start heading towards the first bridge and an impassible chute. Eric spots it and calls me back. Being tired can be dangerous.
20:00 Get back to Lac Domaine. Supper and head for home in heavy driving rain. Maybe next year and better weather although not sure it's worth the hassles of getting there for a three day trip. Now if a person had a week!