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Ottertooth Forums * Temagami canoe routes & backcountry travel * Archive through August 10, 2009 * Temagami- Misabi Range- Lewbert Lake? < Previous Next >

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lizcan
Member

Post Number: 1
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Sunday, June 28, 2009 - 8:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

I'm planning on going through the Misabi Range in Temagami.
Does anyone know if the portages from Beaver Lake through Lewbert Lake to Ames Creek exist/are open?
Has anyone tried recently?

Thanks!
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alscool
Moderator

Post Number: 188
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Monday, June 29, 2009 - 8:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

These portages have not been confirmed as useable.
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ghost
Member

Post Number: 4
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Sunday, July 5, 2009 - 7:58 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

I don't know how thick the brush is up there, but if I were to go that way, is there anything I should do to revive these portages, or just leave them pretty much the way I found them (as in no evidence of a trail except my bushwhacking)? And no, I don't plan on bringing a machete.
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pine_sap
Member

Post Number: 36
Registered: 05-2004
Posted on Sunday, July 5, 2009 - 11:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

It's kind of "bush code" to clear portages you come accross that need it.
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ghost
Member

Post Number: 7
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Sunday, July 5, 2009 - 7:54 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Ok, I'll THINK about the machete.
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pine_sap
Member

Post Number: 37
Registered: 05-2004
Posted on Monday, July 6, 2009 - 8:16 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

BTW, it's nice to see someone wanting to try the lesser traveled routes. If you are up for the work these trips can be quite rewarding.
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alscool
Moderator

Post Number: 189
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Monday, July 6, 2009 - 12:33 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

It is most likely that the forest has overgrown any evidence of a put in, take out and footpath.
That is not to say they are not there.

In reality the portage is just a linear feature from point A to B and the portage would have adjusted itself to blowdown and changes in waterlevels. Most likely the take out and put in would be static and would be found in the most obvious location such as shortest route and ease of approach and landing. The put in and take out would have been marked with a blaze, but they may not be visible due to over growth, or perhaps the tree died and fell over. In any case it is very likely in the obvious spot and I would use the reference from the Historic Map of Temagami as a guide to where the portage would be.

A GPS is a huge help for this work.
I would start by locating both ends of the portage. Try to trace the reference and look for blazes as you scout the forest. You may need to walk back and forth a number of times. A blaze will appear in many states. Wide and shallow for recent and thin and deep for older blazes. A blaze will eventually heal over leaving a thin line stained with black soot like material and these very old brazes are hard to distinguish. A blaze is a marker on the trail that will face direction of the trail and the next expected blaze. There will be two blazes on the tree for both directions. If the trail turns the blazes on the tree will reflect that. One thing to be aware of is that the blaze trees will fall down so if you do indeed find the ancient trail and then it disappears start to roam around in the general area until you pick up another blaze. Marking the locations on the gps is helpful.

On a recent Nastawgan rehab on Pinetorch Creek an 800- 1000 m rehab took two and a half days to properly locate, brush and remark.

I think in your case you do not have this sort of time. You should be aware that even with proper tools you could on this portage for a very long time. The forest gets thick and wild, so much so that may get stuck in the woods before you find your way across the bush!!
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lizcan
Member

Post Number: 2
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Wednesday, July 8, 2009 - 3:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

thanks for the replies- I'm not leaving for a couple more weeks- maybe someone else will be going into that area before I leave.

If I had more time, (and maybe if I'd been in there before to poke around) I would be keen to bring the tools and work through the portages. Maybe I'll take a look, though, and see if I can find the ends of the trail.
I don't have a gps, though. Just a compass, map and flagging tape...isn't that half the fun?
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hillbilly
Member

Post Number: 389
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Wednesday, July 8, 2009 - 5:42 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

lizcan
A compass, the knowledge of what to look for in finding and old trail unused for many years, a pair of limb snippers and the time and energy to do the work is all you need.
Bill
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ghost
Member

Post Number: 8
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Wednesday, July 8, 2009 - 7:28 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

I'm pretty sure I don't have the time to establish a proper portage if it hasn't been used in 50 years. The best I can do is use a machete to cut as straight as possible a line between the two closest points of water shown on the map. As I said, I'm leaving on the 9th of August, so if you're lucky you might be able to track me. I haven't bought the Machete yet,and haven't had occasion to use one in the last 20 years or so.
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micmac
Member

Post Number: 82
Registered: 12-2005


Posted on Thursday, July 9, 2009 - 3:34 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

A machete probably isn't the best tool to use for a job like this.
In Temagami, a good folding camp saw will be much more useful - and safer - than a machete when clearing portages/deadfall.
Save the machete for your next trip to the jungle... lol
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ghost
Member

Post Number: 9
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Thursday, July 9, 2009 - 7:53 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Often a machete is not very useful, but I actually found a machete quite handy cutting a few paths through very thick growth down to sampling sites along the Whitson River near Chelmsford, back in the day. It all depends on how thick the brush is in terms of branches per square meter, and in terms of diameter. I don't plan on cutting down any trees.. Cutting 50,000 1/4 to 1/2 inch diameter pointy - ouchy branches doesn't sound like a job of a buck saw. On the other hand if it's anything like most the land around Sudsbury, there won't be ANY cutting required. It all depends.
micmac, how about taking a look this weekend and letting me know what to bring
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sundown
Member

Post Number: 430
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Friday, July 10, 2009 - 8:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Sandvik... also known as a Brush Axe... and a small Bucksaw... doesnt add much weight, and very safe to use.

Sundown
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ghost
Member

Post Number: 11
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Friday, July 10, 2009 - 6:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Well if the consensus, from people who know the flora in the area, is that the saw and small axe is sufficient, I think I will save a few bucks and a little weight and forget about the machete; we are bringing a take down buck saw and small axe regardless.

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