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Ottertooth Forums * Temagami canoe routes & backcountry travel * Archive through April 3, 2012 * Chiniguchi - possible route < Previous Next >

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Post Number: 2
Registered: 10-2008
Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 6:36 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Because it is never too early to start planning for next year I am looking for some feedback on a trip that is in the very early planning stages.
I saw Kevin Callan speak at the Toronto Outdoor Show this past year and he spoke about Chiniguchi. He mentioned how it is similar to Killarney but without the crowds. So with that little bit of information I decided that as this year’s plans were already set, that this would be the destination for next year’s trip.
We do a number of canoe and backpacking trips each year, but our big trip is 8 days usually doing about a 125K. We are mix group of adults and teens (Boy Scouts) we like to start early (6am) so we are usually in camp well before noon. We pack fairly light and single carry all the portages. We are thinking we can add another 40 or 50K without killing ourselves if it gives us more options. For these longer trips we have done Killarney (3 trips), Algonquin, (6 trips), Temagaimi (1 trip), and the Adirondacks (3 trips) so a return trip to Temagami seems to be appropriate.
We also like to climb mountains and fire towers; we have done a number both in Canada as well as the States. So a route that includes Ishpatina would be something we would be interested in doing. That being said I am inclined to avoid most of the Sturgeon River as we paddle light weight Kevlar boats, and some in the group have limited WW experience.
The question, given all of the above, can you paddle from Matagamasi Lake to Scarecrow and back in 8 days? It would appear that this would require paddling the Sturgeon River both ways but only from Hamlow Lake to Kettle Falls then taking the backdoor route to Stouffer Lake? Can you paddle the Sturgeon upstream?

Any input or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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Post Number: 1073
Registered: 03-2004

Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 8:10 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

I think I answered this on myccr. Ottertooth was my second choice this morning.
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Post Number: 3
Registered: 10-2008
Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 10:22 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks I see that you did too.
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Post Number: 178
Registered: 08-2009
Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 3:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Short answer is, NO. It is a push to make Florence Lake in four days from Matagamasi. That is still a ways away from Ishpatina.
You could put in at the Sturgeon and Gervais Rd. and go up to Scarecrow then up to Smoothwater, over to the Lady Evelyn and back to where you started by dropping down through Florence and crossing over at Solace Lake.
We are doing something similar, a little longer, this September. So keep posted. Ishpatina is tough to get to coming from the SouthWest (Makinonge or Matagamasi) There is a put in further up near Wolf Lake, I believe, but that is only saving a day at most.
You can certainly get to Maple Mountain from Ferguson Bay and back in eight days. It is a really nice trip. No rough spots for your boats, certainly no whitewater. But perhaps you have done that already?
As far as Chiniguchi being like Killarney...
I am not seeing it. Killarney has lots of people in it. It has power boats on its Western side. Hikers and such and there are cabins and cottages. Chiniguchi has the odd cabin, some hunters on ATV's, but it is more expansive, less mountainous and more coniferous.
It is beautiful, like Killarney.
Maybe consider a trip up to Florence and back and climbing to the lookout at the south end of Florence Lake? It is a bushwack but worth the climb. You would still be pushing it hard to make it there and back in eight days. A six a.m. start will do it, but there will be no noontime making camp, maybe three or four in the afternoon.
20 kms/day is a little low for what you want to do. The portages add up, at least that has been my experience.
I get the impression you guys are pretty serious outdoorsmen, even so, travel up there takes time.
Maybe I am wrong.
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Post Number: 4
Registered: 10-2008
Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 5:38 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks for the comments. I think maybe that i am trying to match up two different trips (Ishpatina and Chiniguci) in an attempt to kill two birds in one trip. Yes we have done Maple Mt as part of a loop from Sandy Inlet. We also did the North/South Channel which was really nice. I'm still interested in Chiniguci. Maybe a loop which tops out at Kettle Falls, then down the Sturgeon as far as the Pilgrim Triangle than down thru Laura and Irish Lakes would work over the 8 days we have.
I do travel with some good company these boy have been with me since they were 12 and 13 years old. Most will be completing High School next year and so this will be there last trip. They wanted something more challenging then what they have done in the past. For me this trip while not my last will be the last with this program as my sons will be some of the ones leaving. I have been leading these trips since my oldest was able to participate starting in 1998. I have been fortunate to be able to share these experience with my four sons and look forward to future adventures with them.
Any other comments or suggestion would be appreciated.
Thanks Brian
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Post Number: 17
Registered: 03-2010
Posted on Friday, August 12, 2011 - 9:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

You can alter your trip and work in 3 climbs in the Chiniguchi area.

1- Wolf Lake Ridge 444'
2- McConnell fire tower at Franks Lake
3- The Elephant 446' Chiniguchi Lake
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Post Number: 121
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Sunday, August 14, 2011 - 11:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

been racking my brains and the only way you could work it all in- and it would still be a stretch for 8 days with the ishpatina hike- would be matagamasi-chiniguchi-stouffer(backdoor)-sturgeon- hamlow-scarecrow-hamlow-sturgeon-(portage)stouffer -chiniguchi-laura-flume-matagamasi.
i think that's just about the maximum variation you can get covering all your bases from matagamasi.
personally i would take 12 days for this trip but then again i sleep in, make meals from scratch, double-portage and like to take it easy and explore a bit.
then again i once shared the pinetorch lake campsite with a pair of insane norwegians; this was their second night out from temagami access! those guys could probably do the above route in 5 days, but then again (i swear) they were packed up and gone by a quarter to 5AM...

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