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Ottertooth Forums * Temagami canoe routes & backcountry travel * Archive through August 3, 2012 * Wolf Lake hikes < Previous Next >

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maramar
Member

Post Number: 29
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Saturday, April 21, 2012 - 1:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Hi all!

Saw/heard Bob Olajos present at Nipissing U last night. He mentioned an upcoming Mother's Day hike up at Wolf Lake. Thinking of driving up with my wife tomorrow (Sun, Apr 22)and seeing what there is for hiking. None of the maps seem to indicate established hiking trails around the Wolf Lake ridges (like up to 444), including the new map we got from Bob last night! Does anyone know if they exist and where we might catch them from the road?...or is bushwacking the only way to get up on the ridges?
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ed
Moderator

Post Number: 1169
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2012 - 8:33 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Maramar;
You will likely need a 4x4 vehicle as the road deteriorates as you drive north.
The hills are pretty bare so you can scramble/walk up them in many places.
On the west side there are some old logging roads that you might be able to hike along.

The roads show up on Topo Canada 4 if you have a Garmin GPS. As you come to the North West end of Silvester, there is a road going west that you can use to hike up the highest hills on the West
side of the lake.
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maramar
Member

Post Number: 30
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2012 - 8:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks Ed...much appreciated! And not a moment too soon..we are heading out the door. Hopefully our RAV4 will get us there. Cheers.
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ed
Moderator

Post Number: 1170
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Sunday, April 22, 2012 - 3:21 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Maramar:
Please let us know what the drive was like.
I expect to be up that way this next week.
Ed.
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maramar
Member

Post Number: 31
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Monday, April 23, 2012 - 9:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Happy to oblige, Ed...and any others wanting/needing to know,

Ok, ended up not being too much hiking after all but did get to see some of that region for the first time. Would like to do some paddling there this year...maybe as soon as 2 weeks from now, so also wanted to check out the access point on Matamagasi. Doesn't seem to be too much there in the way of parking (signs posted). We learned after getting back home that Kevin Callan talks about an alternate access on Portage Bay of L. Wanapitei so we didn't know to check that out too...any insight anyone?

The drive. As you said, a 4x4 was definitely an asset unless you have a car that you just don't care about but even then you still may get hung up if you don't have enough clearance (we have 7.5" on the RAV4 and were fine).

The road had been freshly graded, even up to and past the first bridge at the top of Wolf, although there was no evidence of heavy equipment use/travel much beyond Sylvester. I suspect the grdaing was done with a truck or even an ATV. Goulard is doing lots of cutting both south of and north of the Matamagasi area, up to Sylvester where there were new logging roads on the west side (maybe the ones you mention, Ed). As far as the one at the NW corner of Sylvester that goes up to the ridges (if we had the correct one), it is well marked with a large billboard from the N.B.S.S. (Nickel Belt Snow Spirits) and a quite new (and comfy) looking outhouse that I'm sure that Mother's Day group will appreciate (bring bum wad...there was none in it).

So before reaching the bridge at the top of Wolf, there was 2 water crossings on the road. Again, these may be difficult/too deep for a car.
In his "Lost Canoe Routes" in 2004, Callan mentioned that the MNR was thinking dismantling this bridge to end vehicle traffic in the regions north. Not only is it still there, but is in excellent shape. From there we took the portage down to the base of the falls and had lunch on the rocky point/campsite off to the left. A dissappointing amount of garbage littered the fire pits and surrounding trails (we had nothing with us to pack it out in). Also, a badly cracked and shot up paddle boat was adrift in the bay. (Later, my wife and I lamented not being able to bring that out as well since we saw that Kukagami Jack's at the highway turn-off "buys used paddle boats", lol!!!)

After lunch, we intended to continue north and try to find where the next portage continued off to Laundry Lake. Only made it another kilometer past the bridge when we came to another even wider water crossing. The depth was not the issue but rather a drop down off a buried log on the road. Having no shovel to backfill it and ramp it we decided to call it a day and turn back.

About it...Cheers! Mark
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ed
Moderator

Post Number: 1171
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Monday, April 23, 2012 - 1:51 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks Mark:
That is a well detailed report that answers a lot of questions.
I cleaned up a big pile of garbage last September on my way out. Mostly near the bridge at the north end of Wolf.The paddle boat was upside down in the bush near the portage, when I last saw it. Towing it back to land with a canoe will no doubt present some problems. I can't understand why anyone would take a paddle boat to Wolf lake and then abandon it.
There is a bit of a drop at Laundry Creek, which would present a problem getting over the creek. I noticed that the ATVers were using pallets to let themselves over that small section.
But it sounds like it is still driveable, so maybe the Mother's Day bus will make it up there, at least to the bridge.
Ed.
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grncnu
Member

Post Number: 197
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 1:46 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

i've said it before, and i know nothing can stop them now, but these roads are not good for the backcountry...
being able to drive to places like laundry or scarecrow, or other formerly canoe-only accessible lakes/rivers/creeks is convenient and kind of irresistable draw (heck, i used the gevais road myself to get to a part of the sturgeon that used to take a week to get to...)
as for the matagamasi access, it may seem small but we've always been able to find a good spot there even in july and august.
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brian
Moderator

Post Number: 1425
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 5:56 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

There's a whole page on Ottertooth that discusses the various access alternatives to Matagamasi.

http://www.ottertooth.com/Temagami/Sites/chini3.ht m
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maramar
Member

Post Number: 33
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 7:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks Brian!

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