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Where Is This? » Where in Algonquin? No.187 » 9/18/2017 4:04 pm

RobW
Replies: 24

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Maybe a hint as to which type adjective to look for in the lake name? Size such as big, little, etc? Location such as north, east, south, west or upper, lower?

Trip Planning » Post October 10th Canoe Trip » 9/18/2017 1:05 pm

RobW
Replies: 10

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Backcountry camping is open year round - with the exception of some temporary closures in the spring around ice out. Reservations aren't available year round, mostly because there is not enough demand to justify the parks paying for the reservation system in the off season.

Where Is This? » Where in Algonquin? No.187 » 9/15/2017 12:25 pm

RobW
Replies: 24

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That isn't Clydegale is it?

Equipment » Tenting with a Dog » 9/08/2017 12:18 pm

RobW
Replies: 17

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basilthegood wrote:

...The thought of having her in the vestibule crossed my mind when I started thinking about how filthy she could get, especially when wet and muddy.
...

It's guaranteed that you'll be sleeping with a wet dog at some point, but I've been pleasantly surprised over the years at how much they do tend to dry off before bedtime. Still, it's worth packing a towel to wipe them down. 

 

Equipment » Tenting with a Dog » 9/08/2017 12:16 pm

RobW
Replies: 17

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ATVenture wrote:

... well when the sun went down my dog decided she wanted to go to bed ...

My German Short Haired Pointer was like that. As soon as it got dark out she went to bed. Camping that meant heading into the tent - which if it wasn't buggy would usually have the door open. At the cottage, she would head inside and it didn't matter what anyone else was doing, she was going to bed. 
 

Equipment » Tenting with a Dog » 9/07/2017 2:34 pm

RobW
Replies: 17

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A couple of thoughts about counting on the vestibule:

1) No bug protection in bug seasons. Scott and I had Trigger with us on an overnight in blackfly season this year and he needed the protection of the tent as much as we did. 

2) The vestibule isn't really contained the way the inside of the tent is. That means your dog can wander out while your asleep. 

Looking at the Midori Solo, it looks like it should be big enough for an NSDT to squeeze in with you. You can leave gear in the vestibule if you need to. 

Where Is This? » Where in APP 176 » 8/11/2017 1:06 pm

RobW
Replies: 32

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Coming into Farm Lake from the north

Trip Planning » Some Thoughts Prior... » 8/04/2017 8:27 am

RobW
Replies: 18

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It's a good poem, but yeah I didn't have an obvious response. 

How was the trip?

Equipment » Gear Addictions? » 8/03/2017 6:39 pm

RobW
Replies: 17

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Does 4 canoes, a sail boat, a row boat, 2 kayaks, and 3 aluminum boats (although only 2 have motors) and a windsurfer count as an addiction? 

I mean, I even sold an old kayak (bought it surplus after a Scout Jamboree in '86 for about $20 and got my money back almost 30 years later) and finally gave in and burned the worn out '62 Lakefield that was past being restored. 

So I'm not addicted to boats, right?  http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/cute.png


And it really isn't that hard to pick which stove to bring ...

And I've cut down on the flashlights/headlamps/lanterns & lights, really!

As for sleeping bags - I've only got one, but I think Scott has at least 4...but that's his problem. ;-)


 

Trip Reports » Trip Report: My failed trip » 8/03/2017 6:31 pm

RobW
Replies: 31

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I feel your frustration but you should never feel bad about changing plans. Being adaptable is one of the most important survival skills. Getting home safe is a good measure of success. Pushing on, getting lost and digging yourself in deeper would have been a bad thing. 

At the same time, I agree with some of your twenty-twenty hindsight. Sounds like you were over tired. That 30 minute rest would have been a good thing. It would have given you time to grab a snack and ponder things a bit. Who knows if you would have made it to Turcotte or not, but I bet you would have come up with a plan B. 

Not sure if this will make you feel better or not, but if you haven't already read it, find a copy of Dangerous Waters by James Raffan. Not enough sleep the night before and starting a trip already over tired played a big part in that tragedy. 

As for adapting - well we started the Obabika loop in Temagami for a trip about 8 years ago. Plan was to do it in about 5 days which would be normal for adults. By the 2nd morning we'd accepted that with the kids the ages they were (7, 9, 12 I think) we weren't going to finish in 5 days. Probably could have done it in 6 days, but 5 days wasn't happening. Instead we spent the time touring around Lake Temagami itself. Ended up be a really good trip and someday we'll get back there to do the full loop. 

Next time you try that route you'll know you'll be blazing the trail and be ready for it.

Skills » How to not bust an ankle? » 8/02/2017 10:17 am

RobW
Replies: 11

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ATVenture wrote:

I'm really liking tho looks of the Vasque boots, I might have to go check them out at SportCheck. 
My girlfriend just got me a pair of Merrell hiking 'shoes' which I think I'll have to return for something that offers ankle support.

The Merrell shoes are pretty popular - my own regular footwear, so don't be too quick to return them.

I regularly portage in my Keens but on more rugged trips like the whitewater sections of the Petawawa I'll wear proper hiking boots. 

Even leather can come in different thicknesses and weights. The Asolo boots I've used most recently are a heavier leather than the Garmont's I had before that. Had a good talk with an Asolo rep at Adventure Guide here in Waterloo when I got the first pair of Asolo boots. What I'd really like is a pair of the Zamberlan's that MEC carries: 
https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5024-120/Tofane-NW-GT-Backpacking-Boots

Catch is (besides the price) they only stock them in a few locations and on the rare occasion I've been able to get into Toronto when I'm looking for boots they either haven't had any in stock, or at least not my size. 

Skills » How to not bust an ankle? » 8/02/2017 8:41 am

RobW
Replies: 11

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CanoeClaire wrote:

I once had a sales rep explain that there is a difference between boots that offer ankle protection and ankle support. Ankle protection essentially just makes sure your ankles are protected from scrub and sticks. Ankle support means the boots have more structure in the ankle that actually supports you. 

I think he said ankle protection is more common than ankle support. I have Vasque Breeze boots that the sales rep said had ankle support. 
...

I think that's a really good way to describe the difference and yes the Vasque boots would be likely to provide good ankle support. 

Skills » How to not bust an ankle? » 8/02/2017 8:35 am

RobW
Replies: 11

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Good topic and you should definitely get both ankles looked at. The pop could easily be a tendon or ligament snapping. 

My first suggestion would have been proper hiking boots, but you were already wearing them. Now I would prefer a leather boot rather than a lightweight Merrell style boot but I can't definitively say that the Merrell's don't have the same structural support. I've been using Asolo boots for my hiking boots. They are a good quality leather upper, but I would prefer it if they had a stitched on sole. 

Second suggestion is to lighten the load. General guidance is to carry no more than 1/3 of weight. I'm pretty sure you aren't pushing 300lbs, so carrying 100lbs of canoe and pack would be in excess of that.

Lots of folks consider single portaging essential, but I've never bought into that. Backpacking is one thing, but once you start canoeing you've added a minimum of the canoe, paddles, spare paddle, safety bucket  and PFD's. We all know about the heavy loads that the real Voyageurs used to carry, but as someone on MyCCR pointed out a long time ago - many Voyageurs died in their 30's from strangulated hernias. 

Here's hoping your ankle heals up quickly.
 

Equipment » Personal Care Items, Hang With Food? » 7/20/2017 1:24 pm

RobW
Replies: 20

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trippythings wrote:

RobW wrote:

...along with the clothes you were wearing while cooking and eating. 

I thought I was the only one that did this! I know people hang their food, personal care items, cookware, etc. but haven't heard of many other people hanging their clothes as well.

Nope, you don't hear of it, which comes back to the difference between hanging food because you think you should  versus taking all the steps to make it a worthwhile exercise. If you are going to hang stuff, then in order to be effective you do indeed need to hang that shirt you were wearing when you cooked the bacon along with the pants you spilled the spaghetti sauce on. 

This video sums up my experience with meeting bears in the back country:




Bears can become a problem and bad camping practices like those reported in the garbage thread are serious contributors. Bears can also become predatory, but those extremely rare bears aren't going to care if your food is hung or not. Most bears are going to leave you alone and take off if *you* get too close. I had a closer encounter on one of the last portages of the trip that video is from where I came around a corner and a bear was about 30' from me in the middle of the portage trail. I said "hi" and the bear swore at me and took off into the bush the way he was already headed. Sadly the cameras were still with the packs back at the other end of the portage. 


 

Equipment » Personal Care Items, Hang With Food? » 7/20/2017 1:13 pm

RobW
Replies: 20

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Jdbonney wrote:

Also, what made you stop hanging?

Biggest motivator was considering the wear and tear on tree branches - which went along with realizing that there weren't a lot of good branches around to start with - which took me back to figuring out why good branches to hang from were in short supply - probably because they had been killed off by rope damage. 

I also saw both enough videos of bears easily reaching food sources that were hung in a variety of ways and a lot of discussions about best practices. While hanging food gets a lot of attention, it isn't practical in many places including Ontario. Once you get up into the boreal you aren't going to find a big enough tree to hang your food from. 

 

Equipment » Personal Care Items, Hang With Food? » 7/20/2017 1:07 pm

RobW
Replies: 20

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Jdbonney wrote:

Rob, what do you do with your food now that you've stopped hanging it?

Food is in the barrel, camp is kept clean. barrel and other items are usually tucked under a tarp too. No the barrel isn't bear proof, but the bear will make enough noise that I'll be waking up. 

It's a valid but recurring topic. Most Ontario Parks don't provide options for meaningfully storing food. Hanging just adds wear and tear on trees. National Parks out west provide bear cables strung between posts. Those work fairly well for grizzlies which don't generally climb. Lots of videos of black bears happily climbing and traversing ropes to get to hung bags so I doubt even a proper cable set up with have much value in Ontario with black bears. Even with the cables, to be effective you need to cook at least 100 yards from the tents and then hang at least another 100 yards from there. 

Pukaskwa National Park and (I just heard) Frontenac Provincial Park  provide food lockers. The ones in Pukaskwa are concrete with galvanized steel doors. Those are likely effective. 

Then again, if you're eating chili (which is a standard meal on our trips), then your sleeping bag probably smells pretty good by morning anyway. 
 

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