Day 5: Red Pine Bay to Hogan’s Lake
Quote of the day: “Iodine, bivalves and coffee. No one has pooped this much...EVER!”
Our camp last night was the tits! Once again, I slept on the ground but the high temps and low wind after sunset made for a very pleasant snooze. I woke and packed just as the sun kissed the western tree tops and burned the swirling fog from the warmer water.
We had coffee and breakfast then packed the canoe for a short 3km paddle to our first portage.
On the way we passed near a campsite with two canoes and a few folks joking about a botched group photo attempt in process.
I carried the mostly uphill but only 800m portage to Lake La Muir following a fairytale mossy and lush trail with sturdy bridges along the route. I snapped a few pics and ended it with a big smile and much earned protein bar while matt loaded the canoe.
The warm sun led us both to remove and stow a couple unnecessary layers before our long paddle through La Muir. The wind was in our favor as we paddled NE and made our first stop to search for ruins marked on our map. Fruitless but careless, we pushed on down to the end of La Muir seeing only one other motor boat a few km across the water. We spotted our first cloud in the sky for two days, a sign that rain would be here in approx 2-3 days time. Le Muir continued to narrow until we had 1 ft depth and constantly stirred up odorous silt with each stroke.
Matt repositioned and sat low on the floor of the canoe to raise his paddle strokes.
A heavy dock appeared beside a large beaver dam.
We unloaded the boat and easily loaded the gear on our backs.
The “semi-buggy” portage beside a cascade was a piece of cake and ended in a sunny marsh with many frogs and fish.
ABout half way through the marsh, we encountered two Algonquin Outfitter canoes headed the opposite direction. We exchanged pleasantries and passed on.
As Hogan’s Lake opened up ahead of us, we made for the first island campsite and ate lunch of sausage and cheese, tuna wraps, peanut butter and trail mix.
The Island had been burned by fire a year or two ago evidenced by the many charred trees and open lower vegetation.
Matt threw rocks as he is apt to do.
Full and packed, we set off about 5k down to our camp for the night 1 km from Thursday’s portage. The wind was somewhat to our side and we remembered to fill up water in the deeper part of the lake.
Unfortunately, Matt dropped one of the bottles in just as he was screwing on the cap so we had to reverse course to find it. It was quite funny as we both paddled to turn us around and go back to the bobbing bottle all while the wind blew small swells at us from all angles. It would have been easy to accidentally take on water or worse. Somehow after running over it twice and trying to bat it closer, Matt retrieved the off-white nalgene and secured it with carabiner. WE arrived around 3:15 and took it easy relaxing on the beach.
I spent about 5 minutes on the hunt...
I went for a refreshing swim in the cold lapping water and dried naked in the sun on the rocky beach. This is vacation.
We lazed away the PM resting our sore muscles and exploring options for tomorrow’s route.
Still chucking rocks.
The planned paddle and portages to Radiant Lake looked like a hell of a lot to handle for only two days so we consider aiming for Catfish Lake then the Petawawa River back to Cedar Lake.
This has somewhat of a risk considering we layed out our route with Parks Canada as well as Jake back at the Brent Store.
We had dinner then watched as the sun began to set.
And the moon began to rise:
Some rain drops collecting the view.
After drinking more whiskey than we should'a (Beard finished his off) , we attempted to hang our bear bag which led to much laughing and a few close calls with a rock in the dark.