Canoe Route. Dogtooth Lake-Stewart Lake with an Alternate to Winnange Lake and Manomin Lake

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1 1 Canoe Route Dogtooth Lake-Stewart Lake with an Alternate to Winnange Lake and Manomin Lake This route can be a return trip back to the start point at Rushing River Provincial Park or could be a one-way trip ending at an old logging road at the north tip of Lower Stewart Lake. There is another alternate and longer route that adds a loop to this trip. Access into Eagle Lake is also possible off of this loop but as of March 2000, no route guides exist for this alternate route. This is a beautiful route through some large clear lakes with spectacular scenery, waterfalls and sandy beaches. The geology changes slightly at the north end of Stewart Lake and you will encounter some different vegetation as well. Length: 38 km to Stewart (one way) plus 10 km for loop. Total round trip 88km back to park Portages: 11 Estimated time: 6-8 days Rating: moderate-difficult Topographical maps: 52E9 Longbow 2F12 Dryberry 52F13 Feist GPS (Global Positioning System) waypoints are given for the start and finish of each portage for both directions of travel where possible. All portages are marked with yellow, blue, red or orange markers. It is recommended that you use the topographical maps listed. Please leave nothing but footsteps and take only pictures. If you pack in, pack it out! Bottles and cans are not recommended, as they are heavy and bulky, full or empty. Reusable containers are recommended and please use biodegradable soap products. Keep your campsite clean and hang your food pack. Build campfires on rock whenever possible and away from combustible material. Remember boating regulations (1999) require canoes or kayaks to have a red, yellow or orange lifejacket for each person, a whistle, waterproof flashlight, throw/tow rope and extra paddle on board. Let someone know of your route and expected day of return. You may leave this information at the park office.

2 2 Know your levels of canoe experience. Some lakes are large with high waves in windy weather. Rapids are for experienced paddlers only! Many types of fish are in the lakes and fishing regulations can vary. Obtain a copy of the most recent regulation guide. Rushing River Provincial Park is located on Hwy. 71, 25 km from Kenora, Ontario. This park is a full service campground, open mid-may until mid-september. If you wish to camp in the park during July and August, reservations are recommended ( ). The park has 2 well-maintained boat-launching areas with good docks. There is no fee to launch your canoe. Parking is available at no charge in the lower parking lot. The campground is located on Dogtooth Lake, which is the first lake on your trip. Dogtooth is a scenic lake and there are private cottages and powerboats. You will notice on your journey the large number of young Jackpine trees. This is regeneration after a huge forest fire (112,200 hectares) that burned through this area in Your Route Leaving the park (N49 degrees W094 degrees ), travel east along the south shore of Dogtooth Lake for approx. 6 km until you come to a narrows. Paddle through this narrows and around a point keeping to the north shore for approx. 4 km. Enter the river system by passing under a bridge which leads into Kilvert Lake. This river system is home to many birds and mammals. There are 3 campsites located before the bridge. Continue east on Kilvert Lake narrows for approx. 3.5 km. The lake will open to the main body. There are several suitable campsites on the large islands on the north shore. Continue across the lake (east) for approx. 2.5 km to the portage to Gale Lake. The portage starts near a cottage located on a long sand beach. Note the scenic cliffs along the south shore of Kilvert Lake. These were the result of glacial erosion. PORTAGE # 1 Kilvert Lake- Gale Lake 250 meters N49 degrees W094 degrees Gale Lake Kilvert Lake N49 degrees W093 degrees This portage is generally flat and easy walking through a mature red pine stand. Markers are yellow/black with an orange square. There is an excellent campsite at the Gale Lake portage. Leaving the Gale Lake portage (west side) paddle across the lake approx. 2 km to a beautiful sand beach and the portage landing to Ethelma Lake. The beach area provides excellent camping. PORTAGE # 2

3 3 Gale Lake-Ethelma Lake 1200 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Ethelma Lake-Gale Lake N49 degrees W093 degrees Look for red, yellow and blue signs with an orange point. This trail is well maintained but long and challenging. The first part may be wet as it passes through a grove of speckled alder. There are some uphill parts and the descent to Ethelma Lake is rocky and steep. Take your time and watch your footing. Part of this portage is along an old logging road. Camping is possible at the top of the ridge overlooking Ethelma Lake. Leaving the Ethelma Lake portage (west side), travel east across the lake for approx. 2 km to the east shore. Continue north (left) along the shoreline for approx. 1.5 km. You will come to a small creek marked with yellow signs. Follow this creek until you reach the bridge, which crosses over a small set of rapids. At this point you will find the portage into Highwind Lake. There are campsites at the mouth of the creek. PORTAGE # 3 Ethelma Lake-Highwind Lake 50 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees This portage is rocky and flat and follows along a set of rapids, which pass through a mature cedar grove. Cedar is present here because of the deeper and wetter soil. Leaving the portage (west side), travel east along the north shore for approx. 3 km crossing the channel. There are several excellent campsites along the shoreline. Continue east along the northshore for approx. 4 km until you reach two large islands located in the NE corner of Highwind Lake. The portage into Porcus Lake is east of these large islands. Note the mature red and white pines. PORTAGE # 4 Highwind Lake-Porcus Lake 300 meters N49 degrees W Porcus Lake Highwind Lake N49 degrees W093 degrees This portage has a gentle incline and follows a well-maintained path. The last 30 meters are very wet and muddy. Note the cedar here too. Camping is available at Highwind Lake landing. Leaving the Porcus Lake landing (west side), travel east along the north shore for approx. 5 km to the portage to Rivet Lake. It is in the NE corner of Porcus Lake.

4 4 PORTAGE # 5 Porcus Lake-Rivet Lake 350 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Rivet Lake-Porcus Lake N49 degrees W093 degrees This portage landing is rocky and dry and crosses over bedrock. There are many fallen trees surrounding this trail. The Rivet Lake landing may be damp. Leaving the Rivet Lake landing (west side), travel east along the south shore for approx. 1 km. You should be able to see the portage into Fish Lake. Rivet Lake is an Experimental Lake. The Experimental Lake Area has been operating since 1968 and is a huge outdoor laboratory where scientists come to study aquatic ecosystems. From these studies, they have learned a great deal about ecosystems in the Boreal Shield. Rivet Lake has been classified as a reference lake, which means the lake is studied for any natural changes in the water, shoreline, or soils over a period of several years. PORTAGE # 6 Rivet Lake-Fish Lake 100 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees This portage is dry with a gentle decline down to Fish Lake. It follows a creek at the base of a Jack Pine ridge. Because of the deeper fresh-moist soils, a variety of tree species such as cedar, birch, black ash, jack pine and balsam fir grow here. Leaving this landing (south side), travel through this narrow lake north along the east shore for approx. 3 km. Note the red and white pines, which enhance the cliffs on the east shore. There is a campsite before the portage into Geejay Lake. PORTAGE # 7 Fish Lake-Geejay Lake 300 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Geejay Lake-Fish Lake N40 degrees W093 degrees The trail begins along a gravel road and continues east for approx. 100 meters. At this point it crosses the road and follows a well-marked trail to Geejay Lake. The trail is generally flat and Geejay Lake landing is rocky. It is well marked with yellow signs at either end. Leaving the Geejay Lake landing (west side), travel north across the lake to Eagle River. Paddle along the river to the next portage to Lower Stewart Lake.

5 5 PORTAGE # 8 Geejay Lake-Lower Stewart Lake 350 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Lower Stewart Lake- Geejay Lake N49 degrees W This is well marked with yellow signs and follows a set of rapids. It is wet and boulders are scattered along the portage. There is a campsite at Stewart Lake landing. Paddle north on Lower Stewart Lake into Railway Bay. If you wish to end your trip here, paddle to the landing near an old logging road and the railway tracks. From the landing, head north (left) up the road for 1.5 km to Experimental Lake Road. Turn right onto Experimental Lake Road and drive 2 km to Hwy 17. Both roads are in poor condition due to washouts. This is a private road. For your extended trip, paddle from the landing, out of the narrows and head north from Railway Bay past 2 nice campsites. Cross the bay and head into a narrow section passing under a bridge (old logging road bridge) on your way to upper Stewart Lake. There is a campsite before the bridge. Paddle along the south shore (right after coming out of the narrows) down to the next portage to Winnange Lake. There are 2 campsites before the portage. PORTAGE # 9 Stewart Lake Winnange Lake 500 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Winnange Lake- Stewart Lake N49degrees W093 degrees This is well marked with yellow signs and has a sandy landing. It follows the crest of a ridge and drops down to a steep rocky trail to Winnange Lake. Watch your footing! The landing at Winnange Lake is grassy. You are now in Winnange Lake- a beautiful clear trout lake. The mainland has large rocky knolls with mature red pine and there are lots of campsites around this end of the lake. This area is also the area of Winnange Lake Provincial Park. It is classed as a natural environment park and is 4745 hectares in size. Natural environment parks incorporate outstanding recreational landscapes worthy of representing natural and historical features. Winnange Lake encompasses unusual geography and geology. It also encompasses fairly uniform broken terrain of rocky knolls and intervening wet depressions. The distinctly wave-washed bedrock is not common in the park system of the NW region. The huge sandy beach, 500 meters long and 10 meters wide is rare in this region. The large areas of wave-washed bedrock are representative of processes acting during the height of ancient glacial Lake Agassiz. The area was probably immersed in the glacial water for most of the time following the ice recession. Much of

6 6 the high bedrock may have been above the water level or just below it, making it susceptible to denudation by wave action. To continue your trip, paddle through the narrows and out into the main lake keeping to the east shore. Go around the large peninsula and head west into the middle of the bay towards the next portage to Manomin Lake and a sand beach at Eagle River. There is a campsite here. For route access to Eagle Lake, paddle to the south end to Jackfish Bay and through a narrow section (campsite here). Keep to the west shore and round the bend to head west. Look for the mature red pine stands on either side of the narrows. Continue to paddle out into the main body of Winnange Lake rounding a point with a campsite on it and sand beaches on each side of the lake. Paddle for 3 km and round the next point (watch for the sand beach). There are at least 3 campsites here. Around this point you should paddle east past a red pine stand (campsite area) and into a narrows that will take you to the portage into Eagle Lake. (There is no information on Eagle Lake routes as of March 2000) PORTAGE # 10 Winnange Lake-Manomin Lake 450 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Manomin Lake-Winnange Lake N49dgrees W093 degrees This is well-used, fairly flat portage with rocky areas at either end and. There is a beautiful waterfall and plenty of cedar trees growing at its edge. Red pine is also present. After leaving this portage, paddle (west) for 1.5 km. Paddle across to the south side of an island. There are 2 campsites here. Behind this group of islands is the next portage back into Geejay Lake. PORTAGE # 11 Manomin Lake-Geejay Lake 500 meters N49 degrees W093 degrees Geejay Lake-Manomin Lake N49 degrees W093 degrees This is a steep climb to the top of a ridge, north of yet another waterfall. Geejay Lake landing has a private cabin at the landing. Proceed through a Cedar grove where the path is wet and rocky. Rapids could be run if you are experienced in whitewater. Scout them thoroughly first. You are now on your way back to Rushing River Park through Geejay, Fish, Rivet, Porcus, Highwind, Ethelma, Gale, Kilvert and Dogtooth Lakes. Refer to previous

7 directions in this guide, starting at Portage # 7. Remember you are travelling in the opposite direction in the portage descriptions. GPS waypoints are also given for these directions. 7

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