Tuesday, August 27, 2013
The day after our Barron Canyon trip, Rudi, AJ, Alexander and I headed out to the Conroy Marsh for what was intended to be an overnight canoing and camping adventure. The plan was to put in at Burnt Bridge Road on the Little Mississipi river, traverse the length of the marsh, taking out across Negeek lake at the MNR dock and spending the night there. Katherine would drop us off, and then meet us that evening with our tent and supplies that evening, and then the next day we would leave the MNR dock on Negeek, and take a shorter paddle up to Combermere and the take out in town.
It all started out well, albeit a little bit windy, and with those vaguely ominous little puffy clouds scudding southward overhead. Paddling was a little tough, be we made decent time down the Little Mississipi to our first break at the point that marks the entrance to the marsh.
On entering the marsh, the wind picked up a bit, and made paddling more challenging. Additionally, just over the Craigmont hill it appeared a squall had formed, and had us right in its path. I decided to try to cover more water, and lashed the boys canoe to mine to keep them in line, and really dug in. Still, progress was slow, and sure enough in less than twenty minutes the nasty weather hit, wind driving at least 50kmh, heavy rain, and the water on the marsh pushing back up into half foot tall standing waves.
Entering the Conroy Marsh on the Little Mississippi River, the marsh opens up to the right, the York River enters behind the trees directly ahead of our canoes.
AJ, Alexander and Rudi posing at our lunch stop, a small point of land that demarks the point the Little Mississippi enters the Conroy Marsh.
This was likely after we got drenched in the squall, the winds too high and the time to late to make it to the other end of the marsh, I decided to turn back.
Saturday, August 3, 2013
About two kilometers past the end of the canyon, the river widened considerably into a marshy lake, and we pulled the boats up to a campsite to have a swim. Rudi 11 facing away tying up his shorts, AJ 12 looking over his shoulder at Alexander 5. This is after a seven hour day of paddling and hauling canoes over portages. Tough little kids!
A short while later, we put out again, and found the portage around Squirrel Rapids, a half kilometer trek over bouldery ground, and after three trips with backpacks, paddles, and canoes, we put in again for the last kilometer of river to the take out at the pit in an parking lot, very close to the road and bridge over the Barron River, and just down from the Sand Lake access gate.
Rudi, AJ, and Alex taking a dip in the deep cool water of the Barron river after a hard day of paddling through the canyon.
Alexander looking back upstream after our last portage, our final take out at Squirrel Rapids is downstream to the left.
Some low rock walls with the take out at Squirrel rapids just coming into view ahead of the canoes.