Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Charlie's 2008 Odyssey XV

Continuing from Charlie's Final Report. Still on April 21:
It was almost 9:00 PM when we started portaging and sometime after 11:00 when we got to our campsite down a two-track off Topith Road on the north side of the Portage Lake Swamp.
My Note: They would have been camping close to if not right on the south end of the ancient portage.
After a long day we went to bed tired. I felt bad about putting my paddling pal Doug thru so much his first day out but he said he was enjoying it. Doug and I have been on a lot of trips together and he is the kind of paddling partner most people dream about. He enjoys the good days and laughs at the bad ones. Good paddling pals are hard to find....great ones even more rare and Doug in my book is the rarest of all.
Tuesday April 22:
After an oatmeal and cappuccino breakfast we headed south through the swamp. I wanted to show Doug the route I had in mind and a few options. We walked to Leeke Lake (My Note: The ultimate head spring of the Portage River I believe) and over to the last point of high ground where we would have to start dragging thru the marsh. That's when we found out there was no way of walking and dragging the canoes thru the swamp. The ground would not support our weight and we started breaking thru and after going thru to my chest in the muck bottom a few times we decided to try another route, which after scouting and knowing we would have to do it on private land, we walked back to our campsite and called Jim to tell him it probably was not the safest thing to do. He agreed. I have walked across the Portage Lake Swamp on the ice and it's a long way across the marsh part of it.  Jim mentioned that the Russians used something called "swamp skis" to get across marshy areas....might have worked.

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