Cavern Lake, Ontario - kkokanie.ca

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Gull River Provincial Park Canoe Route - June 2011

On June 17, 2011 our group of 2 paddlers embarked on a 5 day canoe expedition through portions of the Gull River Provincial Park in Northwestern Ontario. The trip saw us navigate 35 sets of rapids over a 75km stretch of road accessible Northern Ontario wilderness. We encountered one water fall and we were required to traverse only 2 of the 11 marked portages during our journey. This route offered us challenging whitewater, had few cleared campsites and many of the portages noted from our research were not immediately visible from shore.

Much of the route is excellent moose habitat, and we had the pleasure of coming within close proximity to 4 individuals. Black bear and other fur-bearing creatures are present in the area, and during our visit to the park, we encountered two different mothers and their first year cubs. We relied on the gifts of mother earth for our sustenance, and the Gull River provided us with plenty of walleye to eat.

As the Park Superintendent indicated to us, although the Gull River Provincial Park can be accessed by road, "this route should be treated as remote northern wilderness, and the appropriate skills and experience are recommended." Based on our trip through the park, we would concur with this assessment, and only experienced whitewater paddlers and those with extensive wilderness camping experience should attempt this route.

Itinerary Overview

We departed the Thunder Bay dispatch point on Friday June 17, 2011 at approximately 8:00 am EST. We traveled approximately 225km north Thunder Bay via Highway 11/17 west to Highway 527 North to Highway 811 North. Due to time constraints and limited opportunity, we opted to shorten the traditional canoe route, by accessing the Gull River via a bridge crossing found on a single track, active and maintained logging road. It was noted by our contact with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources that our intended access was not an approved access point to the park, and upon turning left onto Kitchen Lake Road, we noted a sign indicating that vehicle access to the provincial park is prohibited.

Key Documents & Files

The following key documents were developed through extensive research and consultation. They are a record of our experiences on the Gull River, at a time with unique water level, river and weather conditions. Use at your own risk.


Various sources of information about the Gull River Provincial Park

© Ken Kokanie 2007 - 2013