Day 18

Waldron River to 2km West of Bigstone Point

Distance: 31km – [cumulative total 341 km]

InReach: Day 18 On water by 8 Usual head wind which dropped to calm by noon 31km Beautiful camp on small beach Had dip & wash water VERY cold

Camp: 62.943°N 110.022°W

Up by 6.30am. I still cannot believe how well we slept on those large cobbles though my general aches and pains will attest to the uncomfortable nature of them. About one kilometre after we set out we passed a beautiful long sandy beach and the bowman felt justified in her criticism of the captain’s decision to camp despite the large cobbles. We made reasonable progress against the wind and stopped for lunch in a beautiful sheltered bay with a sandy beach. This was only our second lunch out of the canoe this trip. Post lunch the wind dropped and we had perfect glassy water with only a slight swell allowing for good paddling across several 2-3 km stretches of open water. It had been overcast and cold on the lake but by mid afternoon the sun appeared and we were able to strip off, it was great to feel the sun after more than a week. As it neared camping time we were alongside some spectacular high granite cliffs with no possibility of landing the canoe much less camping. After my complaining last night I was appointed campsite spotter. I had picked out a place I felt likely on the map but the steep terrain was causing me grave doubts still I stuck to my guns and we pushed on and had a real win. My chosen spot turned out to be a beautiful little sandy beach in a sheltered bay amid high rocky hills. So sheltered there was no wind and even better very few mosquitoes, we were both able to enjoy a dip and wash and even sat outside to prepare and eat our meal, annotate the maps and write the journal and enjoy the beautiful environment, a rare luxury on this oh so buggy trip.

Breakfast at cobble camp, another threatening sky which turned to sun later

Rugged north shore of the East Arm, we often paddled for kilometre after kilometre with nowhere to even easily get the canoe out, let alone camp

The bow man, very pleased with herself, finds the perfect campsite, one of the best for the whole trip

Lots of fish grabbing insects as Kate prepares tea, no fish for us however, our priority was to lighten the food drums a bit in preparation for Pikes Portage

Cooking and eating outside with almost no bugs was a rare treat