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Old 07-12-2009, 12:34 PM   #1
canuckAME OP
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Location: Thunder Bay Ontario Canada
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Lake Nipigon The long way round

Four years ago 3 of us started in Thunder Bay and rode around Lake Nipigon. It's sometimes called the 6th Great Lake due to it's size. There's good logging roads run north south up each side of the lake. It's the east west across the top where it gets difficult.

Anyways the first attempt was successful. It's approximately 700km around.
We tried the same trip 2 years ago and were stopped halfway by an impassable water crossing.

Enter 2009 and a possible new and different route over the top. Maps were gathered bodies hydrated and the bikes gassed up and ready to go.

The weather in Thunder Bay wasn't to bad but as we headed north on Hwy 527 the clouds came down and the temperature dropped.

Abour 50 km north the temperature was down to 8C and rain looked inevitable so we stopped for rain gear.

It didn't take long before it started to drizzle

Eventually we made it to Armstrong about 240km north. The drizzle had quit and we stopped for fuel and food. The rain would keep the dust down as all the roads were gravel from here east.

This was the only moose we saw on this trip.

With bellies full we prepared to head east in search of the fabled trail thru the bush.

The haul road that heads east was in pretty good shape. With the downturn in the forest industry there isn't much traffic.

About 70 km east the road crosses the Jackfish river.

The drizzle and light rain was off and on. As we got farther north east it got a little colder. As we got closer to the trail we needed to find the roads got smaller. Stopping to check the maps.

The tracks on the road are fresh moose tracks.

We eventually found the trail we were looking for. It consists of a set of ruts thru the bush. Someone drove a skidder between 2 cuts and left a possible path.

We walked in a bit to have a look. The ruts were full of water/mud/muskeg and the mosquitoes were terrible. All the specs in the picture are mosquitoes . By the time we found the trail it was getting late and after surveying the effort to get thru the kilometer or so of trail we figured it was time to call it a day and head home.

Stopped on an exposed section of road to have a break where the bugs arn't to bad.

The weather got worse with steady rain coming down.

An artistic excavator operator showed off his handiwork. Each of these was about 8 feet high.

A busted down pick up

We headed back into Armstong for a fill up of gas and food. By now it was a steady rain and still around 8C. By the time we got back to Thunder Bay it was anout 9:30. Put on about 750 km on a long cold day

We may try again in early August if it stays dry up north. Hopefully we can pick a warmer day.

canuckAME screwed with this post 07-12-2009 at 04:53 PM
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Old 07-12-2009, 03:42 PM   #2
Joined: May 2009
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Familiar Territory

That area looks very familiar. I used to go fishing every year not to far from Jellicoe. I'd say it's a good thing those logging trucks weren't cruising those roads since they pretty much own them!
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Old 07-12-2009, 03:49 PM   #3
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Great riding in the north.. but the weather can be chilly! Thanks for the report and pics
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Old 07-14-2009, 10:58 AM   #4
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Thanks for posting.
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Old 07-15-2009, 08:05 PM   #5
Take off, EH!
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Looks like fun, try again for sure.
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:48 AM   #6
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That's what I think of when I hear of Nipigon. Great big honkin' specks....aka, Brookies.

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Old 07-16-2009, 11:49 AM   #7
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We're thinking if we don't get a lot of rain that we may give it another try towards the middle of August. Hopefully it will have dried up a bit. Maybe the sun will even come out.
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:49 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Powershouse View Post
That's what I think of when I hear of Nipigon. Great big honkin' specks....aka, Brookies.


I have caught specks in the Pikitigushi and Little Jackfish Rivers up there. I used to work in Armstrong but didn't have a bike when I was there.
Hasd anyone tried this trip lately?
I have ridden around the top of Lac Seul which is a similar kind of trip. I think the roads are a lot better though and the only real challenges are the washouts. Damn beavers!
Flat tires can be a challenge too.
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