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  S U P E R I O R : Michipicoten Island - July 4th Weekend

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Author Topic:   S U P E R I O R : Michipicoten Island - July 4th Weekend
Buckda posted 03-28-2006 10:05 PM ET (US)   Profile for Buckda   Send Email to Buckda  
Is there any interest in an extended long holiday weekend from WAWA (Buck's Marina) to MICHIPICOTEN ISLAND in Lake Superior?

The Island is part of the Ontario Provincial Park system and features a healthy caribou and beaver population with sandy and pebble beaches on the south side of the island and boulder beaches with bluffs and cliffs on the north side.

I'm thinking this would be a trip out there, then two nights, one day or three nights, two days on the island.

It's a 50 mile, open water run from Buck's Marina.

Buckda posted 03-29-2006 04:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
It has been difficult to find much official information on this island, which is currently part of the Ontario Provincial Park system.

I did find this official document that better describes the island (it is a land-use and development document that is designed to help the province determine appropriate use and development moving forward. There are interesting entries here, re: Camping and motor boating (Existing use only). I’m trying to figure out what “existing use” means for a proposed trip out there via Whaler.).

It is located here: http://crownlanduseatlas.mnr.gov.on.ca/pdfs/P1769.pdf

It appears that the woodland caribou was introduced to the island in the 1980’s.

There is an abandoned wooden lighthouse on the island (built in the 1800’s and abandoned in 1918).

It appears that it has become quite a kayaker’s destination, as there is quite a bit of information about the island on kayak-oriented Web pages, and a ferry service exists for these types of excursions and there are several “adventure” guided packages for kayakers.

It appears to be backcountry camping/hiking with a few small inland lakes on the island with a good trout population.

Should the weather not cooperate for this trip, alternative sights out of Wawa could include the cliffs of Old Woman bay and the surrounding areas, which would certainly provide enjoyable afternoon cruises in all but the most inclement of conditions.

Should weather deteriorate to the point of making Eastern Lake Superior un-boatable, we could retreat to the Sault and explore the protected waters of the St. Mary’s river.

Any takers?

Plotman posted 03-30-2006 12:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for Plotman  Send Email to Plotman     
Can't do over the 4th because of family commitments, but I'll throw out a suggestion anyway. Drive an extra 2 hours down the road to Marathon, and head over to the Slates. I've beento both, and the slates offer much more interesting boating. Michipicoten only has one decent harbor, otherwise you are pretty exposed to the lake.

And with the type of exploing you like to do Dave, you should really look into joining the Great Lakes Cruising Club - their member written guidebook is the best there is on the great lakes, and the main reason most people join.

David

Buckda posted 03-30-2006 06:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
David -

I hear you.

The Slate Islands are on my list as well.

Michipicoten Island, I think, could be a pretty quick trip, given the distance from port (Wawa) is about 60 miles, there is only one real harbor to seek shelter in and the rest of the trip would be exploring and camping. I'm thinking two days on the island and a half day on each end for the crossing...plus travel time to Wawa.

This is just me taking aim at my list, detailed here:
http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/011205.html

I'd like to take a longer vacation (perhaps two weeks) to revisit Isle Royale and with a side trip to the Slates. Perhaps this summer, but perhaps next.

One of my overall boating goals is to circumnavigate the great lakes in my 18' Outrage. I'm about 1/8 of the way there from my current boating, but have a whole lot of boating left!

Dave

Buckda posted 05-04-2006 07:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
I’m still looking for interested parties…I’d like to go with at least one other boat, if possible.

This island is known as the “wild heart” of Superior – there are some great logbooks from Kayakers who have visited the island, and while it has only one really sheltered harbor (Quebec Harbor) there are a few other areas that could be used for day-time anchorages for shore-voyages of the cliffs, waterfalls, sea caves, lakes and abandoned mines that are on the island.

If you’re interested, or think that you might be, let me know – I’m flexible on the dates, I’d just like to try to make it happen.

If the weather closes in and it cannot happen, the alternate would be to divert south to Sault Ste Marie and explore the St. Mary’s River system down to Drummond Island and back.

There are some hefty “range” requirements for this trip. It is 50 miles out from Wawa to the island, and 45 miles to circumnavigate it…total of about 150 miles traveled without opportunity for fuel. An extra tank or two are recommended. I think my range with the twins has been extended to about 220 miles at most efficient cruise, I’m thinking that I’d take with me about 15 gallons of reserve fuel in external tanks.

It is also probable that there could be weather-related delays (or weather-related cancellation of the trip from Wawa), hence the alternate plans for the St. Mary’s river system.

I don’t want to let this idea die…

…and by the way, if your boat does not have the “legs” for this trip, please let me know…I’m looking for a navigator who shares the desire to see this island.

Dave

Buckda posted 05-05-2006 12:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
...someone with a canoe would also be welcomed...

:)

Buckda posted 05-05-2006 10:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
More extensive information about this island (Wish I found this earlier!):
http://www.wildheart-ventures.com/mich_home.html
Royboy posted 05-06-2006 08:49 AM ET (US)     Profile for Royboy  Send Email to Royboy     
Looks like an awesome adventure. I'd love to go, but it's probably not in the cards this year.

Roy

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