Lakes / Rivers Traveled:
Bad Medicine Lake
Travel Time: 8:49
Distance: 12.8 miles / 20.6 km
I was inside my tent last night before 09:30 pm. It was plenty warm inside it. I was sweating inside my sleeping bag. The moon was still shining brightly through the tent .
I woke up at 05:00 am so I knew I had another hour before I needed to get up. I woke up again at 05:45 am. When I got outside of the tent 16 minutes later the moon was almost full. It was shining and reflecting off the water. I got a fire going for coffee.
A light breeze began to blow. It looked like a SW wind, but later it was coming mostly out of the south.
We paddled across to the take-out to Bad Medicine Portage at 1020 am. (UTM # 86)
Dave took the canoe and off he went. I usually hang back a couple minutes since he usually takes a little more time to maneuver the canoe around the different obstacles. Dave carried the canoe the entire length without having to put it down. It took him 29 minutes to accomplish that feat. Those who have travelled this portage know what it takes to do it. The put-in (UTM # 87) is down a steep and rocky decline.
It took me 26 minutes. I caught up with Dave, but there wasn’t anyway I could get around him. The length was about 419 meters. The second carry took me only 14 minutes.
By 11:58 am I was done with my three carries. When Dave shows up we’ll have to get all the gear down a steep 5 meter drop to the water.
Dave was finished with his carries at 12:20 pm. At 12:37 pm we were at the take-out on Bad Medicine Lake. (UTM #88). The take-out was nice and sandy. We had lunch at the take-out once we unloaded the canoe. It was 12:43 pm when we started lunch. When we were done with lunch at 01:06 pm we started our carries. The portage appears to have been a well used portage in the past. There was another steep decline to the put-in. (UTM # 88). This portage was only 203 meters long that took me 6 minutes to cross with one carry. I forgot to write the time when we finished it.
I had seen another possible take-out area that was further to the right of this one. We paddled over to it and saw that it had recently had cleared. There was another steep decline to the water at the put-in.
Someone had left a small chainsaw bar with some chainsaw tools on a stump. Also, leaning up against another tree stump was a Rapala X Strato fishing pole with a bronze Rapala fishing reel.
The second portage after Ratte Lake. Take-out (UTM # 92) and the put-in (UTM # 93) We arrived at 04:28 pm and were done with it at 05:03 pm. The length was 113 meters long.
We arrived at a campsite on Derraugh Lake at 05:24 pm. (UTM # 94).
There was a strong southerly wind that we paddled into on the larger bodies of water today.
We set up camp then we both looked at our maps. Dave updated his maps as I read to him my notes from my field notebook. We looked at what was possibly in store for us tomorrow.There was one long portage. It was marked as being close to a mile long. Could we paddle the river or would we need to walk it? As usual we wouldn’t know until we got there.
There were some clouds moving in from the SW tonight. Hopefully the rain would hold off for another day.
I was in my tent around 08:50 pm trying to finish up my journal entry for the day.
Today was Dave’s pick for the best tent spot, so tonight I have the less desirable spot. Yesterday was my pick on Cliff Lake. We have been alternating on who gets the first pick.
I thought I made a good decision until I laid down. I needed to put my PFD under the sleeping pad from about my butt down in attempt to make it level. Once I did it everything was ok. The only complaint was I was too warm in my sleeping bag.
This trip has been an experience. I’ve never done a trip of this length. It was a challenging route to begin with before adding in the extremely high water. This high, fast moving water caused the rapids and standing waves to be much bigger than normal. This in turn caused us to portage where we might normally line or track with the canoe. We needed to cut our way across land when we couldn’t paddle, line or track.
Dave is a real go getter. His paddling skills have greatly improved over this trip. Due to the weight difference this cause us some problems earlier on, especially combined with the five heavy packs.
It’s 09:12 pm and I’m going to get some rest. I’ll need it if we have to triple portage the 1450 meter portage tomorrow.