The Making of a Cross Canada Route

Discussion in 'Canada' started by Deadly99, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. advkurt

    advkurt latecomer

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    In the White Lake area you should try the California Trail. Starts near Middleville, comes out near Cedar Cove on White Lake.
    #21
  2. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Thanks for the words of encouragment. Thanks also for the offer....I'll definetly be in touch :)

    I'm looking forward to BC as well, in a BIG way. I lived in the Bow Valley, Kootenay's and Squamish area's for about 10 years during my twenties. Spent years guiding on rivers and snowmobile guiding up in the hills and have a couple of fun valley's and mounain passes in mind :). But that's a few years away, for now I'm quite excited to explore the Rock, Quebec, Northern Ontario and Labrador :)
    #22
  3. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Hi Kurt, I know that area fairly well. A few years back I lived in Clayton Lake for about 3 years. Sadly that road and it's connecting hydro line trails didn't fit into the route, great terrain but it's a big country and we're trying to keep the route somewhat directional (East to West).

    The route has now been completed from Quebec through Lanark county and we're now concentrating on moving west through the rest of south eastern Ontario before heading north.

    I do appreciate the suggestions though. A large chunk of this is being done based on input from locals. I look forward to riding with a lot of them over the next couple of years as we make our way across the country.
    #23
  4. nicholastanguma

    nicholastanguma nicholastanguma

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    God bless you crazy Canuck FF's. Sam Correro gave us what we need to successfully tackle the TAT, and now you knuckleheads give us the equivalent TCT. Bloody brilliant! :D

    And hurry the frak up so I can buy yer guidebook.

    Totally subscribed.
    #24
  5. Bronco3738

    Bronco3738 Mike

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    That's an awesome undertaking! Looks like you are hitting some great roads, and a few others:lol3. Good luck, can't wait to see the finished product.
    #25
  6. canuckAME

    canuckAME Been here awhile

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    I applaud you on your effort so far. From experience I can tell you that going over the top of Lake Nipigon is difficult to say the least. A bunch of us from Thunder Bay have tried 3 times via 2 different routes and been successful once. Different maps show roads but most have long since grown in or had there bridges removed or washed out. We learned of a new route last summer and tried but gave up due to the cold, being soaked and to much water and way to many bugs .

    The spots that are hard to get over are around 350 km north west of Thunder Bay. You're a long way from help if someone gets hurt.

    That being said we intend to try again this summer if the weather will co-operate:evil

    You might consider the old CN rail line from Geraldton to Thunder Bay and than up to Sioux Lookout. Some really scenic stretches and from Thunder Bay to Sioux Lookout you can cruise at 100+ kph if you want.

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    Good luck:clap
    #26
  7. Dan Alexander

    Dan Alexander only happy when sad

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    Hey Ted,

    That Trail From Hell wasn't so bad!

    I only fell over 7 or 8 times, got heat stroke, almost had a heart attack and between all that plotted 3 or 4 ways to kill you slowly and painfully :D

    Ride on Brother, can't wait to get the rest done :pynd :wings :rayof :lift
    #27
  8. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Thanks for the tip about the rail line, looks perfect :). A group of us will be heading your way later this season to tackle the north route of Lake Nippigon, maybe our paths will cross......early September probably...
    #28
  9. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Nah you got it all wrong. The route will be distributed for free. Doing this because we enjoy it and we feel that we can produce a world class route for others to enjoy.

    Want me to guess at a length? Eastern half looks like it'll be approximately 7000 to 8000 km's long.
    #29
  10. Dan Alexander

    Dan Alexander only happy when sad

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    Good looking rail line!
    #30
  11. redpillar

    redpillar Been here awhile

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    Looks very very good, when you get to Vancouver Island you have an invitation to stay at my place.
    #31
  12. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    :thumb
    #32
  13. Fast914

    Fast914 Adventurer

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    Hi 99,

    I have read the whole thread to date and what a mamoth effort but, a lot of fun too. If and when you plan to get into the Maritimes, I would be more than happy to assist. I have followed up with a member of our NSORRA (Nova Scotia Off Road Riders Asssociation) Group in Nova Scotia as well to see how we / they might assist. I am not an active member of the group but, this may be just what I need to get involved.

    I will get back to you as I learn more. Once again, thanks for your initiative.:clap

    Grant
    #33
  14. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Met up with Juames and Dan mid June to push the route further west then north up to a small city called North Bay. This section of the route had been examined in detail, many many times. Originally we were to route through a town called Huntsville. That portion of the route had to be re routed due to the G8 Summit taking place in that town :huh We all knew about the G8 but somehow never put two and two together until 2 days before departure. I was a bit dissapointed as I was lookintg forward to some of the trails north of Huntsville that run along the edge of Algonquin Nation Park.

    As usual we met up at a Tim's for coffee and to look over the maps again.

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    Bike loaded up for a few days


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    This will become a reoccuring theme, blasting some slab to catch up to the route.

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    A bit of gravel thrown in for fun on the way west


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    Look out for these guys.


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    Some fun twisties :clap

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    We last left the route ending in the town of Ompah, Ontario. Ompah has a couple of nice campgrounds, a gas station/general store and a few other small businesses. This is a recommended gas stop on the route and would make a likely place to spend a night.

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    Happy to be back on the route and making progress again :clap

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    The route takes some slab for about 20 minutes before getting back into some back roads.


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    #34
  15. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    These backroads lead onto a long hydro line
    44.739296,-77.320662

    The hydro line seemed to be in good shape. I had done a trip a couple of weeks back where we rode a long hydro line/back road section that I was sure was this section. It only took about a few minutes to realize that this hydro line wasn't the one I thought we'd be riding. A quick look at the map again just to double check we were in the right place that we'd highlighted for the day's route. Yep this is the one we had pencilled in, ah well it looks long (50+ km's) and so far it seems to be in good shape ..........

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    A nice gravel base, well travelled, looking good :evil

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    Things started to get wet. Water crossing after water crossing. The good news was that they all seemed to be gravel based and the water level's never got over the front tire.

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    Some of the water crossing got real dark and murky. A red tint to the water from some mineral in the ground I suppose. Looks cool but a bit unnerving when you don't know how deep they were. We did due dilegence and pre walked a few of the more suspect one's just to be on the safe side.

    Juames takes one for the team :clap Heck once your wet your wet, you can't get more wet :rayof


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    Dan getting a big kick out Juames getting wet......his turn will come :evil


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    And on we go.


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    These are the one's that make you nervous. Weeds on the side, trail going off into the bush and turning a corner so you can't see how far the water keeps going.


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    At this point I starting to think that this is working out pretty damn well. Lot's of water, but this should be close to high water level's and we haven't come across anything that doesn't have a gravel bottom or is too deep.

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    The water crossing with the large rocks in them require a slow and steady speed. Just enough so you bounce up over the rocks but not soo much that you'll endo. Going to slow will lead to a tip over and you come to a stop and loose momentum. But there are so many of them that we are all in a groove and doing fine.

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    My turn to walk one :cry You just have to know that at some point your luck will run out. Better safe than sorry.


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    I don't have a pic but I think this is the one Dan decided to cool off in after a tip over ? Never a camera around when you need one eh Dan :evil
    #35
  16. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Now don't get me wrong, this trail wasn't just water crossings. There were also some very fun dry sections.

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    Just as things were going well, we check the gps and maps. Looks like another 6 km's until we pop out onto a road again. yehaa almost there ! Minutes later we come over a rise and are greeted by this view.

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    A quick conversation is had..... where is the trail? That can't be it ...that long dark watet section....it's got to go out and around in the bush and we just can't see it..... well let's head down and find out ....


    If it wasn't for the unknown "where does the trail go now feeling" this would have been a nice vista. I love when the trail your riding dissappears from your line of sight in the horizon.

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    Well down we go. Loose rocks, steep and I can't help but notice that it doesn't seem like many vechicles came down here. Grass growing out of the middle of the track .... hmmm .......

    Get to the bottom and are greeted by this view :cry :cry :cry

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    A quick look around and I can see a fire pit, old spark plugs, old rubber belts from a truck and other signs that some one spent the night here working on a vechicle. Sh1t, damn, arg. Juames goes and checks the inevitable, slick mud bottom and about 20 feet in he sinks to past his knee's :becca

    Damn we were so close to the end of this trail. Did we go the wrong way somewhere ? A quick check of the map shows that we are on the right track.

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    Why is that everytime I get stuck it's at the hottest point in the day, humidity jumps, and the bugs come out for a feeding frenzy. I guess being down low here out of the wind and right besdie a swamp explains it, but still ..........

    Ah crap we're going to have to ride back up that steep hill covered in loose rocks :huh I don't see this working out too well for us.
    #36
  17. GiorgioXT

    GiorgioXT Long timer

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    Outstanding effort !
    When we crossed Canada many years ago (1988) I wonder if it was humanly possible to trace such a route !

    Should find a way to come back and ride ...maybe next year!:deal
    #37
  18. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Indeed, without internet it would be VERY time consuming. Being able to zoom in with satellite maps, getting info from local's via the web, scrounging through ride reports on sites like this one makes it a much easier task. As we have found out it doesn't make it idiot proof but certainly makes it feasible. It would be even easier to just make a route on your computer and hand it out, never even ridden, but as we found out that wouldn't work well. We plan to ride every section of this route, at least once before we make it available.
    #38
  19. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

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    Got to the top of the hill looked back and saw this

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    What you can't see is Dan in almost the same position further down the hill. Why pictures make hills look lame is beyond me but this one was fairly steep and the rocks were very loose. A bit of pushing and grunting and we all got back under way to retrace our path.

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    And yes I put the camera down and helped out :D

    Riding through all the water was much easier when you have confidence of what's under it.

    After some debating over the maps we found another trail that lead off the hydro line. This enabled us to keep apart of the hydro line in the route :clap .

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    Check out the BIG bug in the above photo :huh

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    Part way along the side trail (which turned out to be fun and fast) I had a quick chat with a local guy who has a hunt cabin in the area and know's the lay of land fairly well. I mentioned we had come from the hydro line and he laughed and said "you didn't make it did you, that swamp gets deep". Looks like we made a good call on turning around. he did however mention that there is a go around but it involves riding up and over and through a large boulder garden. He laughed when I asked if it was doable on our bikes. "I did see someone do it on a bike but it was a small little dirt bike". Enough said for us, we're here to make a route for bikes packed with gear, not to create the world's hardest enduro course.

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    After a few miles of the new trail we came across this and I thought ah come on :boid

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    It appears as if the bridge is just getting some work done to it, yehaa...finally the route is progressing :clap

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    Came across this little stream which was great to cool off in.

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    Rolled into the small town of Flinton Ontario. Not much here but a small general type store with a sweet lady who makes soup and sandwichs. Great food, I'd highly recommend stopping in when you come through here. real salt of the earth type of folks. Heck she even felt bad about overcooking my grilled cheese and apologized and offered to make me a another one at no charge. This is why I enjoy travelling through these out of the way places, the people are golden.

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    After lunch we broke out the maps and figured out how to get back on track. It looked like there were some gravel roads heading back to where we wanted to be. Sadly it'll involve a few short paved sections but it's the best we could come up with. Sometimes a bit of slab just to get the wind running through your jacket can be a good thing :D

    Off we go....we make it about another 30 km's down a gravel road and stop at a stop sign. I take off and ride another 20 km's and wait at the next intersection...where is everyone? Wait an appropriate amount of time then start retracing back to where I last saw them. You can't help but think one of three things has happened.
    One: Someone had an accident
    Two: Someone had a mechanical
    Three: I went the wrong way and now the epic how do we find each other again begins

    Well turns out it was option two. Juames bike has had an electrical glitch of some sort and has no power. When I get back to them his bike is stripped of gear, seat, fairing, etc Much poking and prodding and trying this and trying that and we came up with either the battery is toast (he just put a new one in a month or so earlier or he has a short that draining the electrical system). Lucky for us it was the KLR and not one of the KTM's. A KLR doesnt require a battery to run. The ignition runs off the stator :clap A few attempts to get it bump started and away we go...only to see it die again another 100 metres down the road. The petcock had been turned off when we were about to remove the tank :deal

    A group decision was made, do we camp for the night then find someone with an voltage reader in the morning or do we call it quits and head home. Well we decided to head home. Hard call indeed. The tipping of the scales was that two of us are married and getting a weekend off to go biking isn't something we get to do every week, so it was decided that it would be better to limp home, get the problem sorted out and return in two weeks to finish making this section of the route. (I know your thinking your married and you get to do this much biking? Well Mrs. Deadly either doesn't like me or she understands me and puts up with me taking off many times a year for bike trips....... I think....I hope...it the latter :rofl )

    A stop for dinner on the way home and a few coldies to drown our sorrows in.

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    There's something about having a cold one after riding with your buddies and recalling the moments of the day that simply puts a smile on your face.

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    After a retarded session of trying to bump Juames bike and subsequently sweating out the bevies we headed home. Juames must have been cutting it close with his little to no headlight due to no battery before it got dark.

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    Well another chunk of the route got completed, we had a good time and rode some fun terrain :clap
    #39
  20. juames

    juames Have Fun, Don't Die!

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    Notice the mountains on the bottle are blue! I was pretty bummed at this point...my bike has never let me down before...but some how those blue mountains made things a little better!:1drink
    #40