Filip H.A. Claeys

Trekking in Mountainous and Subarctic Regions


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Quebec 2016: Packrafting La Mauricie

Video footage of 2 days of packrafting in La Mauricie National Park, situated in the Laurentian Mountains somewhere halfway between Montreal and Quebec City.

Day 1 is the popular tour to Waber Falls. Day 2 is a tour through the park’s backcountry to Lac Dauphinais, requiring several portages.

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Quebec 2016: La Mauricie – ter

On the second day of my last weekend in Quebec I pay another visit to the national park of La Mauricie. There’s quite a bit of wind, so I go for a hike instead of a packrafting trip.

I park at the Mékinac parking and do a combination of the Mékinac and Les Deux-Criques trails. These trails lead through a hilly and densely forested area, and offer a series of lookouts on the park’s woods and lakes, as well as the Saint-Maurice river. In the afternoon I also hike part of the Les Vieux-Brûlis trail.

I will be flying back to Europe soon, so this will be the last Quebec post (at least for a while).

Pictures > Quebec 2016-09-25: La Mauricie

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Quebec 2016: La Mauricie – bis

The third and last day of the beautiful Labour Day weekend takes me and my packraft back to La Mauricie national park, where at higher elevations the first signs of autumn foliage are starting to appear. This time I leave the beaten path and do a tour that day-trippers normally won’t do as it involves several portages.

I start with a 500 m portage from the parking to Soumire Lake. On the other side of the lake is another 500 m portage to Giron Lake. Once across this lake there is a 1 km portage to the small Dubon lake, followed by a 500 m portage to Dauphinais Lake. I have lunch at the other side of Dauphinais Lake, do a bit of swimming and then return the same way to the parking.

As expected, I do not meet any day-trippers on this tour, only a number of canoeing parties that have spent the weekend camping on one of the primitive back-country camp sites around des Cinq Lake, and are on their way back to civilization.

On this trip I strap my backpack to my packraft in such a way that by putting on the backpack without detaching it from the raft, I can easily carry the raft entirely inflated. It is clear that this way I have a major advantage over the canoers, who have a hard time carrying their stuff over the slippery, stony and steep paths. Overall, I am able to proceed almost twice as fast as the canoers. They have the advantage on the open waters, while I have much more of an advantage during portages.

Pictures > Quebec 2016-09-05: La Mauricie

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Quebec 2016: La Mauricie

On the first day of the Labour Day weekend I take my packraft to La Mauricie national park, which is about half way between Montreal and Quebec City. The park is situated in the Laurentian Mountains and consists of densely forested hills dotted with some 150 lakes. Obvious activities include canoeing, hiking and canoe-camping.

I opt to make the popular tour to Waber Falls (which I in fact already did in September 2003 and July 2006). I put in at the Wapizagonke parking, paddle across the 3rd and 4th basins of the Wapizagonke lake (and the creek in between), deflate the raft, put it in my backpack and hike the 4.5 km to the falls. Afterwards, I hike another 1.1 km to Lake Anticagamac and then 2.4 km back to Lake Wapizagonke. Finally, I put in again and paddle back to where my car is parked.

Pictures > Quebec 2016-09-03: La Mauricie

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