Monday, August 22, 2011

Dispatches From Nipigon- Monday August 22

Good morning Nipigon!  The coffee pictured is yesterdays, brewed at Rabbit Blanket Lake, in Lake Superior Provincial Park.  Live blogging is almost impossible here, unless I wanted to sit around some crappy truck stop here, which I don’t.  We got a late start Saturday- thankfully the boat was good enough to break down before we left instead of while we we’re ten miles into the canyon here.  The canyon is 300-400 feet deep, the river powerful, and not the place to lose your motor.  The revised plan is to explore all the accesses to the river we can find for walk and wade opportunities, which, while limited, are said to exist.  We have the kayaks and will explore some Stillwater sections, hopefully being able to paddle out to islands or reefs, or to access different shoreline structures and get out and cast.  Then we’ll locate a local boat to rent for a couple of days to hit more inaccessible areas of the river. 
We stopped in Wawa for breakfast yesterday, as thunder had preempted a campfire breakfast.  We drove through the lightening and rain, on through the spruce and granite, past muskeg sloughs and small lakes.  I wanted to stop and cast at every little creek we passed, but one word beckoned us onward- Nipigon. So onward past Obatanga, White River, the gold mines, Pukaskwa, Marathon, Terrace Bay.  Past the campy signs to small cottage resorts.  “Very, very clean” boasts one sign for a motel near White River.  White River itself spuriously claims to be the home of Winnie the Pooh- an odd claim for for a character created by an Englishman.  If Winnie the Pooh were truly from White River, his playground would have been called the “Million Acre Wood”.
Lake Superior near Neys Park

We found a lovely place to camp on Lake Jessie, part of the Nipigon system, then fished below Alexander’s dam.  With the passing of yesterday’s front, the fish seemed to be pretty well shut down.  Everyone complained that the fishing was dead.  Here’s hoping.  It’s a large, somewhat intimidating system, lots of current and big water, and without a boat this will be a challenge, but we got some good intel on places to kayak into, so we’ll give it a go, and there’s some other rivers that are worth looking into.  There were fish rising all over the lake this morning, including right in front of camp, and I had one decent fish hit a mouse pattern, a very exciting development.  There’s too much to tell, so I’m going to end it here.  Enjoy the couple of pictures, I’ll try to get some fish in them and post later this week.
Sunrise on Jessie Lake


  1. Thank you for that sunrise. I'm looking forward to more 'exciting developments"...cheers!

  2. and the adventure begins! Can't wait to hear more from the road.

  3. A very calm, peaceful sunrise...Love it!

  4. Josh, I can so relate to that wanting to stop at every piece of water on the route! Whenever I travel that country or in northern Mn. I agonize about the "big secret places" I may be "missing" that almost certainly no one fishes because they are on the way to named places! And that to me is the agony and the ecstasy of being an incurable fly fishing bum. Happy trails and tight lines. j

  5. Having just moved from the UP, your photos are a sweet reminder of that region!