Canoeing Adventures

Parent Category: CRCO Info

With a group size of 5 or more, we can customize the dates and the content of this program to suit your needs. The prices given are approximate. Please contact us for a quote that exactly fits your needs.

Description

Paull RiverThe Paull River starts about 75 kilometres north from Missinipe. The river follows a southerly course over numerous rapids and a picturesque waterfall and then into the Churchill River. The canoe trip then follows the Churchill River to Missinipe where the this trip ends.

The Paull and Churchill Rivers are in classic Canadian Shield country and consist of a series of lakes joined by rapids or falls. Flowing over the Precambrian Shield, they pass through a forested landscape of rock outcroppings and muskeg. The many lakes making up the Paull and Churchill are sprinkled with tree-covered islands. The rapids are generally short and shelflike in nature. Both novice and seasoned canoeists enjoy travel on the river because the more difficult rapids can be easily portaged by those without the skills to run them.

Paull RiverThe Paull and Churchill Rivers are very similar in nature. The only difference is their size. The Paull is a small river flowing at about 20 cubic meters per second. The Churchill flows at about 350. The rapids and the lakes of the Paull are all just a smaller version of the Churchill. You will enjoy seeing the contrast.

You will see bald eagles and white pelicans fishing below rapids, moose wading in the shallows, black bears wandering along the shore, and enjoy evening concerts by common loons at sunset. As we trace the path of the Voyageurs east, your guide will tell the stories of these adventurous times. You will learn about the flora and fauna that live in this unique boreal wilderness.

Paull RiverThe Paull and Churchill Rivers still flow free and clean, and we drink right out of the lake. The water temperature is at it’s peak, around 20 degrees Celsius, so swimming and bathing are a pleasure! On our route we will see some outfitting camps and native homes, but the area is still very much as it was 150 years ago when the voyageurs paddled it.

For more information on this period of history before you paddle the Churchill, we recommend Sigard Olson's The Lonely Land and Sid Robinson’s Canoeing the Churchill.

Costs

$2395.00 Canadian These prices are in Canadian dollars and are subject to GST.

Suggested Dates

August 11-16, 2019

With a group of 5 or more we can customize the dates to suit your schedule.

Please apply for trip before June 22, 2018.

Please include a $500 deposit with your application. We accept a cheque, Master Card or Visa. This fee is non-refundable less than one month prior to the start of the expedition. The balance is due before the start of the expedition. This may be paid in our office in Missinipe or by mail or telephone.

Itinerary

Day 0

Arrive at our base in Missinipe, Saskatchewan. Preferably arrive by early evening. We will supply accommodations for the night. Your guide will bring a waterproof barrel to you for you to pack your gear in. Your Churchill River Canoe Outfitters guide will go over the route with you and answer any questions you may have.

Day 1

After breakfast (on us) we will load into a float plane and fly to Paull Lake. The first campsite is just a couple of hours south.

Day 2 to 5

During these days you will paddle and portage your way down the Paull and Churchill Rivers. The small volume Paull River has many beautiful, runnable rapids, and prepares you well for the large volume Churchill that waits for you below Trout Portage!

Day 6

By late afternoon you will arrive at Otter Rapids. If you are ready for it you can conclude your trip with a spectacular run down this 800 m Class II rapid. Your shuttle vehicle will then take the group the remaining 6 km to Missinipe. We can arrange rides to La Ronge this evening if you must catch a flight. If you wish to spend the night in Missinipe we can again arrange a place for you to stay. We'll supply you with the evening meal and drinks. This is a great time for telling the trips' stories.



 

Parent Category: CRCO Info

Description

The Hawkrock has recently become the most sought after river in the north. There are many reasons for this. First, for a northern river it is incredibly accessible. The put-in is at Forsyth Lake, which is accessible by road 90 minutes past Points North. Within a few hours the lake turns into a narrow channel and then a low volume river that twists and turns through rapid after rapid for 85 kilometers before meeting with the Fond du Lac. From there it's another couple of days to the confluence of the Porcupine River, which is where most groups take out.
The Hawkrock and the Fond du Lac are quite similar in nature. Both are characteristic of the Athabasca Plain geological formation. This means that instead of granite shelfs, rapids tend to be long and sinuous in nature, and very interesting. Camping is in lightly treed forests covered in soft reindeer lichen and blueberry bushes. Bear paths line the shores and provide great hiking opportunities. Wildlife encounters, in particular bear sightings, are guaranteed. Like all wild bears, these ones are timid and tend to run away before you can grab your camera -- so make sure it's ready!
In the words of a visitor from South Tirol last year, Hansjörg: "Before I came to Canada I could not understand how a large animal like a bear could survive on only blueberries. Now I understand." Indeed, from mid-August onward the blueberries are infinite and if you come then, you will have trouble finding a place to set your tent so that it doesn't get stained purple!

Costs

$2995.00 Canadian These prices are in Canadian dollars and are subject to GST.

Dates

June 30 - July 6, 2019 and August 18-24, 2019
With a group of 5 or more we can customize the dates to suit your schedule.
Please apply for these trips at least a month in advance of the trip start date.
Please include a $500 deposit with your application. We accept a cheque, Master Card or Visa. This fee is non-refundable less than one month prior to the start of the expedition. The balance is due before the start of the expedition. This may be paid in our office in Missinipe or by mail or telephone.
Click here for Trip Information Guide
Click here for Registration & Application

Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Points North, either via car (a long drive) or fly from Saskatoon with TransWest Air (easy and quick). Your guide will bring a waterproof barrel for you for you to pack your gear in. Your Churchill River Canoe Outfitters guide will go over the route with you and answer any questions you may have. After dinner at Points North you will be transported to the put-in at Forsyth Lake and set up camp by the beautiful sandy beach that is also covered in blueberry bushes!

Day 2

After breakfast we load up the canoes and start! Just like that! A few hours of lake and easy flatwater travel brings you to the first easy rapids of the trip -- a perfect intro to the whitewater that lies ahead. A full day of paddling to your next campsite.

Day 3 to 5

During these days you will paddle your way down the Hawkrock River. Many swifts and rapids up to class 2+ await, including the awesome "Skirting Disaster" rapids -- stay river left on this one unless you want a really bumpy ride! By the end of Day 5 you will be able to sideslip with the best of them -- a necessary skill that will help you avoid bumping sandstone boulders on these technical, playful rapids.

Day 6-7

Eventually we reach the confluence of the Hawkrock with the mighty Fond du Lac river. Also known as the Mother River of the North, the Fond du Lac changes the paddling dramatically from the small waters of the Hawkrock. Rapids become hundreds of meters wide at points and scouting becomes mandatory to find your way over the many ledges that interrupt the technical boulder-dodging. By Day 7 we'll reach the confluence with the Porcupine and the end of the trip.

Day 8

Early Sunday morning the floatplane will pick us up and transport us back to Points North. From here it's either begin the long drive south, or hop into the scheduled flight that gets you back to Saskatoon in a couple of hours. Take your pick!
 

Parent Category: CRCO Info

With a group size of 5 or more, we can customize the dates and the content of this program to suit your needs. The prices given are approximate. Please contact us for a quote that exactly fits your needs.

Canyons, unbelievable camping, mystifying water falls, incredible fishing, exhilarating white water, and wildlife. These are some of the things waiting for you on what some describe as Saskatchewan's best canoe trip. The Porcupine River is north eastern Saskatchewan's gem. This is a must paddle river for any serious wilderness canoeist.

Description

Porcupine RiverLocated in northeastern Saskatchewan, the Porcupine River is, an unspoiled, clear-water river in a pristine wilderness setting of spectacular beauty. The river flows through numerous rapids, over a number of spectacular falls and through several canyons. Many argue this river rates Number 1 in Saskatchewan. After paddling the Porcupine, it’s hard to disagree with that assessment.

The trip is designed for those who have experience\ in running Class II+ rapids.

Very few people visit the Porcupine in a summer. The river is tucked away in a little known corner of the province. It is highly unlikely that you will see others on the river.

Porcupine RiverBald Eagles circling overhead near the top of the cliffs. You will likely see some Bears and Moose can sometimes be seen along the river. Some groups seecaribou. The fishing is incredible.

There are numerous rapids. There are only a few that absolutely need to be portaged. There are many that are questionable. The group will have to take a close look at these.

You can fly commercially from either La Ronge or Saskatoon to Points North. Or we can meet you in Missinipe and you can ride with up to Points North in our van. From there we will board a float plane and fly to Selwyn Lake. From here we will begin our decent of the Porcupine River.

The river flows into the Fond du Lac River. From here we fly by float plane back to Points North. We then board a commercial plane back toLa Ronge or ride with us in our van back to Missinipe.

Is this trip for me?

The Porcupine River is Ric Driediger's favourite river. It's the perfect blend of great paddling, remote wilderness, and spectacular scenery. It's also a challenging river, and here at CRCO we hesitate to recommend it to all but the most seasoned unguided groups.

That said, it is very doable for novice groups under the leadership of an experienced guide. If you are unsure about your group's skills, then a guided trip and catered trip on the Porcupine will be a trip of a lifetime. Do it! You will never regret spending two weeks on this perfect gem of a river!

Jim Baird has writted a brief trip report of the Porcupine River here.

Cost

$4995.00 Canadian These prices are in Canadian dollars and are subject to GST.

Dates

August 5-16, 2019

With a group of 5 or more we can customize the dates to suit your schedule.

Please apply for trip by July 5, 2019

Please include a $900 deposit with your application. We accept a cheque, Master Card, Visa or debit card (in our office). This fee is non-refundable less than one month prior to the start of the expedition. The balance is due before the start of the expedition. This may be paid in our office in Missinipe or by mail or telephone.

Itinerary

Porcupine RiverDay 1

Arrive in Points North, northern Saskatchewan. Transwest Air flies to Points North from Saskatoon each day. You can also get a ride in the CRCO van from Missinipe if you prefer to drive (12 hours from Saskatoon... you've been warned!) Your guide will meet you at the air terminal. CRCO will have a hotel room waiting for you. Plan to arrive in the late afternoon or evening. Your guide will spend the evening talking about trip details. You’ll get your own canoe barrel to repack your gear into.

Day 2

After breakfast you will board a float plane and head for Selwyn Lake and begin the journey down the Porcupine River.

Porcupine RiverDay 3 to 11

The group will paddle, portage and camp their way down the Porcupine River. From the Fond du Lac, if you have made good time and the weather is fine, there is another 15 km and a portage past Burr Falls to get to Black Lake. The stunning falls and the magnificent lake make this added effort more than worthwhile.

Day 12

The float plane will arrive to pick up the group around mid morning. Back at Points North you can catch a flight back to Saskatoon that day. If you choose to stay in Points North for the night, the group will have a meal together. Our van will then be heading back to Missinipe the next day.

Parent Category: CRCO Info

 

Western Canada's Shield Country

Description

Since 1964 Churchill River Canoe Outfitters has been the leader in providing Canadian Shield wilderness canoe tripping in Western Canada. From Sigurd Olson's "Voyageurs" (who were some of our first clients that summer!) to weekend family trips on the French Lake cicuit to individuals like Steve Rice with his many solo trips to the Hudson's Bay, CRCO has provided the full range of canoe outfitting services for over 54 years.
 
In 2019 we are offering a chance for a small group of 8 teens to spend three and a half weeks in our beautiful backyard. The goal: to learn the tools of the trade from two of CRCO's guides in a tight-knit, co-ed expedition team.
 

Getting Started

The first three days will be spent at our Basecamp in Missinipe. Our basecamp is four comfortable cabins with a large main kitchen and meeting area ("The Timberframe") and our Food Prep building. These first few days are foundational: we aim to build a team, to discover the skills and goals and dreams of each member; to draw together our resources and come up with a plan for the coming expedtiion.
 
There will also be a chance for skills development. The afternoons will be spent hitting the lake and mastering the essential strokes; working on our navigation skills; learning the CRCO sytems of packing and camp life. Camp Life at CRCO might be a bit different from what you're used to. Instead of white gas, we use fire; instead of nylon tents, we use canvas; instead of freeze dried, prepared packaged meals we use simple but nourishing staples like flour, potatoes and oil and easily obtained proteins like beans and sasuage and cheese. We learn how to package these foods and keep them dry and cool.
 
Finally, you will have the opportunity to learn about the connection of the First Nations with the boreal forests and rivers from the Cree living in nearby Grandmother's Bay. This has been their home for countless generations, and their love for their land has been passed down over the generations.
 
Mingled into this time is a chance for friendships to be sparked; a chance for the leaders to spend time with each individual team member.
 

The Expedition

The beauty of CRCO is that we are perfectly situated for some of the most incredible canoe trips right out our front door. This trip is no exception. A short ride down the road to Missinipe takes us to Nemeiben Lake and the put-in for the Nemeiben to Paull River trip. This trip combines the best of three tripping zones: small lakes with portages, similar to the lake country of Algonquin to start off with; followed by the medium volume ultra-classic Paull River with its small rapids and narrow waterways; and concluding with the mighty Churchill which flows powerfully east towards the Hudson's Bay at over 500 cms.
 
Each phase of the trip will accompany a different stage of group learning and mastery. The trip to begin with is, quite honestly, pretty tough physically. There are numerous portages, and the lake travel can get pretty complex at times. This is classic Canadian Shield country, similar to Algonquin, Temagami or Quetico/Boundary in nature except practically empty of people - very close to true wilderness. This is the time to master the paddling strokes, canoe tripping skills and leadership skills. The leaders during this time are quite hands on with lots of instruction.
 
The Paull River is where the group begins to challenge themselves in moving water, including many rapids up to Class II. There's time to play in these smaller, less-pushy rapids and figure things out.
 
The next phase of the trip is the solo time. By this point the group has been together, intensely, for two weeks and it's time to be alone! Solos are anywhere from 12 to 48 hours depending on the course flow and timing.
 
The trip concludes on the mighty Churchill River, the mother river of Saskatchewan made famous for its role as the Voyageur's highway. Deep green waters contrast with the blacks and browns of other shield waterways in Canada.The Churchill River between Paull River and Otter Rapids is one of the most unique and beautiful reaches in the Canadian Shield with everything from big lakes to narrow powerful whitewater chutes. All of the leaderships and paddling skills honed during the previous three weeks will come into play during these days and culminate with a run down Otter Rapids and the final sprint back to Basecamp dock!
 
 

Dates and Cost

July 9 to 31, 2019
 
$4950.00 regular / $3850 adjusted price
 
We are able to make the adjusted price available to families as a result of the generosity of our donors and fund raising efforts which support our Youth Program. The regular price reflects the actual cost of running this trip. Please choose the fee which is most suitable for your family. The fee you choose in no way influences the experience your camper will receive. Payment plans and financial assistance are also available. Please contact us for more information.
 
Includes: Transport from Saskatoon to Basecamp in Missinipe and back to Saskatoon; food, guiding, and group equipment (e.g. canoes, tents, cooking gear); accommodation in Missinipe during the course.
 
Does not include: Transport to Saskatoon; food or accommodation before (e.g. Day 0) or after the trip.
 

Itinerary

Sample itinerary, subject to change.

Saskatoon liaison

Day 0: There will be a liaison in Saskatoon to meet and accompany students coming to Saskatoon from out of town on the day prior to the trip start date. Airport pickup, hotel fees, and meals are not included with the trip price, please contact us for details and a separate quote for this service.

Welcome Day

Day 1: Transport is provided with a departure from Saskatoon at 7:00 am. We reach Missinipe in time for lunch &  introductions, an afternoon program, dinner at the Timberframe, and finally an evening program. Students are assigned to comfortable cabins for the next four nights.

Timberframe Basecamp

Days 2-4: Basecamp, aka bootcamp, in Missinipe sets the tone for the trip to come. Paddling skills clinics, food planning & prep, navigation, CRCO camping leadership, and a whole lot of fun including a day-long Eco-challenge mark the first days.

Expedition

Days 5-23: Our 19-day Expedition is the meat of this course. Our philosophies of canoe travel mean: we move lightly through the land; we use low technology solutions to problems; we draw on our creativity, skill, resilience and planning; we honour difference and support our new friends and teammates. 

Course End

Eventually we reach one of the most impressive rapids on the Churchill River, Otter Rapids. This rapid signifies the culmination of the trip's challenges and learning as well as the doorway back into civilization. A short paddle past the end of the rapid brings us "home" to Missinipe for our welcome, our final banquet and campfire, and a well earned rest under a roof. The next day transport is provided back to Saskatoon.
 

Guides and Safety

CRCO guides are Paddle Canada certified. Moreover, they are skilled in the CRCO way of travelling through Canadian Shield Canoe country. CRCO's long history of save travel in these waters -- close to 60 years -- as well as a carefully considered risk management plan will ensure the maximum possible safety during this course. All of our equipment is in excellent condition and build tough to stand up to the rigours of expeditionary use. Communications devices ensure continuous contact with our base, and provide the option of rapid deployment of emergency services in the event of a medical condition or an injury. While the Churchill is remote, quick access via floatplane is possible with excellent medical services available within a half hour's flight to La Ronge, the nearest hosipital. Please contact us for more details if you have questions about our guides or anything to do with the safety of our programs.
 

Parent Category: CRCO Info

With a group size of 5 or more, we can customize the dates and the content of this program to suit your needs. The prices given are approximate. Please contact us for a quote that exactly fits your needs.

Description

MacLennan LakeNorthern Saskatchewan is a canoeists paradise! The region boasts more than 100,000 lakes and many rivers, rugged rock outcroppings and forested landscapes. The MacLennan Lake area is a gem in this canoeing paradise. This canoe trip will take place in this gem.

The MacLennan Lake area is a relatively small region, only about 30 kilometres square. Yet it contains hundreds of lakes that are connected with short portages. The water in these island filled lakes is crystal clear. The shoreline is either rugged Precambrian granite rock or low and marshy. The area is remarkably beautiful.

Wildlife in the region is quite shy. But if you are willing to look—you may find Moose and Black Bear. Woodland Caribou also live in the area—but are much harder to find. You will often see Bald Eagles and Osprey circling overhead. Common Loons and various kinds of ducks are quite commonly seen as you paddle along. Mink, Otter, Fisher, Martin, Beaver, Muskrat and Lynx are some of the many land animals. Lake Trout and Northern Pike are the most common fish in these lakes. If you take the time to look, there is lots to see.

Thick forest covers the land.Black Spruce is the most common, but Jack Pine is also quite prevalent as well. In some areas the forest is made up of Aspen and Birch.

The McLennan Lake area has beautiful campsites and great swimming.

All this makes for an awesome region to take a canoe trip.

Costs

$1495.00 Canadian These prices are in Canadian dollars and are subject to GST.

MacLennan Lake

Suggested Dates

July 14 to 19, 2017 

With a group of 5 or more we can customize the dates to suit your schedule.

Please include a $300 deposit with your application. We accept a cheque, Master Card, American Express or Visa. This fee is non-refundable less than one month prior to the start of the expedition. The balance is due before the start of the expedition. This may be paid in our office in Missinipe or by mail or telephone.

Itinerary

MacLennan LakeDay 0

Arrive at our base in Missinipe, Saskatchewan. Preferably arrive by early evening. We will supply accommodations for the night. Your guide will bring a waterproof barrel to you for you to pack your gear in. Your Churchill River Canoe Outfitters guide will go over the route with you and answer any questions you may have.

Day 1

After breakfast (on us) you will load into a van and drive to MacLennan Lake (about 50 km). From here you will start our canoe trip. Your first night you will likely be camping on an island on McLean Lake.

MacLennan LakeDay 2 to 4

During these days you will paddle and portage your way through the lakes of the area. A highlight of these days will be an overnight stay at Forest House Wilderness Lodge. See www.foresthouse.ca.

Day 5

By late afternoon you will arrive back at MacLennan Lake where our shuttle vehicle will meet you to take you back to Missinipe. We can arrange rides to La Ronge this evening if you must catch a flight. If you wish to spend the night in Missinipe we can again arrange a place for you to stay. We'll supply you with the evening meal and drinks. This is a great time for telling the trips' stories.

 
 
 
 

Subcategories

Churchill River Canoe Outfitters - Box 1110 - La Ronge - SK - Canada - S0J 1L0

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