2006 Seventeenth Annual

Thanksgiving Mantario Canoe Trip

aka Full Moon Deal

2006 October 6-9




Paddled on 6 lakes a total of 18 km each way:
Big Whiteshell Lake, Ritchey Lake,
One Lake, Two Lake, Three Lake, Mantario Lake.

The five portages, totalling 4 km, were challenging as usual but the ten paddlers worked together as a team on the portages as we did at the cabin; what a great crew!



Participants: Lorne, Cristabel, Marlene,
Martin, Ed, Cindy,
Cheri, Murray, Tripat (Trip)
Leader and organizer: Donna Kurt



View the essence of the trip in this slideshow movie on Youtube:

Photo © 2006 Cheri
(Plays for about 5 minutes).



This was the first trip to Mantario for Trip and Cindy, and the first Thanksgiving Canoe trip to Mantario for Murray, Martin, Marlene and Cheri.

It was a bit windy but otherwise a nice day on Friday for the trip to the cabin. It was T-shirt sunny on Saturday when most of us hiked the Mantario Trail up to Hop Lake to visit the remains of Kolanski's cabin, and along the way we found a beautiful rock outcrop which could provide emergency shelter to hikers. Images of this part of the trip are in the slideshow (above link).

Group of seven kickin' it up with the cabin in the background.
Photo © 2006 Cindy.

Sunday was cooler and drizzled for a while, but this didn't stop the group of seven from hiking the circle trail to Olive Lake where they found a geocache and the wonderful scenery of Moosehead Lake.

Unexpected geocache found at Olive Lake.
Photo © 2006 Ed.

We coined the trip the "Full Moon Deal" because we had some wonderful full moons to watch, as well as the stars, following saunas and relaxation after fairly active days. Also, the organizer was told that the breakfasts and suppers were very good (everyone brought their own lunches) so the term is a play on McD's pOOpular slogan.

Monday blew in on a cold north wind so we wore toques, mittens, goretex and hats for the paddle back to our city lives. On the way out, we saw a family of otters on One Lake, as usual. The bald eagle that always oversees our crossing of Big Whiteshell Lake safely escorted us once again.

Ready for a cool paddle on the way back to the city.
Photo © 2006 Donna Kurt.



Quotes from some of the participants:

Lots of bouquets to Donna Kurt for organizing and leading the trip. And Thanks to Lorne for all the work he did with firewood while we all went out to play. Before Mantario, I thought people who jumped into cold Canadian lakes in October were demented. After Mantario and the sauna, of course, my view changed considerably. What an awesome experience! Many thanks for the paddle, hikes, food and most of all friendship. I can't wait to return. Laying down in the Labrador tea bogat Kolanski's cabin and being blanketed by it's sweet, wild aroma, the camaraderie of everyone on the trip, "waiting" for Lorne. The most exciting thing about it is finding out what the skills are of the new people, and our skilled leader. Donna Kurt is a very experienced paddler. As a group, we brought together a lot of skills.It was a great opportunity to talk to others without the distractions of all our modern conveniences, and coming back with new friends. Great trip. It was a really good group, great weather, great food; great fun! The geocache and how it was found. Laying in the Labrador tea at the Kolanski cabin, and the Kolanski ghost stories in the sauna! Cheri and her heavy portaging load and interesting canoe yoke. Cindy graduating from someone who wouldn't jump into the lake after the sauna to someone who wouldn't stop jumping into the lake. We were lucky to catch the last bout of warm weather this year. Even so, the lake was cold enough to shock me when I jumped in.The portages were blissfully dry, the aspens still retained their leaves so that the scenery was bright and colourful. The morning before we left we were priviliged with a cotton-candy pink mist covering Mantario Lake, which slowly dissipated as the sun rose higher. Kolanski's cabin was difficult to find and barely identifiable, but interesting nonetheless. There was a stark contrast between his lifestyle and our hectic modern ways. We were a diverse group of daredevil go-getter nature-nuts who thought nothing of scaling some steep rocks to explore off the beaten path. We ate well! After paddling for more than seven hours on seven lakes and hauling gear over five portages, arriving exhausted but energized at the cabin on Mantario Lake. Clambering up a big billion year old (or more) Pre-Cambrian boulder at the shaky bridge near Olive Lake during a day hike and spotting the metal Geocache box hidden behind a corner of a nearby rock. Inside, the box, a former Canadian Armed Forces munitions container, were a compass, a tiny propane stove, a notebook, pen, a disposable camera, a small flashlight, a little handsaw, and a folded brochure describing Geocache, among other things. We signed our names in the notebook, as the instructions in the box indicated, and then took pictures with the enclosed camera. A couple of individuals in our group took items and replaced them with objects of their own, as the instructions said we could. After closing the box, we returned it to it's original resting spot. The message inside the box said it had been placed there in August 2005.

The thrill of discovering the decaying remains of Kolanski's cabin amidst a lush bed of Labrador tea plants by Hop Lake.

The satisfaction of renewing a couple of old friendships, and making new ones; and experiencing, once again, the exquisiteness and timelessness of Mother Nature.



Here are the words for the song "Bound By The Beauty" by Jane Siberry, the music playing in the slideshow (click on the fullmoon image near the top of the page):

"Bound By The Beauty"

I'm bound by the fire
I'm bound by the beauty
I'm bound by desire
I'm bound by the duty

I'm coming back in 500 years
and the first thing I'm gonna do
when I get back here
is to see these things I love
and they'd better be here
better be here better be here

And first I'm going to find a forest
and stand there in the trees
and kiss the fragrant forest floor
and lie down in the leaves
and listen to the birds sing
the sweetest sound you'll ever hear

And everything the dappled
everything the birds
everything the earthness
everything the verdant
the verdant the verdant the verdant green

I'm bound by the fire
I'm bound by the beauty
I'm bound by desire
I'm bound by the duty

I'm coming back in 500 years
and the first thing I'm gonna do
when I get back here
is to see these things I love
and they'd better be here

And then I'm going to find an open field
and lie down in the flowers
and then I'm going to find a guitar
and play play play for hours
and then I'm going to find a river
to see what kind of body in

And everything the granite
everything the kiss
everything the earthness
everything the verdant the verdant the verdant dream

I'm bound by the beauty
I'm bound by desire
I'm bound to keep returning
I'm bound by the beauty of the light
the slightest change
the constant rearrange
of light upon the land
I'm bound by the beauty of the wind
that blows across the earth
the unfetteredness the wheatness
and through the flying hair
the slowness of the falling leaves
across this warm November door
and the geese the flying southness
the arms out evermore
I'm bound by the snow
the soft the fallingness
the everupward face...
the everupward face...
bound by the sunsets
the rivers
the music
the beauty...

Visit Jane Siberry (now known as "Issa:) at www.sheeba.ca



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