Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley
Mississippi River at Pakenham

Canoe/Kayak day trips

Paddle the Madawaska River

For this summer MVFN paddle we will travel on the Madawaska River, upstream from Clay Banks Marina on White Lake Rd. south of Arnprior to the picnic site below the Stewartville hydro dam. Keep an eye out for herons, ducks, swallows, otter, and snapping turtles.  Note: At times strong downstream currents may be present as flow is affected by hydro dam operations.

Date: Sunday, August 9, 2015

Car-pooling: Meet at the Antrim Truck Stop located at 580 White Lake Rd. (County Road # 2) on the south side of Hwy 417 (exit 184 westbound) at Arnprior for a 9 am departure.

Bring: Picnic lunch, water, binoculars, lunch, bug repellent. Also  life jackets, bailer, heaving line, whistle and all required safety equipment are mandatory.

Registration: You must pre-register for this event and your MVFN membership should be be up-to-date.

For registration and further information, please contact Olga Janoska at 613-622-0910 or . If you have a canoe and need a partner, or don’t have a canoe and would like to partner, please call Olga and she will try to match you up.

In case of severe weather, this event will be cancelled. If in doubt, please call Olga’s cell phone (613-622-0910) before 8 am to check.

Paddle Bennett Lake

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Enjoy a relaxing paddle on Bennett Lake, 15 miles northwest of Perth. Explore many small coves with ducks and wetland wild flowers; also often seen here are rare black tern nests and other marshland birds.

Car-pooling: Eastern Lanark and area meet at Union Hall at the corner of the Wolf Grove and County Road 29 for an 8:30 am departure. West Lanark – meet at 9 am in Fallbrook, at the Bennett Lake Road sign.

Driving instructions to launch site on the north shore of Bennett Lake at 976 Ennis Road, west of Fallbrook: from Lanark Village take McDonalds Corners Rd (12), turn LEFT at Playfairville onto Fallbrook Rd (7), turn RIGHT onto  Bennett Lake Rd (19), and then finally LEFT onto Ennis Rd;  #976 will be on the right.

There is a fee of $5 per vehicle at the launch site at Ennis Cottages.

Bring: lunch, bug repellant, sunscreen, binoculars. You also must have all safety equipment including proper flotation gear, bailing bucket, heaving line etc.

NOTE: You must pre-register for this event.  Your MVFN membership must be up-to-date.  For registration and further information, please contact trip leader Suzanne at 613-253-2172 or  If you have a canoe and need a partner, or don’t have a canoe and would like to partner, please contact Suzanne and she will try to match you up.

In case of foul weather, this event will be cancelled.  If in doubt on the morning of the event, call Suzanne before 7:00 am to confirm.

To all MVFN paddlers and friends:

Paddle Canonto Lake

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Canonto Lake is a long and beautiful little lake just off the west corner of Lanark County, about a 1 ¼ hour drive from Union Hall, through Lavant and Lavant Station.

Come and enjoy ‘Nature from the Water’s Edge’ on this pristine northern lake.

Organizer:  Cliff Bennett

Car-pooling arrangements: Eastern Lanark and area, meet at Union Hall at the corner of the Wolf Grove and County Road 29 for an 8:30 am departure. Western Lanark area, meet in Hopetown , across from the general store for 9:00 am departure.

Bring: Picnic lunch, water, binoculars, bug juice, sunscreen, life jackets, heaving rope, bailer & whistle (all safety equipment mandatory).

Please note that you must pre-register for this eventFor registration and further information, please contact Cliff Bennett at 613-256-5013 or . If you have a canoe and need a partner, or don’t have a canoe and would like to partner, contact Cliff and he will try to match people up.

In case of severe weather, this event will be cancelled. If in doubt, call Cliff before 8 am.

 

Exploring nature from the water on Clayton Lake & Indian River

By Cliff Bennett

On an excellent Sunday morning, June 14, 2015, twenty members of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MVFN) took to the waters of Clayton Lake and the upper section of the Indian River in canoes and kayaks to explore nature on MVFN’s annual Spring Paddle.  Led by MVFN President Cliff Bennett, the flotilla of thirteen craft, seven canoes and six kayaks, meandered along the west side of the lake to Command Bridge on Galbraith Road in Lanark Highlands. Squeezing under the bridge, the group paddled easily up the Indian River, almost to the bridge at Halls Mills, but was stopped by a beaver dam.

Spring Paddle 1

Val Wilkinson and Cliff Bennett lead the way on Clayton Lake/Indian River MVFN paddle. Photo by Howard Robinson

Spring Paddle 2

The  flotilla winds its way along the Indian River. Photo Howard Robinson

After exploring the beaver dam and its construction, the paddlers returned to Clayton Lake, where they discovered a mature bald eagle, perched on a low bit of scrub on a minute island. The eagle watched cautiously as the flotilla passed by at a respectful distance and decided it wasn’t worth the bother to take off. Other birds of interest recorded by compiler Mary Robinson included two American bitterns in flight, an osprey scanning the surface looking for a fish, an Eastern wood-pewee and a winter wren in melodious rhapsody. In the distance a loon called mournfully, probably looking for its partner. Thirty-four species were counted in all. The list of birds seen is posted on MVFN’s website.

Spring Paddle 3
On Clayton Lake paddlers spot a mature bald eagle, perched in the distance on a low bit of scrub on a tiny island. Photo Howard Robinson

A brace of four painted turtles were found sunning on a log and a few dragonflies were picking off mosquitoes along the marsh plants. Freshly emerging wild rice was plentiful and several clumps of Northern blue flags were spotted along the marshy shore. Yellow pond lilies and fragrant white lilies were just beginning to burst forth.

After a lengthy paddle across Clayton Lake, all craft were beached at Howard and Mary Robinson’s lake front home for enjoyment of lunch and refreshments.

The Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists have organized canoe/kayak trips throughout the County and area for many years, with the theme being “Seeing Nature from the Water’s Edge”. The program consists of a series of day trips such as this spring paddle, as well as a four-day canoe camp in September.  The next day trip is scheduled for Sunday, July 12. For more information, please contact trip leader Sheldon Scrivens at ) or visit mvfn.ca for program and membership details.

Spring Paddle 4

Turtles sunning on a log, dragonflies picking off mosquitoes, freshly emerging wild rice, clumps of Northern blue flags and yellow pond lilies all seen from the water. Photo Howard Robinson.

MVFN Spring Paddle

Get your canoes, kayaks and paddles ready for Clayton and Taylor Lake and MVFN’s annual Spring Paddle!

Date: Sunday, June 14, 9:00 am.

Meeting place:  meet at 9 am at the Clayton Lake launch site by the dam in Clayton Village.

Bring: lunch, hat, bug juice, binoculars etc. Also you must ensure you have proper equipment including floatation gear, bailing bucket, heaving line etc.

Please note that you must pre-register for this event and your MVFN membership should be up-to-date. You may bring a friend or two.

For registration and information, please contact trip leader Cliff Bennett at 613-256-5013 or .

NOTE: In case of foul weather, this event will be cancelled. If in doubt on the morning of the event, call Cliff before 8:00 am to confirm.

The Messenger

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FULL-SIZED  CALENDAR WITH DETAILS

MVFN's natural history talks take place on 3rd Thursdays, Jan-April and Sept-November, at  Almonte United Church, 106 Elgin St., Almonte, ON. All welcome!

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