Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

Other Canoe Journeys – Springtown


Springtown is about halfway between Burnstown and Calabogie on highway 508. Turn west in the middle of Pakenham Village (past Scoops) onto the White Lake Road, travel north through White Lake to Burnstown and west to Springtown. Just past the village, cross over the bridge and put your canoe in on the north side of the road. There is plenty of parking space. Explore the small lake (I don’t know its name). Watch for submerged stumps. On the north shore, paddle into Holiday Creek. You can easily paddle as far as the culverts and even go through them if there is enough water. However, you can’t get much further than that. After exploring the small lake and creek, paddle throught the cement culvert under the highway and into to Madawaska River. A few dozen yards to your right is a very short dock. You can stop here and have lunch (with permisssion of property owners). A paddle around this part of the river is interesting and picturesque. A word of caution: With great regularity, excess water is released into the Madawaska from the dam at Calabogie. The extra water pours through the culvert into the small lake at a fast clip. Experienced paddlers know how to paddle through this current but, if you are not sure, wait until the current drops.

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Canoe Journeys – #22 Smith Falls Marshlands and Poonamalie Lock Station

Smiths Falls Marshlands  and Poonamalie Lock Station

#22 (Smiths Falls area)

How to Get There: Smiths Falls on Abbott St.

Launch Site: Upper Reach Park by canal. Look for open cantilever bridge. Car charge $3 at volunteer post.

The Paddle: Extensive marshlands. Follow shoreline counterclockwise leading into canal channel with markers to Poonamalee Lock Station for lunch. Watch For: Teeming flora and fauna in marshlands. Osprey nest across from launch site. Martin house between boathouses. Seasonal Information: Best in spring until mid July and again in September/October.


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Canoe Journeys – #13 Robertson Lake

Robertson Lake

#13 (Lanark Highlands)

How to Get There: From Almonte, take County Rd.16 (Wolf Grove Rd.) to County Rd. 511 at Hopetown. Turn north to County Rd. 16 and West to Robertson Lake. Take sharp turn to Lavant. From Perth take County Rd. 511 north.

The Launch Site: Public park. Parking on site. Small car fee may be levied.

The Paddle: Due to prevailing winds circumnavigate lake clockwise in morning, counter clockwise in afternoon. Return to park for lunch and swim at sandy beach. Picnic tables.

Watch For: Marsh birds along shores. Bass spawning beds at far end of lake.

Seasonal Information: Picturesque and relaxing lake. Magnificent fall colours. Good until freeze-up.


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Canoe Journeys – #11 Riven Lake and the Little Clyde River

Riven Lake and the Little Clyde River

#11 (Lanark Highlands)

This is a cute, easy paddle providing there is enough water in the river. All through the area, you will hear and see alder flycatchers plus many more bird species.
How To Get There: From Perth take County Rd. 511 past Hopetown and next left past County Rd. 16 at Lammermoor Rd. From Ottawa take Hwy. 7 past Carleton Place to County Rd. 15 to Lanark Village and County Rd. 511, then north to Lammermoor Rd. The Launch Site: 1/2 km on Lammermoor to double culverts. This is Little Clyde River.

The Paddle: Upriver as far as you can go (subject to beaver dams). For entrance to Rivens Lake, keep right. Small lake interesting to ircumnavigate. Good picnic area on rocky bluff. For downriver, go through the culvert at launch site.

Watch For: Nesting alder flycatchers and other marsh species. Portage beaver dams with caution. Downriver may be plugged at culverts.

Seasonal Information: River best in spring and early summer.

It was early June when we did this trip and there was plenty of water. In dryer times, you might find the river blocked in a few places by beavers. Depending upon your confidence, you can get over these dams easily and continue. Enjoy.

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Canoe Journeys – # 26 Pike Lake

Pike Lake

#26 Pike Lake (Tay Valley Township)

Pike Lake is one of those lakes that seems to have always been there as one passes nearby on County Road 10 travelling from Perth to Westport but never considers it as a canoeing lake. Travelling to Pike Lake from home (Clayton) takes about fifty minutes and is just within the parameters of journeys no more than one hour from home.

Pike Lake’s most interesting face is along the south-east shore. The scenery includes several islands, an extensive wetland served by a half km. creek and an interesting and varied shoreline. The north-west shore seems to hold wall-to-wall cottages and trailers.

We found a great place to put in for a picnic lunch on the south end of a substantial peninsula but, there are other spots on the various islands (with permission of property owners). We didn’t get to the southern end of the lake for, we ran out of time. You can explore that end and report to us what you found. Have a good paddle.

How to Get There: From Hwy. 7 go into Perth (Wilson Street, then onto Gore Street) to County Rd. 10., then west towards Westport about 15 km. Watch for faded boat launch sign on left, 1 km past turn-off to Stanleyville.

The Launch Site: The dam in Grant’s Creek. The Paddle: Up creek into lake. Stay south (left), through islands and return. Good picnic sites on islands.

Watch For: Small sandy beach in a mainland bay for swimming.Extensive wetland at east end of lake.

Seasonal Information: Good until freeze-up.


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