In The Temagami Area
1. White Bear Forest - Caribou Mountain Tower See Map
A system of six trails between 2.8 km (1.74 miles) and 6.5 km (4 miles) in length, some for beginners, others for advanced hikers, provide access to varied terrain, viewscapes and old growth forest.
The Caribou Mountain Tower, formerly used by Fire Rangers, has been renovated to include an internal spiral staircase and landing making it possible for most people to reach the top. There are two cliff lookouts that are connected by boardwalks at the base of the tower. A new interpretive centre houses Fire Ranger memorabilia and a computer interactive kiosk.
Caribou Mountain and the White Bear Forest Conservation Area can be reached very easily by car or a nice walk from the town centre. There is a more remote access, at Pecours Bay, for canoeists and motor boaters.
A short drive from Temagami, down the Lake Temagami Access Road, off Hwy. 11, gets you to a government parking and dock area. From here, a twenty minute trip by canoe or a five minute motor boat ride will bring you to the beginning of this stacked loop trail system.
You may be able to get a photocopy of an old self interpretive guide book from a local outfitter. Although be warned, the trail signage relevant to the guide book, is in disrepair. Nastawgan Trails Inc., intends to rectify this problem in the future.
The trails themselves, have been well maintained with a few steeper grades. All of the layers of the old growth forest are clearly visible and many large trees line the trail. Be prepared to spend at least a half a day on this adventure. Don’t forget to pack your lunch.Accessible by canoe from the Northeast corner of Lake Obabika, the trails pass through one of the largest continuous old growth red and white pine forests in the world. The trees, lakes and viewscapes are truly magnificent. Some sections of the trail are quite steep.There are two campsites on the trail and others on Lake Obabika, one of Ontario’s premier canoeing destinations. The trails are well signed and maintained.There is an out of print trail guide book. Detailed information can be obtained from local outfitters. A trail guide can be seen at http://www.ancientforest.org/obabika.html .
Trails in this area, are accessible by canoe and portage from Rib Lake (off Hwy. 11) or from Friday Lake (directly off of the Roosevelt Road). The main trail runs along a high ridge going southward off the Portage between Cliff and Fat (Summit) Lakes. It features a spectacular vista to the Northwest where, on a clear day, you can see a fire tower on Maple Mountain, nearly fifty kilometres (31 miles) away. For those who are adventurous the cliffs along the west shore of Friday Lake can be accessed by climbing notches (breaks in the cliff face). The slope is steep (no trails) but does not require climbing equipment. The reward is a beautiful eastern vista.
This area, traditionally called Rib Mountain, is now a Ministry of Natural Resources Conservation Reserve. As well as red and white pine trees, there also stands of sugar maples and yellow birch within the reserve. There are campsites on Cliff , Rib, Fat and Friday Lakes. Check with local outfitters.
Blueberry Lake lies East of Temagami. Canoeists can start from the town of Temagami, through Snake Island and Cassels Lakes. There is a 500 metre portage to reach Blueberry Lake which has three campsites.
are five short trails beginning from different points along the shoreline,
featuring old growth pine and birch, two look-outs, a burn (forest
fire) site and a wet land. The Lorrain Lake canoe route that was
opened in 1998, loops by Blueberry Lake and the White Bear Forest.
A guide book that outlines the trails in hard copy can be obtained
from local outfitters in the town of Temagami also these outfitters
have an excellent knowledge of all the access points to these special
areas. Temagami Outfitting and Smoothwater
From Hwy. 11b in North Cobalt head south on #567 (Lorrain Valley Rd.) to the Matabitchuan powerhouse. Park here and hike up the road behind the powerhouse. The remains of an old metal log sluice can be seen halfway up the hill. Take the first left fork (do not enter the signed private road) on to the pole road (a basically unmaintained cart track used to service a nearby hydro line). Follow this road for about 2km. over various terrain with some steep grades.
Photo coming soon!
View from Heartbreak Hill - Copper Lake
Photo: Murray Muir
On the left, at the top of a steep hill, is the junction with the Beaver Mtn. summit trail which is marked with white painted blazes. Follow the trail (steep climb) up to the top where a loop trail encircles the peak. There are spectacular vistas, from separate lookouts, to the north and south as well as the fallen remains of the old fire tower. This is the highest point on the Lake Temiskaming shoreline and possibly the best lookout in the Temagami area. About 20 metres past the summit trail junction, on the opposite side of the pole road, is the junction with an extended trail that leads to campsites on Copper and Low Down Lakes. This, and all of the above trails are detailed in the book “Discovering Wild Temiskaming” by Vicky and Murray Muir available from local outfitters and the Highway 11 Bookstore.
8. Grand Campment Bay Trail See MapThe Rabbit Lake Road heads east off of Hwy. 11 about 18km. South of the town of Temagami. Follow this road to its end (about 35km.). Get advice from local outfitters as to road conditions and incorrect turn offs. There is a large parking area at the end of the road where the trail begins. This trail can be seen on Topo Map 31 L/14 Ottertail Creek. The car park is at UTM coordinates 233038. This area is detailed on a map entitled “Owain Creek Trails” by Hap Wilson, available from local outfitters.The topo map shows the old logging road. The trail actually goes all the way down the valley to Grand Campment Bay, the site of a long gone logging camp. This is one of the most remote locations in the Temagami area. At present the trail, which has been marked with flag tape, is in disrepair with many blowdowns. The Owain Creek crossing requires wading. For those who are willing to do some bush crashing the rewards are many. Owain Creek can be followed to its mouth at Lake Temiskaming. Following the shoreline north of Grand Campment Bay leads to 250ft. high cliffs with spectacular vistas. This area has a significant moose population as well as black bear and many other species of birds, plants and animals. There are large trees of all local types.
There is a nice campsite, with a beach, at Grand Campment Bay (the end of the trail) and this area can be accessed by canoe. The majority of the Ontario shoreline of Lake Temiskaming is either a proposed conservation reserve or waterway park. This wilderness paradise is virtually unknown to backpackers and canoeists.