Trip Coordinators: Doug and Leslie Knight
Trip Report: Stephanie Jansen
Five intrepid paddlers started out on a July morning, refusing to be daunted by the dark clouds looming in the northeast. They made their way to Lac La Biche A&W to meet and drive out to Lakeland Provincial Park in a rainbow coloured convoy. Our group leaders, Doug and Leslie led the way followed by Stephanie, Margriet and Denise. Our first task, after eating lunch, was to locate enough canoe trailers for every member in the group to affix their boat to a cart and begin the three kilometer portage to Jackson lake. Doug and Leslie explained that sometimes the carts are still at the other end and one must hike in to pick them up, and repeat the trek with the kayak, thus increasing the journey from 3 kilometers to nine kilometers. So we were very relieved to find enough trailers at the start for the whole group. Doug gave us some pointers on tying the boats on and used words like “balancing the boat”. I admit to only partially listening to the directions as I was so eager to get going. Soon everything was loaded and we were on our way, only to experience the Many Plagues of Lakeland Provinical Park; rain, humidity, heat, hills, and thousands of bloodthirsty relentless mosquitos. My boat kept coming loose because I did not pay attention to Doug and my boat was unbalanced. It could have been that good ol’ Northwest Voyageur positive attitude or the fact that we had just met and were too polite to express our true feelings, but we plastered smiles on our faces and cheerfully proceeded up and down hills through the portage when we finally reached the lake. We unloaded our boats from the carts and then proceeded to fit all of our gear into our boats.