Longer canoe trips, those of the mulit-week and mulit-watershed sort, have intrigued me for some time, but there has always been the problem of long carries. Not everyone who participates in our programs is fit enough to carry an 80 or 100 pound boat several miles. So to facilitate these types of experiences, I just picked up a canoe cart. If you’ve never heard of them, they’re small, two-wheeled carts onto which you strap your canoe. Then you can wheel it down a road or well-maintained path. There are a bunch of them on the market, but I bought this one, figuring it’s just the thing for long carries down woods roads.
Because of my love for wilderness travel I’ve been known to sit and look at maps for long spells of time, following the water trails through the bush and thinking about the old canoe routes from place to place. As our spring semester transitions into the expedition semester, there are several long trips I’ve been thinking about. The first is to paddle from Jackman to Portage, and if there’s enough water to come all the way to Masardis. via the Moose, West Branch, Allagash, St. John, and Fish river systems. The other, which looks better and better as gas prices spike, is to do a loop that starts at our place in Masardis, goes up the Aroostook, down the Allagash, down the St. John, up the Fish, down the Little Machias, and back to Masardis. There are a few others I’ve been thinking about, as well, but they include crossing the border so for now they’re relegated to the back burner.
The canoe cart makes these longer trips much simpler logistically. I haven’t used it yet, but when I do I’ll let you know what I think of it.