Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Killarney, David Lake Loop - 2005

It was mid September and time for a quick getaway canoe trip with Jan and the dogs, but where to go on short notice? Well, Killarney Provincial Park is close and quick as we live in Sudbury, so with a call to the reservation system we managed to get 3 nights on David Lk and a night on Johnnie Lk. Perfect, a trip with minimal paddling and portaging and a chance to relax and hike up to Silver Peak. We left Sudbury on Wednesday and after picking up our permit at the park office we backtracked to the Bell Lk access point and we're on the water by 11:15. A quick paddle down Bell Lk. gets us to the portage into the creek connecting Bell and David lakes. We had a quick lunch after completing the portage. Another short paddle to the portage into David and we 're off to find a campsite. Some canoeing friends had suggested that campsite 101 was a nice site with a view of the setting sun and fortunately it was not occupied so we set up camp.

The next day dawned with the threat of rain in the air and overcast skies. After a leisurely breakfast and generally lazy morning it began to rain just as we were about to go for a hike on the ridge behind camp; so we spent most of the day under the tarp drinking tea and reading books. The rain finished in the late evening before we retired and with the next day's promise of better weather, we made our plans to hike up to Silver Peak.. After breakfast we gathered our day packs, cameras, binoculars and a lunch and launched the canoe and headed to the west side of David for the portage into Boundary Lk. This portage also connects to the hiking trail up to Silver Peak. The morning started out cool and without a cloud in the sky, a great day for hiking. It is a strenuous hike to the peak and the trail passes over and along exposed quartzite ridges and through forested areas. The trail climbs up and down for approx 2 km or so and then steadily climbs to the peak. In all it took us a little more than 2 hours from David Lk to the top at a fairly steady pace. The elevation change from David Lk to the peak is about 300 metres. Once on top the effort it takes is well rewarded with stunning views in all directions. We could see Georgian Bay and Manitoulin Island to our south and west, the town of Espanola and of course Sudbury and the stack at Inco's smelter. The vistas are stunning with the white quartzite ridges contrasting with the greens and blues of the forest and lakes.

Saturday arrived with sunny and clear skies and we packed and headed off to Johnnie Lk through the portages from David to Clearsilver Lk and then into Johnnie Lk. We met several groups of people along the trails and lakes all heading to Silver Peak for the day. We stayed at campsite 63 on Johnnie Lk., a large site nestled into a stand of Hemlock facing the west. In the morning with the threat of rain again, we packed and headed for the takeout on Bell Lk. A quick paddle, portage and loading of gear and dogs we head for home just as the rain starts. A quiet, relaxing trip for sure, Killarney a place of rugged beauty and diversity, a place to continue to explore.


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