Paddlers reach Boundary Rock

mp0348Boundary Rock is near (sort 0f) the intersection of the boundaries of three Nova Scotia municipalities – Shelburne, Yarmouth, Digby – way off in the wilderness. At one time it was quite out in the open and frequently visited as you will see in an early photo. Today, as you will find from the report, it is a much more grown up and harder place to find. Thanks to Will Poole for the story of their adventure.

Boundary Rock Oct 13/12-Oct 16/12

Oct 13/12
Will Poole, Corey Ritchie, Matt Hemeon, Dan Peacock, Donovan Blauvelt

All met at Indian fields around 0600, drove to Silvery Lake, road is getting bad took about 2hrs to drive in. From silvery lake portaged to Roseway Lake, had brought canoe carts as portage trail (1000m?) trail into roseway lake is good. After this left carts to pick up on way back as unable to use on further portages. From Roseway Lake 2 portages (100m and 350m) to Grass Lake, 1 (400m) to Halfmoon Lake. 2 more portages (50m and 200m) after these found a old campsite along the river where set up camp for the night. Good weather most of the day.

Oct 14/12
Up early, last portage (150m (not on the tobeatic map) into Junction Lake, left canoes where current counties meet and walked 2 hours (just under 3km) to boundary rock. Had GPS coordinates from group that had rediscovered it 2 years before. Difficult walk with allot of hardhack, swamps, large rocks. Was a memorable moment when finally seeing the Rock appear though the trees after learning and researching the history behind it. Stayed about an hour or so, started a fire to warm up and had some lunch. Walked back to the canoes which seemed to be better walking. Canoed back to campsite by this time just getting dark. Weather colder, damp and drizzle most of the day.

Oct 15/12
Packed up camp and started return trip, paddled/portaged as far as Roseway Lake. Wind had picked up so decided to wait and see if winds would calm before going on the lake. Had lunch and nap as all were sore and tired from the hike the previous day. Winds not calming so decided to make camp for the night here, about an hour and a half before dark wind calmed a bit. Decided to paddle across from campsite on Roseway lake to try and find evidence of old saw mill. Couldn’t find were it was but did see old stumps that had been sawn, couldn’t even see where old road was suppose to be, returned to camp as getting dark. Weather windly, rain at times, mainly sunny with clouds.

Oct 16/12
Packed up camp, found canoe carts again. Paddled Roseway lake, portaged gear into mink lake, ran canoes down the river, hazardous tree across river that almost caused a problem, had to lift boats over this section then ran rest of the river into mink lake. Paddled to keatings campsite on mink lake, stayed their under an hour then paddled back to the 800m portage from mink lake to silvery lake, used canoe carts again on this portage. Returned to vehicles. Weather rain all day at times heavy rains.

Click on top photo for a link to more story:

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SW Nova Scotia sea kayaking trail up-to-date

Thanks to the work of Pat Hudson (in the field and doing the footwork and writing) and Dan Earle (website coordination) we have developed the most comprehensive coverage of  sea kayak access points in southwest Nova Scotia. We have listed almost 100 sites with a photo of the site and a description of its features, including its GPS coordinates. Clicking on the map on the website connects to an interactive Google Map to give a general idea of location and concentration of access sites. Click on map above to see this feature. The list of sites is in the menus under the masthead of the site website.

Please pass this information on to your paddling friends.

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Profits of paddling from Badger Paddles

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Spring/Summer trips in planning stages

Sandra Phinney is looking for suggestions of places to go (and dates) for spring/summer/fall  day trips.

The only trips that are carved in stone are the women’s extended trips:
JULY 5-9, Bario + parts of 2 rivers beyond the Bario and SEPTEMBER 26-Oct 1  Birchdale.

Contact Sandra Phinney: Sandra Phinney <>

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Kayak festival being planned for Shelburne

There is a group of community members and staff that are planning a kayak festival in Shelburne this summer. They are looking for support and have asked that we let Southwest Paddlers know about this opportunity. They would welcome any assistance our members can give.

Please contact:

Sheila Bird
Population Health Promoter
Public Health – South West District Health Authority
Shelburne County




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SW Paddlers develops protected area list

As you may have heard, the province is attempting to protect 12% of all lands by 2015. Currently, they are looking for folks to participate in the “land review process.” You, or anyone you know, can do that by calling (902) 424-2117 or emailing and letting the government know you want to participate.

If you don’t want to be part of the land review process, but want to express an opinion, please do so. Simply send an email to that same address.

To know which parcels of land are up for protection, check out this map: As you’ll see, many of the suggested areas for protection are Irving owned, and properties that we hoped the government would buy back for Nova Scotians.

SW Paddlers has developed its list of preferences for protection by the Province as a part of its drive to place a least 12% of our lands in a highly protected status. This list is open to comment and additions by SW Paddlers post readers. Send additions or comments to Dan Earle,

114 Sable River: Dunraven Bog
170 Great Pubnico Lake: numerous islands and west shoreline
173 Tusket River: Flat Falls, Gridiron Falls
235 Tusket River, Cold Stream: Third, Kegeshook, Canoe lakes
347 Roseway River, two pieces E and W branches 361 Shelburne River
378 (Upper) Silver River: Carrying Rd lakes to Long Tusket Lake
381 Carleton River: Sloans, Raynards lakes
418 Sable River: Dunraven Bog
421 Indian Fields Provincial Park Reserve + 422 East Branch Tusket River
424 Roseway River: Bluffhill, Moose, Skudiak lakes
425 West Branch Jordan River Longview L to Lake John, Eight Mile Brook
426 West River/Inness Brook; Tobeatic buffer
427 Kejimkujik buffer
428 Napier River block;Tobeatic buffer
429 West River/Inness Brook; Tobeatic buffer
430 Little Tupper, Tobeatic, Little Tobeatic, Roseway; Tobeatic buffer
431 “The Boot” Halfmoon, Junction, Great Pine, Siskech, Little Tupper lakes
432 upper Sissiboo River:Sixth Lake to Lake Joli (W Br Bear river)
434 Tobeatic buffer 435 Little Tupper, Sand Lake, Shelburne River
455 (Lower) Silver (Barrio) River: Barrio Falls to N Kemptville
478 Stave Lakes
numerous coastal islands & headlands


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Birchdale 100th open house

Birchdale (a.k.a. Nova Nada) is 100 years old! Open House, August 22-28 to celebrate this milestone. All welcome to take a walk down memory lane, paddle, hike or simply put your feet up on the old veranda and relax. Some cabins available for a night. For information contact Sandra Phinney 902-648-0462 or Helen Matthews 902-740-3913

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Paddle events announced

These trips in from Sandra Phinney. Contact her at for more information or reservation.

July 14-18 … Woman’s wilderness full moon paddle trip. The Tobeatic/Sporting Lake Stream is not a suitable place to bring Kayaks because of two portages. Looking at one of two Ponhook Lakes or a system of lakes in Quinan. Will provide more information once this is decided. But please let Sandra know if you are remotely interested so she can send more details. If you need boats, she has extra canoes/paddles. Usually take care of own breakfasts and lunches and assign teams to prepare evening meals.

July 30 … annual South West Paddler’s Tusket River paddle from bridge in Quinan to Wilson Lake Bridge (open to anyone).  This is an easy run; around 4 hours; pack a lunch; lifejackets mandatory; a few “riffles”.  There is one short section of white water at the Grid Iron falls but there’s also an easy/open/short portage to avoid that for anyone who does not want to do the run.  This even is listed as part of Yarmouth’s 250 here

Sept. 21-25 … Birchdale Women’s Rendezvous.  Basically: cabins are assigned (there is hot water; toilet and shower but no electricity); pay a nominal fee per night; take turns making meals (again, breakfast and lunch on your own; people assigned one evening meal);  paddling can vary from a challenging run in white water to gentle paddling in the lakes and/or through stillwaters up into the Bario. Paddle as little or as much as you want. Although some women come for all four nights, you can also come for shoter period of time.

Please let Sandra know if you plan to go, especially if you want the same cabins you had last year. NOTE: Helen is planning a week-long “open house” in honour of Birchdale’s 100th anniversary. Will be more information later but she’s hoping lots of people will drop out to visit during the week.


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Paddle School instructors wanted

Canoe Kayak Nova Scotia has announced a call for instructors for the 2011 Paddle School. CKNS will accept resumes for interested instructors and the potential candidates will be forwarded to the Directors of Canoe and Kayak Instruction.

Director of Sea Kayak: Christopher Lockyer

Director of Canoe: Brian Anderson

Location: Paddle School will take place at Camp Avalon located in Birchtown, NS.  8051 Highway 103, Shelburn Country


Canoe Training – May 27th-29th, 2011 & June 10th-11th, 2011

Kayak Training – May 27th – 29th, 2011

Deadline for applications is April 27.

Resumes can be emailed to

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Cofan being rehabilitated

Here are some photos of the work that was done in November to stabilize Cofan. The stove has been removed and is presently being stored safely at the DNR McGowan Lake Depot.

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