Muskoka River, ON - Malka Rozencwajg | Great Lakes Guide
  • Watermark
    Muskoka River, ON - Malka Rozencwajg

Amid teendom I trekked one early summer along with a consortium of male youth— one or two still eager to trip-up a female trekker embarking upon an initial out from the metropolis jungle exploration via— off the beaten track terra traversed via a group comprised of entirely urban dwellers. Several adults having outward bound terrain traversing experience led our party of 12 to 14yrs excursors. All in attendance including team leaders were not over 30yrs. Our trek ensued within the Muskokas through Group of 7 canvas backdrop terrain where our troupe further witnessed effects made via receding glaciers of the ice age however not long before our expedition during spring as winter's ice melted our troupe partook in a fave local exercise involving dipping large plastic garbage bags riddled with piercings to serve as drains in icy finger singeing swift moving north country streams abounding for a short time during spring's thaw with droves of smelt. How we gleaned although admittedly a portion of our bounty flowed back into the swollen waters surging in spots past the natural shoreline— as did a couple of overenthusiastic fishermen attemptees— Fortunately only the smelt ended swept beyond retrieval! Afterwards participants were taught how to prepare their booty for frying. It served as an interesting lesson in anatomy as well— definitely not the time to insist upon lady-alike over cultivations!

I was among an entourage of trekkers at the woodlands camp to encounter white water coursing through a water system within the Muskokas entailing 2 portages along with an overnight stay offering a campfire breakfast. Afterwards our group routed to a nearby junction point where civilization awaited our shivering troupe via smiling individuals bearing blankets and automobiles to bring the troupe back to the camp warmed via blaring car heaters following excursing through terrain unblemished via man-made cultivation however as if reminders we found remains of past campfire pits dug past the brush some distance of the shore.

As our canoes incrementally surged through some members of our line of wayfarers avidly sang and banged-out rhythms upon metal cups hung from loops of our voyageur knapsacks via travellers cutlery to both enhance our collectives rowing and to detract from the weight above our heads while portaging through terra. Some sortie members rang-out tunes of the love bead era. Popular among some older boys as was air-guitar. We pitched tents upon less brambly sections amidst predominantly inhospitable terrain aback of the bank. Our troupe received caution to keep aback of the edge of the dense pristine forest although I skimmed an area inside to view the seldom glimpsed beauty of a small cluster of remains of rare boreal orchid. At intervals some boys advised seasoned deep woods traversers via hollering and assorted noise-making actions kept bears lurking in the wood aback exuberantly vocalized and vigorously shook tins containing small rocks. It worked— Our troupe encountered not one throughout our trek— nor unfortunately much of other wildlife upon our away from the beaten track exploration albeit our collective viewed remains of porcupine quills in addition to deposits of fish scales at the shoreline along with one instance of catching one solo beaver at the edge of the deep forest in the act of chiselling a tree trunk undaunted albeit the presence of our troupe. Then further along the river in a less-brambly section our sortie leaders pulled our troupe in to give all wrists a rest from oaring and to engage us in an open air cooking lesson along with a lesson regarding tent-pitching technique amongst adversarial terrain.

Via the employ of newly gleaned oaring manoeuvres through the ever swifter water.. attempting a waltz through choppy water our collective veering among increasingly tugging scattered whirlpools every canoe attempted to avert via vigorous gesticulating of oar tips: Good thing water levels primarily remained not above our heads through such thrashing sections of wild-water as a couple of new canoeist inductees capsized! Viewing all while remaining uncapsized through rugged waters.. still dry at the bow of my 3 team member canoe.. at times needing to stay the vessel I incessantly applied figure-eights to stay the canoe! Periodically edges of craggy boulders white waves lashed against jutted-up from the face of the water's surface. Fortunately our canoes managed avoiding via oaring manoeuvres amidst increasingly turbulent rushing waters traversing one river system via portages into another swifter waterway with then a-swirl hissing white peaks breaking the surface— Eventually our sortie manoeuvred downward through a cascading shelf of rapids drawing our line of canoes in a manner leaving no possibility of turning back—

We veered our procession of canoes through this staircase of whitewater into a still corridor— to enter a dense pristine forest-surrounded lake. Fortunately all partakers remained intact! By then our envoy of voyageurs withdrew all oars not needing to use them as we glided via a smooth neck of water drawn via some subtle current to delicately flow our procession into that lake circumfrenced by densely-treed remote forest dotted above via small puffs of white cotton ball clouds amid sharp blue sky—

Our group of seasoned concrete enviro inhabitants after a cascading descent into the smooth-surfaced corridor of water— a grande finale as if our reward slid though that serene rivulet flanked via steep rock-faced cliffs sprawling high toward plateaus upon either side too high to see beyond their crests: Our sortie glided too brief of a period of exhilaration through the serene neck of water preceding entry into the expanse of the less-traversed via the general populace lake remaining quieted— clearly in collective awe—

Muskoka River, ON

Port Sydney, ON


Contributed By
Malka Rozencwajg

Collected By
Jessica Gordon

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