02-Aug-2005 -- Needing a short walk, Tom and I decided to visit this confluence because it was there, and there had been no previous visit under summer conditions. A look at the site using Google Earth revealed varying shades of green, which we could not interpret at the time, at the site. It also showed the nearest roads, complete with names. We tried the approach used by Paul Makepeace in winter from Pinery Road, but soon gave up because of the swamp, deer flies, mosquitoes.....
A few hundred metres to the east, the road appeared to rise a little, and we left the car at N45deg 00.715min, W75deg 59.894min. This is the start of an easy trail, going roughly south. At N45deg 00.626min, W75deg 59.796min, we took a right onto a lesser trail. This led us to within about 300m of the confluence and at N45deg 00.132min, W76deg 00.047min we headed off into quite dense, poor quality, coniferous forest. Overall, we saw little wildlife. I was comfortable with this, since I have little experience with Canada's wilder inhabitants and there were few options available in the dense growth. Thoughts of the consequences of a fire in the dry undergrowth were quickly dealt with by suppression. Due to the noise we made breaking off brittle lower branches and keeping up a continuous chatter, any wildlife around would, we hoped, have made its excuses and left long before we approached, excepting bugs, of course, which were evidently attracted by our disturbance. We did, however, see deer tracks and droppings, and also squirrels, blue jays and partridges.
Finding the exact confluence proved fruitless, as the GPS was behaving as GPSs are wont to do under trees. It acted like a will-of-the- wisp, continuously leading us 10m one way, and then 15m in another until we had completed several circles. (The mean accuracy was about13m). The trees and shrubs were largely featureless, and as we had neglected to bring Paul's photos with us, we could not recognize anything. In the end, we deemed a tree, broken off at about 0.5m above ground as our confluence, and photographed the GPS on it. We guessed it to be some 32m from where the GPS thought the true confluence lay at that moment. We also photographed the GPS with a deer hoof print at a point probably slightly closer to the true confluence. (The time shown on the GPS is British Summer time- 5 hours ahead of local time).
Retracing our steps to the trail was impossible for city folk like us, so we blazed a new tail, tripping over an old fence, put there for the very purpose no doubt, and finding a pile of stones at a point a little south of where we had left the trail. One could only speculate about their origin- perhaps some desperate soul had tried to clear some of the poor ground for cultivation at some time in the distant past.
It took less than 30 minutes to return to the road. We were happy with our modest success, and felt very respectful of the old timers who had ventured into near virgin Canada without the use of GPS, and all the other gear we can just buy today.
Lessons learnt: Wear long trousers, use bug deterrent, and don't trust the GPS too much under trees