Joined: February 25th, 2014, 1:22 pm

July 29th, 2015, 6:08 pm #11

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
I know this is probably going to steer the thread a little off topic but...

yet the majority of folks we see in Algonquin are women.

Do you find that, in the backcountry? I would say I find the opposite; I see lots of all-male groups, lots of mixed groups, and comparatively few (though certainly some) all-female groups, for an overall male majority... but I haven't been keeping careful track, this is just a vague impression... and there could be a sampling bias of one sort or another.

Certainly I've seen a lot of mildly but unmistakably surprised looks on people's faces when my girlfriend and I land at a portage and she's the one who gets the canoe up on her shoulders.
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Joined: October 21st, 2010, 1:42 pm

July 29th, 2015, 7:21 pm #12

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
If I think about it I have seen a larger percentage of men in the farther regions of the backcountry (e.g. Dickson)... but likely an even mix or perhaps even an edge to women in the not so far regions(e.g. Rock/Penn) ... but I always chalked that up to the hard core fishing groups that go deep into the interior are mostly men.

Sorry we are taking things a bit off topic .. but then again knowing what the mix is for men/women in the backcountry might be of use to you ...

Actually now that I think of it ... last August on Sec lake we had a party of 4 and I was the only guy !!
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Joined: July 30th, 2012, 5:01 am

July 29th, 2015, 8:40 pm #13

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
I don't understand why a female soloing SHOULD be any different than a male?!
I cannot believe the story about the drunk guys calling the solo girls name from across the lake? What kind of people are going on canoe trips these days? Those people obviously have some serious issues and should not be aloud in the interior of the park!!!

I solo about 95% of the time I am in the backcountry because my girlfriend is afraid to do it. She cant even sleep in camp grounds without having a panic attack. We stayed on the Kiosk campground last weekend and she woke me up at 4am because she swore she heard our neighbours quietly say the word 'bear'. I have yet to see a single female soloist for some reason and I have always wondered why..?

If you could portage that canoe from smoke to the portage store that tells me right off the bat you are more than capable. You can rent a swift solo canoe weighing as little as 22lbs!!

I think you should do a small solo trip.. start at Magnetawan and portage into Hambone or Ralph Bice or something similar for a couple of nights, after completing that you will have more confidence, then go farther and farther! Show all the guys who the boss is!
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Joined: September 20th, 2009, 1:00 am

July 30th, 2015, 5:06 am #14

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
Just a few years ago I was standing to the Canoe lake dock eating a ice cream when a women came paddling in alone. When she made it to the docks she pulled her gear out of the canoe, pulled the canoe up out of the water on to the dock, then picked up all her gear and walked by me looking like she's been doing it for years. I took my first solo trip the following year thanks to her. Cheers Tom
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Joined: August 4th, 2007, 12:00 am

July 30th, 2015, 12:04 pm #15

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
My very first solo was in Algonquin some 20 years ago. It led me to solo in further away places though I come back to Algonquin from time to time.

Having just finished chemo a few months ago I'm working up my endurance and will do an Algonquin solo again this fall( at this stage I'd like used and fewer portages!)Thinking of Opeongo Annies Bay and back down towards Booth. Been on Opeongo several times but the rest would be new.
I have a new 29 lb Colden WildFire. My main fear ( and its less in Algonquin) is falling and breaking an ankle and not being found. I've never been harassed on the trail. ( I have before the trip when people try to find out what that little boat is for. I tend not to talk to anyone at the launch so as not to attract attention). Canoers are friendly and helpful.. The rest.. I don't know of their intentions.

You can rent a much smaller and lighter canoe. You do not need the volume of a tandem. My solo tripping canoes are in the 14-15 foot range. Falling under a 30 lb canoe has happened and I can roll that off my shoulders before it slams me. The 65 lb Raven I have would squash me flat.

I use a blue barrel ( 30 liters) for food storage. Bears aren't as much an issue as pesky rodents. You might find something like the Ursack useful as you do not have to hang it up high.

A word of extreme caution...beware beware of going solo. Its addicting. I am on my way to Newfoundland with an 18 foot sea canoe on the car. Ferry day today.

You just never know where you will wind up.
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Joined: March 10th, 2015, 12:03 am

July 30th, 2015, 12:57 pm #16

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
As a middle age man who loves Algonquin Park and has spent 40 years exploring the park I can't think of one reason why you can't solo in the park or any where you want the only advice I have for you is start off with a small trip and build from there good luck and have a great summer

SpecShawn
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Joined: August 18th, 2014, 1:13 pm

July 30th, 2015, 1:37 pm #17

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
Hey Andrew,

I promise I'm not lying about the men calling me across the lake. I am certain they were being completely innocent about it. I bet they had just had a few drinks and thought, "we should invite that nice lady over for a drink, let's holler real loud."

Despite innocent intentions, it's scary when you're alone in your tent in the middle of nowhere. I listened very carefully for any hint that they were getting in canoes to paddle over. If they had, I would have hid in the woods with my pocket knife and paddle. Sounds silly, but they out numbered me and were large.

If you had met them on the trail, you may have thought "oof, these guys are kind of irritating" but you wouldn't have given it a second thought.

But!!! I agree with you, that story is no reason not to go solo! I think it's just a total fluke too but I don't think you can discount a woman for being a bit more concerned than a man.
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Joined: October 21st, 2010, 1:42 pm

July 30th, 2015, 2:47 pm #18

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
Take 1 group of young men, add in 2 parts booze = juvenile behavior ...

Totally legitimate to be afraid in those situations when you are alone ... that's why I was suggesting above to stay on a lake that's well travelled ... these guys would think twice yelling if there's a few other campsites within earshot and frequent paddlers ... yes it takes away a little bit from the backcountry experience but gives you a little peace of mind.

You could always fly a Maple Leafs flag ... nobody's gonna bother you then !!!
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Joined: August 31st, 2014, 11:44 pm

July 31st, 2015, 2:17 am #19

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
Just got back today from a quick trip to the park and was thrilled to see this post. As a solo female tripper, I love surprising people on the trail when they see me, alone, managing canoe and gear, all by myself. As many have already said, there is no reason a woman cannot do this. We just aren't conditioned to think it's possible. I would encourage a quick first trip with shorter portages and rent an ultra light solo canoe. The last canoe I rented was a pack canoe and I went right out and bought one. At 28 lbs I can do single carries with canoe and gear. I have never had anyone be disrespectful, in fact most men even offer to help me lift my canoe, especially at the dock when I need to load it on the car. I NEVER accept their kind offer, Instead preferring to enjoy their astonishment when I can pick it up all by myself. Glad to see other female solo trippers responding to this post. I have often wondered if I was one of the only ones but it seems there are more than I thought. Hopefully one day we'll outnumber the guys
Enjoy, Sister Soloist!

K
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Joined: August 19th, 2010, 4:11 pm

July 31st, 2015, 7:47 pm #20

Hello all!

I've enjoyed reading the boards, but I have a question to which I've not been able to find an answer. I'm hoping that you might help - with honesty.

Some background:
I am a middle-aged woman without a paddling partner. I am so very tired of being confined to campground camping and I'd like to venture out into the backcountry. I've been paddling for about 35 years so I have "some" experience. Most of my canoeing has been flatwater solo. Based on past experience, my ideal distance is 10-15km/day.

I've been camping for about as long as I have been canoeing - but only on car-based campgrounds. My usual preference is for quiet northern parks and walk-in sites.
I have most of my gear - save for that specific to backcountry and canoe (need dry-bags and food pack-hanging technique).
I have only portaged once - a 59-pound 17' canoe from Smoke Lk. back to the Portage Store. I used the tripod method to get it onto my shoulders.

My question is two-fold:
Can I, as a woman traveling solo, reasonably manage this trip (i.e. what is the likely harassment factor from other travelers, am I likely to be hassled)? Where would be a good place to start, to avoid problems with those lacking etiquette?
Is it insane to try and plan to do a first-time backcountry trip solo?

Any ideas and advice is most welcome!
Maybe one day gender will not make a difference.
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