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St. Regis Canoe Area - 9/29 - 10/1

Jan 17, 2023
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My wife and I along with my brother and his wife spent a couple nights on St. Regis Pond over the weekend. We pushed off from the put in at Little Clear Pond around 10:30 Friday morning and were on St. Regis right around noon. Paddled around for an hour or so looking at sites. Ended up at a really nice site on the north shore with a big rock outcropping at the landing. Had some lunch and then set up camp.
Got settled in and watched a really nice sunset while the loons called.
I didn't sleep well the first night and was up before sunrise. Heard a pair of barred owls to the west while the fire crackled.
Eventually I woke everyone else up, had breakfast and got on our way. Our plan was to paddle through the rest of the 6 carries route to Upper St. Regis Lake, dock at the trail head in Spring Bay and hike up St. Regis Mountain. We made it to the top around noon if I recall correctly. Had some lunch while taking in the fantastic view, climbed the fire tower and then headed back. Made it back to camp around 4:30. Definitely worth the effort, we had a blast. Saw a bald eagle going through Little Long Pond and lots of Loons of course.
Had a hearty meal and sat around the fire for a while. We all slept like rocks that night. Up at 6am, packed up and on the water around 8:30. My brother and I carried the canoes across the St. Regis to Little Clear portage. Our wonderful wives carried the big packs first and then went back to get the small packs while we waited at the put in. We discussed going back to help with the packs but figured they could get them. Turns out we should've went back. On their way back to us they spotted a bull moose about 100 yards off the trail! Of course they didn't have their phones or cameras. We gave them a hard time about that.
It was a fantastic trip, couldn't have asked for more. We all wished we could stay for a few more days (or longer)!

Ben, thanks for the nice report and interesting pictures. What are the two makes of canoes you used?
My brother was in his Wenonah Minnesota II and I had my 1953 Old Town Otca, 18'. I restored it a few years ago. We paddled at a leisurely pace the whole time and traveled at about the same speed. The Minnesota II could've left us in the dust (wake?) if needed though.
Both families have 2 little girls each that we plan to start taking with us next year. I'm very seriously considering a Northstar Northwind 20 for the family trips. I managed getting the Otca on my shoulders, but at 90 lbs its not much fun over the portages.
Very nice, I'm going out there this weekend with the AMC club, yearly fall foliage trip. Sadly it's looking like some rain.

90lbs, eek. I bought a Souris River a few years back to help with the portage.
Sadly the AMC club trip this weekend is cancelled up there. Just to much rain. It's a yearly event and so sad we can't get together. I'm hoping to catch some foliage next weekend at Lake Taughkanic get together.
I took a look at the weather yesterday, probably best it was canceled. No chance for a reschedule this year?
Thanks for the report! I like the look of that campsite on St. Regis. Kudos to you for portaging your 90# wood canvas canoe! Mine is nearly 30 pounds lighter... and still too heavy, but then I'm probably significantly older than you!
An 18' canoe is certainly overkill for just my wife and I on a short trip, but it's all I have at the moment. A 16 footer would do the job and be easier to get around with. I'm working on a '37 Carleton Guide at the moment, also 18'. Guess I don't learn, but I couldn't pass it up.
I read your trip reports and admire your boats and willingness to haul them around. I'm 38 so we'll see how long I can hold out.
I took a look at the weather yesterday, probably best it was canceled. No chance for a reschedule this year?
Nope, campgrounds close in 2 weeks, some are travelling back south. They have been gathering for 30 years, think maybe a bit longer.
AMC NY/NJ paddle group.
Following up, I did manage to pick up a Northwind 20, 4 seater. It doesn't look promising to get on the water with it this year, but we'll see. The weight is fantastic, goes up to the shoulders very easy. Lots of room for kids and gear, can't wait.
Me too! Probably won't have that information until next year.
Excited to try it out.