24-Feb-2001 -- I bought my GPS unit and within hours wanted to try and bag a Confluence
point. Leaving at about 3:00 pm, my wife Kate and I would have only about 2.75
hours before sunset, at which point we didn't want to be wandering around in unknown
bush. We drove down Highway 416 watching the Etrex Summit's compass feature.
The plan was to get in the general vacinity of Smith's Falls, and see which of the roads
on the Ontario map was closest to the site. Of course, my Topo map had the confluence
point right at the corner so, seeing small roads anywhere other than North East of the
point was not possible.
We found county road 23 which was not on the provincial map but we guessed
might offer us a quicker way from county road 6 across to highway 15. Along the way
we monitored our direction and noticed we got closer and closer to the target point. As
we went by the closest area - a couple of km away, we found a cross road that seemed
to further head in the right direction. We zipped up that road, and found it ended at
about 1.5 km away from the confluence point, in an area surrounded with no trespassing
signs. I approached the very rough little house to ask the owners if we could ski across
their back field to hunt confluence points (how was I going to explain this?). Unfortunately
(luckily?) there was no answer. (I pictured a heavily armed hermit behind the door
breathing heavily as I knocked.)
We decided to see if there was another approach, so drove back out to 23 and found
another road a km or less down the road. This one wound it's way around behind to
the north of the point, and we found ourselves only about 1.2km away, with a
snowmobile trail leading in the right direction. That trail soon ended but a swamp lay
in front of us. The swamp was quite attractive on this sunny -8°C day, and we skied
across. 700m away we got to heavy brush at the edge of the swamp. Bushwacking our
way through we reached a point where we thought another 5 minutes and we'd best
turn around to avoid the dark. We found a new snowmobile trail heading in the right
direction and took it. Kate had unfortunately broken a ski-pole at this point, so we
swapped poles and we went forward. We stopped when we saw that we were about
100m away from the point, and heavy brush lay ahead. We took our pictures and
headed back, arriving at the car as it got rather dim. We probably had another 15 minutes
before it was uncomfortably dark, so perhaps we could have persevered, but 100m is
pretty close anyway.
Coordinator's Note: This visit is listed as incomplete because the position shown on the GPS(44° 59.917'N 76° 00.09'W) is 194 meters from the confluence.