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French River


phatbassturd
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3 hours ago, woodenboater said:

hey Cliff, is the Esso station by the Pickerel River still open ? Haven't been up that way since last summer.

I don't remember an ESSO station near the Pickerel River, there is the one at the Magnetawan with the Tim's, that one is open.

3 hours ago, phatbassturd said:

Thanks for all the insight here folks!! 

Miss seeing some of the old names on the board from the early 2000s!!

We are traveling with friends who are at the french river lodge yearly, so we will follow them in, but will let em know it may be a bit of an annoyance getting in there!!

Tell ya im sure nervous about the river and rocks, so much so i may just hang out in the bay for the 3 days i have the boat... im sure theres fish in oxbay worth chasing, just out front of the lodge? 

I haven't fished that area for over 40 years but IF I remember correctly there is a shoal out in the middle of Hartley Bay that you can't see until you hit it, once past that if you stay in the middle of the river you are pretty safe. Just ask around or go slow you'll be fine.

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3 hours ago, woodenboater said:

sorry, key river. think it changed hands over the years. wonder if 11 to 17 to Verner is good way to get to the west  arm if 69 is a gong show ?

Yes the one at Key river is still open but his price is higher than anywhere else. 69/400 isn't bad at all, Hartley Bay Rd. is a mess though. I wouldn't do the Hwy. 11 thing, it's a lot more km and going through North Bay would slow you down.

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1 hour ago, Big Cliff said:

Yes the one at Key river is still open but his price is higher than anywhere else. 69/400 isn't bad at all, Hartley Bay Rd. is a mess though. I wouldn't do the Hwy. 11 thing, it's a lot more km and going through North Bay would slow you down.

thanks Cliff. totally agree about driving through North Bay, hate it.

I honestly don't know if I'll be heading up there this year, which sucks cuz it's been a few years since I've been up on the West Arm. Think it was the year Kevin passed, but before Leslie sold Lakair, which I miss sooo much.

This pandemic sucks

Edited by woodenboater
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Just a bit of an update: The ESSO at Key River is now an Econo gas station and his price is about $0.10/L more than anywhere else.

The bridge on Hartley Bay Rd. Is being widened, ditches are being cleaned out, and they are blasting rock in several areas. Expect delays! 

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Yup, if you want to fuel up your best bet is to stop either at wolf energy near go home lake, shawnaga First Nation or the esso at Britt 

don’t wait to get gas in key or at the french it’s way higher price.

 

FYI you can access the French river trading post from either side of the highway. There is a lane cut out for it. I drove past on my way to Timmins last week and took a look.

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Just an FWI but I'm currently up on the West Arm of Nipissing and the water level is about a foot lower than normal so I'm assuming the French will also be low which could make safe boating a bit more tricky.

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Yep, water is quite low... believe someone said its at an all time low, the big rock on the way to the flat rapids is about 8ft out of the water... apparently there wasnt enough run off to open the dams... first time so i dont know really, but i guess its 14ft lower than normal this time of year?

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We are heading home tomorrow, nearly skunked... 1 10" eye, few perch, buncha smallies, some big cats and a sucker is all we've got so far- friends managed a 24" eye the first day, and only 3 total since sunday... the peace and quiet and serenity is well worth the price of admission tho!!

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50 minutes ago, phatbassturd said:

We are heading home tomorrow, nearly skunked... 1 10" eye, few perch, buncha smallies, some big cats and a sucker is all we've got so far- friends managed a 24" eye the first day, and only 3 total since sunday... the peace and quiet and serenity is well worth the price of admission tho!!

Fishing has been really different this year even in the back lakes, bass are here but much deeper than normal for this time of the year, we would normally be pounding them with top water presentations, we've had to go deep to get any action. I am at 1236 Hartley Bay Rd. honk as you go by tomorrow (I'll probably be gone fishing 🙂 ) and safe trip home.

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2 hours ago, AKRISONER said:

Yup, if you want to fuel up your best bet is to stop either at wolf energy near go home lake, shawnaga First Nation or the esso at Britt 

don’t wait to get gas in key or at the french it’s way higher price.

 

FYI you can access the French river trading post from either side of the highway. There is a lane cut out for it. I drove past on my way to Timmins last week and took a look.

The ESSO at Magnetawan is not too bad for price plus they have a Tim's and washrooms.

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5 hours ago, Big Cliff said:

Fishing has been really different this year even in the back lakes, bass are here but much deeper than normal for this time of the year, we would normally be pounding them with top water presentations, we've had to go deep to get any action. I am at 1236 Hartley Bay Rd. honk as you go by tomorrow (I'll probably be gone fishing 🙂 ) and safe trip home.

Way too much unstable weather. The temperature swings have been insane. 

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8 hours ago, phatbassturd said:

We are heading home tomorrow, nearly skunked... 1 10" eye, few perch, buncha smallies, some big cats and a sucker is all we've got so far- friends managed a 24" eye the first day, and only 3 total since sunday... the peace and quiet and serenity is well worth the price of admission tho!!

If you still have a chance, try trolling deep for eyes. Guys were up there last week and did ok downrigging eyes. Ask at the lodge.

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  • 5 weeks later...

so drove up 69 yesterday and yikes. two major slowdowns. manned traffic control just below Shawanaga. long line but they let lots of cars through before switching direction. the other one was at Naiscoot, and that was way worse. timed traffic lights by the bridge and it was brutal. guessing backup was well over a km+ long. I should have taken the 529 to bypass the mess. above that was smooth sailing. so good I didn't even notice crossing over the french haha. trading post was busy.

Edited by woodenboater
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2 hours ago, woodenboater said:

so drove up 69 yesterday and yikes. two major slowdowns. manned traffic control just below Shawanaga. long line but they let lots of cars through before switching direction. the other one was at Naiscoot, and that was way worse. timed traffic lights by the bridge and it was brutal. guessing backup was well over a km+ long. I should have taken the 529 to bypass the mess. above that was smooth sailing. so good I didn't even notice crossing over the french haha. trading post was busy.

Sounds like an interesting trip if we are able to make it up.   We’re scheduled to head up the Saturday of Labor Day week-end.  Sounds like I’ll drive up through the night to avoid a lot of the traffic - which we have done before.  

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6 hours ago, Rich Clemens said:

Sounds like an interesting trip if we are able to make it up.   We’re scheduled to head up the Saturday of Labor Day week-end.  Sounds like I’ll drive up through the night to avoid a lot of the traffic - which we have done before.  

man I hope it's done before that lol but this is Ontario where summer is road work season !

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  • 2 weeks later...
32 minutes ago, Big Cliff said:

Just drove up from Lindsay to French River left Lindsay 8: 00 am 3.5 hrs no problems at all, delay at Naiscoot less than 5 minutes. 

hope they figured out how to move traffic then. wonder if friday will see a return to lurching cars ? haha

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  • 2 weeks later...

Drove up yesterday (thursday) hit Naiscoot about 1 pm , North bound line up about 1/2 km, South bound line up over 5 km. I  hate to think what it would be on a Friday afternoon, you might be better to go up 11 and cut across 522 if you are making the trip at anything other than off hours.

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