Skip, Kathryn and I met Matt at Hoss’ Corner Store in Long Lake at 9:30 and we proceeded to Lows Lake. We were paddling on Hitchins Pond by 10:30. We ended up at campsite #27 which had a nice view of Lows Lakes. We saw several loons including one that kept shaking its foot – we suspected monofilament line was wrapped around the foot.
We enjoyed a meal of tacos with dessert of peach shortcake. We played a little pitch and turned in for the evening. Wednesday morning we were paddling across a dead quiet lake by 7:30.
It was an hour paddle to the portage trail from Lows Lake to Oswegatchie. Skip and I single carried the canoes while Kathryn and Matt took their packs and tied on the extra canoe paddles and life jackets. It was .7 mile from Lows Lake to Deer Pond and 2.3mile from Deer Pond to campsite #4 at the Oswegatchie River. We would stop every 20-30 minutes for a rest and it took us about 3 hours to complete the portage. There was a hornet’s nest in the roots of the overturned tree at the top of the highest elevation point so we didn’t tarry long at that rest area.
I had estimated ~45 minutes to reach Camp Johnny/Site #11 – 2 and ½ hours later we stopped at Site #9 for lunch of wraps at 2:30 as we were pretty whipped. We counted over 40 beaver dams / dead falls that required getting out of the canoe, lifting and re-entry. By the time we reached High Falls we were hot and tired and only briefly paused for pictures and a quick splash below the falls.
There were lots of folks camping at the falls and sites below. We stopped at Site #22 to access the spring, tank up and refill all our water bottles. We camped across the stream and enjoyed Matt’s dinner of sweet and sour chicken with rice.
The next morning we launched for Wanakena arriving before noon. Matt and I portaged our canoes to Wanakena arriving around noon. Kathryn went to the General Store for a Gatorade and after dinner drinks. Kathryn took a sip and complained of a sinus headache. I took a drink and it triggered my atrial fibulation. I immediately took heart medication and paddled leisurely to the Pine Tree Restaurant where we had a late lunch. I laid out and relaxed, two hours later I was recovered, but the group had made the decision to plug on the trip. The owner of the Pine Tree Restaurant provided a ride back to our cars at Lows Lake and we returned home a day early. Since then I have researched triggers for Atrial Fibulation and found that in one study icy cold drinks triggered 12% of Atrial Fibulation events – a hard lesson to learn.
Additional pictures are at http://www.jimmuller.com/canoe-trips/lows-lake-to-cranberry/