Trip Reports

June 1986 Newsletter Article

Cows and Canoeing

Mark S. has been digitizing the club archives including newsletters starting in 1978. Thank you Mark!

Below is an amusing example of an article from 1986.


More Food For Thought

A couple of years ago I published a warning in this journal on the subject of the herd of plastic-eating cows which hang around on the Petite Nation at the put-in at the bottomof the first canyon. On that particular occasion they had removed and eaten the foam padding from a yoke. Those were the pre-Liberal days in Ontario and unfortunately it did not occur tome to print my warning in both official languages. Consequently one of our francophone members has now run afoul of this same herd. Dominique tells me that on one occasion in the spring this year she had her front flotation nibbled. She can show you the teeth marks if you ask her. So in an attempt to extend my previous warning to include all club members I would like to say "PRENEZ GARDE LES VACHES: ELLES MANGENT PLASTIQUE".


In fact one of the more interesting if lesser known features of the Quebec canoe routes seems to me to be the apparent variety of plastic-eating beasties which inhabit the banks (the river banks that is). After a long day on the Riviere du Sourd this spring we returned to the put-in only to find our car would not start. The engine turned over ok, but there was not the slightest suggestion of firing from the plugs. I made a mental note to cancelmy CAA membership, since the car only ever breaks down at least 20km from the nearest phone, and opened the hood. The problem was immediately obvious — the high tension lead which used to connect the condenser to the distributor had been eaten through and was hanging in two pieces. Whatever the culprit was (and I am discounting cows this time (a) because no-one keeps cows in the Quebec bush and (b) a cow could not possibly have climbed up inside the engine compartment), it had also eaten the block heater leads, although whether these had been an hors d'oeuvre or desert was not clear. Fortunately, a piece of wire and some canoe tape (of course!) enabled us to get home on that occasion.

I am going to suggest at the next general meeting that in order to avoid repeat performances the club officially adopt a similar policy to that used to separate bears from food-packs. The motion will probably be something like "On all trips in Quebec the tripleaders will ensure that all unattended cars and canoes are left at least 16' off the ground,
and well away from any trees".

Dave I.