May
 

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Photo: 32-lb lake trout, Lake Temagami, 2002

May 29, 2002

32 lb. lake trout caught on Lake Temagami 

After a 25-minute struggle, Chris Martin (in photo) of Severnbridge, Ontario, landed this 31.6-pound, 42-inch-long lake trout at the mouth of Ferguson Bay. This rare trophy was hooked with a Rapala Magnum Blue on a 14-pound-test line at 7:45 p.m. on May 18.

Photo: Calvin Martin

 

May 22, 2002

Ontario has weakest parks law in Canada 

Ontario's parks and protected areas have the weakest protection of any jurisdiction in Canada, says an audit of parks legislation. "Ontario's laws are so weak that a park can be eliminated at the whim of cabinet," says Evan Ferrari of Wildlands League.

The report, Wild by Law, by Professor David Boyd of the University of Victoria gave Ontario 10 out of a possible 100 points for its efforts to protect its parks in law. The next lowest score was Alberta with 20. The federal government and Nova Scotia had the highest scores of 70 each.

The shaky integrity of Ontario's parks is particularly poignant in Temagami where Lady Evelyn-Smoothwater Wilderness Park is bisected by a road. Bob Lake Conservation Reserve will have a logging road cross it this year (see logging). And Chiniguchi Park contains mining lands.

"If we had a parks act with teeth we wouldn't have to fight all these little battles," says Ferrari.

   SUMMARY:     Wildlands League backgrounder

   FULL REPORT:   Wild by Law: A Report Card

May 17, 2002

Temagami slide show with Hap Wilson

Hap Wilson will be presenting a slide show on the Temagami wilderness experience and threats to it. 

Date: May 30, 7:30 p.m.

Location: Koffler Institute, 569 Spadina Ave., Toronto

Cost: $5.00

For reservations or info contact Ann: 416-599-0152 or ann@earthroots.org

May 16, 2002

Alex Paul elected chief

Alex Paul was elected chief of the Temagami First Nation yesterday. On Monday the Federal Court of Canada dismissed a request by the previous chief Raymond Katt for an injunction to stop the election.

  PREVIOUS STORIES:  Bear Island removes chief  

                                 Former chief taking First Nation to court

May 14, 2002

New species of old growth found,

will be logged

For the first time, old-growth black spruce and jack pine have been found in Temagami. Following an examination of MNR data by Ottertooth.com, the old growth was identified, but is in a controversial area to be logged this fall.

Until now, only old-growth red and white pine have been found in Temagami. However, a new report from MNR has made it possible to identify other species. The area to be logged, between Sharp Rock Inlet, Diamond Lake and Obabika Lake, is 59 per cent old-growth black spruce and jack pine.

Environmentalists and tourist operators oppose logging these stands in the core of Temagami. “This is ripping the heart out of the Temagami wilderness and there should be no logging there,” says Hap Wilson of Eskakwa Wilderness Outfitters. FULL STORY

May 13, 2002

Dispatch from Temagami Tim

at the Hub of Lake Temagami

The lake level is near the top of the summer range — 293.0 metres above sea level — not out of the ordinary for this time of year.

The final pieces of ice left the lake on Monday. There are still a few small patches of snow in protected areas in the bush. 

Happy spring!

— Tim Gooderham

May 10, 2002

A campsite problem down the toilet

Temagami Outfitting has a solution to some lumpy problems found on campsites: the PETT, short for Portable Environmental Toilet. This is the same system used by paddlers in many national parks and protected areas of the United States .

Not only is it a small portable toilet, says Ted Krofchak of Temagami Outfitting, but it contains a non-toxic absorbent that promotes decay, makes leaks almost a non-issue and puts a damper on odors. Guided trips from Temagami Outfitting will carry the system, and it will be available to outfitted clients and retail customers in the store.

“We have been working very hard over the past few years to leave as little trace as possible,” says Ted Krofchak, “and, as you can imagine with large groups of inexperienced trippers, the need for this system is even more acute.”

May 9, 2002

Former chief taking First Nation to court

Former Temagami First Nation (TFN) chief Raymond Katt is challenging his removal in federal court on May 13 in Toronto. On February 15, Raymond Katt was ousted as chief at a full assembly. Nominations for his replacement are in and a new election is scheduled for May 15 on Bear Island, the same day as the court hearing.

  PREVIOUS STORIES  Bear Island removes chief

May 7, 2002

Iceout north to Sealrock

The ice is out on the North Arm of Lake Temagami as far north as Sealrock Point, according to Glen Toogood, a resident of Garden Island. On Saturday, he watched two boats stubbornly spend most of the day breaking ice up to Rabbitnose Island.

May 6, 2002

Ontario government workers back at work

The 54-day Ontario Public Service Employees Union strike is over and workers are back on the job. Parks will open, conservation officers will be back on patrol and firefighters will prepare for fire season.

May 5, 2002

Iceout on southern Lake Temagami

Temagami Tim reports the southern half of Lake Temagami is ice free, but there is still ice north of Garden Island on the North Arm.

May 4, 2002

Iceout on Obabika Lake

Alex Mathias reports that the ice went out on the lake today with a southwest wind.  

May 4, 2002

MNR gives us the rest of the old growth, 

but no protection

MNR released — during the strike too — a draft of Old Growth Forest Definitions for Ontario. Until now, old growth for MNR, or to the minions who believe that the ministry's warehouses full of policies and procedures are divine gifts to humanity, was old-growth red pine or old-growth white pine. Nothing more. 

Naturalists, scientists, environmentalists and the forest industry — though the browns call it overmature forest — have long known otherwise. Most types of forests have the potential to reach an old-growth state, as the report makes clear. 

The entire old-growth issue was born in Temagami in 1988 out of the Temagami Wilderness Society's (TWS) Tall Pines Project and the work by its research director Dr. Peter Quinby. Until then, Canadian old growth was only recognized to exist in the temperate rainforest of the West Coast.  

Public pressure eventually led the Ontario government to protect from logging the Wakimika Triangle old-growth stand at the north end of Obabika Lake. Preservation is anathema to those who believe that the natural world is there to be improved by the hand of civilization, or better yet, industry. Temagami became a black word at MNR and in the forest industry, the T-word. 

Ontario created the Old Growth Forests Policy Advisory Committee in 1992, chaired by former TWS board member Brennain Lloyd, to create an old-growth policy. The Environmental Assessment Board, influenced by the Committee, added old-growth conservation to its legally binding orders on MNR in 1994. Chalk a big one up for the greens. 

Eight years after being required by law, we've got the definitions — and the buzz of chainsaws ripping into old-growth forest. Where's the protection?

   DOCUMENT: Old Growth Forest Definitions (PDF file)

May 3, 2002

Ice watch

The ice is still hanging in on Lake Temagami. "Tomorrow or Sunday for sure," says Fearless Forecaster Tim Gooderham.

Photo: clearcut near Rabbit Lake, Temagami, 2001

Cut over in 2001 near Rabbit Lake.

Photo: David Savelli

May 2, 2002

Clear-cut prohibition is a myth

There is a myth floating around that clear-cutting is no longer practiced in MNR's Temagami forest management unit. 

"There was never at any time said or written that there will be no clear-cuts in Temagami," says Rudy Ptok, chair of the Local Citizens Committee, which acts as a liaison between MNR and local groups on forestry plans. "They are legal, and more legal now. You can expect to see even more clear-cuts in Temagami. I am not saying I agree with it, but that is what is happening." 

May 2, 2002

Temagami Outfitting's Operation Cleanup Weekend

Temagami Outfitting (formerly Lady Evelyn Outfitting) will hold its fourth annual Operation Cleanup Weekend on May 24-26. Participants help clean campsites and portages within a short reach of the town of Temagami.

"We expect to get another great crowd this year," says Ted Krofchak of Temagami Outfitting. "Canoeists are incredibly supportive of Temagami." Complete canoe rental with all required equipment is included. Prizes will be awarded for the most "interesting collections coming back."

Reservations required. For details email Ted at canoe@icanoe.ca

 

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