Alex More Letter No. 2, re: Transportation

June 22, 1942

Mr. J.P. Caulfield                              Flin Flon, Manitoba
Mr. A. More                                     Flin Flon, Manitoba

Island Falls - Flin Flon, Summer Route
(Trip made June 19, 1942)

Dear Mr. Caulfield:

We left Island Falls at 8:30 A.M. and loaded into a wind-driven barge on Sandy Bay ten minutes later. Two men made the barge ready for travel by gassing up, checking oil, etc. Arrived at the south end of Sandy Bay to find three docks, all out of the water due to very low water, so we unloaded on the rocks and into a canoe and reloaded in a Fordson-drawn cart while two men took the barge out and anchored it in the bay.

We left Sandy Bay at 9:20 A.M. , just fifty minutes from the store at Island Falls, and portaged across to Muddy Lake. Arrived at Muddy Lake at 9:40 A.M. and started across Muddy Lake in two canoes. The docks on Muddy Lake are in very poor condition due to rot, but there is new timber at the docks to make repairs, which, I am told, will be done after decisions on the boat route are settled.

We left Muddy Lake at 10:30 on a gas-driven dinky which required two men on the front footboard to pour sand on the rail in order to get up a grade of approximately 10 per cent leaving Muddy Lake. The dinky runs well, though the brakes are poor. The track is fair (one broken rail).

Arrived at Barrier Lake, or Camp 6, at 10:45 A.M. and after loading, gassing, and checking out by phone, we left the dock at 11:10 A.M. The docks at Camp 6 are rotting, but the boathouse is in excellent condition.

The Barrier Lake boat, called the "Jubilee", has a steel hull and is powered by a 3-cylinder, 4-cycle Russell gasoline engine. The vibration of this 3-cylinder is terrible and I believe a 3-cylinder, 4-cycle engine cannot be anything but unbalanced. However, I like the steel hull. With the large engine removed and very little work done on the cabin, an abundance of freight and passenger space could be made available. The hull is very easy to keep in shape, which is a good item due to their always being in the middle of the run [??]. This boat makes 9½ miles per hour, by checks on one mile, two miles, four miles and total of nineteen miles in two hours, eight minutes.

Arrived at Camp 5 at 13:18. There is no boathouse. The dock is in fair condition.

On the portage from Barrier to Lake 2 there is another Fordson-drawn two-wheeled cart. The portage is good.

On Lake 1 there is a 22-foot canoe, with a 15 H.P. outboard motor. The dock is fair and the boathouse is in good shape.

We left the north end of Lake 2 at 13:55 and arrived at the south end at 14:15. There we transferred to a Ford-A truck. The dock is fair, but there is no shelter of any kind.

The portage is good to the north end of Lake 1. The dock at the north end of the lake is fair, but there is no shelter.

At the north end of Lake 1 we transferred to two canoes with 5 H.P. outboards, and left at 14:30, arriving at the south end at 14:40 in heavy rain - no shelter, everyone soaked. We transferred to another Ford-A truck and the passengers walked in the downpour to Camp 4 at the north end of Mari Lake. The dock at this end is rotting. The boathouse is good, but the water is too low to allow the boat to get in.

We left the north end of Mari Lake at 15:00 and arrived at the south end at 18:00, including one five minute stop to pick up a lineman.

The boat on Mari is a duplicate of the Barrier Lake boat. It has a steel hull and is in good shape, but is powered by a 4-cylinder Russell engine. This boat is slower by about one mile per hour than the Barrier Lake boat.


To refer to my previous report on this route, I should like to suggest these changes:

1. That there be an examination of the country between the Indian Village at Sandy Bay and Barrier Lake to check on the possibility of a summer road between these two points. This would eliminate the south end of Sandy Bay, which is also very shallow, and would give direct connection with the Barrier Lake boat if we barged the Island Falls truck across the north end of Sandy Bay.

2. That the possibility of a portage between Barrier and Mari Lakes be investigated.

3. That specifications of the two steel-hulled boats be sent to a manufacturer and recommendations secured on a modern marine engine and propeller that will drive these boats at 10 miles per hour, using, say, 65 percent of the motor's rated H.P.

If this plan proved possible, only the two steel-hulled boats would be required and one conveyance of the portages between Barrier and Mari. The Island Falls trucks could service the portage between Sandy and Barrier.

4. That derricks be used for unloading and loading freight. This would necessitate a hatch in each boat, which would be quite simple to arrange.

Very truly yours,

A. More