Day 18: Canoe and Co. to Perkins Landing on Lake Memphremagog, Quebec (18.8 miles)

I left my pretty riverside perch wicked early, after enjoying a Grey Gables muffin and coffee.  I have adapted well to cooking in my tent vestibule and eating while protected from bugs and weather.  I would have appreciated the chance, though, to thank Frank and Rochelle again for their hospitality and for their dedication to the NFCT.  I had won my night of camping from many that they donated to NFCT’s silent auction. I particularly loved the small, clean real restroom behind their home.  And Rochelle’s small daughter brought me bananas and an apple.


The final miles of the Missisquoi were serene, although conditions were tougher on the North Branch, which leads to the town of Mansonville and ends this 74-mile upstream section.

PADDLER’S NOTE (and evidence of my navigational challenges):  A couple was fishing at the Mansonville takeout and I was so focused on not disturbing their fishing that I did not notice the two portage signs, which were also partially obscured by vegetation.  If you reach small rapids, you’ve gone too far.  By the timeI figured it out and returned, I had a lovely audience of tourists offering help and the fisherman still with his tackle and self on the wooden steps.  Oh well


Mansonville, where I lunched at the Owl’s Bread Boulangerie, is a pretty town founded in 1803 by Joseph Chandler and John Lewis. A round barn of Shaker construction, built in 1912, made an educational stop as I portaged through town.

A fluid and flexible schedule adds to the adventure of the trail…and so I ate my braised pork on milk bread with caramelized onion and apple sandwich with salad and fruit custard (wow!) and debated whether to go on.  The weather looked iffy but the nice manager checked and said I was good to go.  A portage, a paddle, a steep takeout where I used the official Diorio Access and met a friendly cyclist who tried hard to convince me to go back to Mansonville and walk from there.

PADDLER’S NOTE:  Chemin Peabody, which comprises most of the Grand Portage , is being resurfaced.

The barns of the Grand Portage add charm to a climb that takes you up about 670 feet to cross the Missisquoi/St. Francis divide into a new watershed. Going down was a breeze, and breezy, as I walked to Perkins Landing to find Sydney and Marji Aveson there to welcome me. They had already set up camp after taking a shuttle around the Grand Portage.

TOTAL MILES: 269.4 miles 

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