March 9, 2015

Quad Ride at Chip North on Powell Lake

Logging areas are usually named after geographic locations. One major logging area on Powell Lake is in and around Chippewa Bay.

Access is available at three locations, the main Chippewa Bay dock, Chippewa (Chip) South on the lower west side of the lake, and Chip North up past First Narrows, also on the west side of the lake.

We used the barge to take our first quad ride at Chip North. Logging is done for now, so we didn't have to check in with Western Forest Products.

We went on a Sunday when access is open for recreational users. But it's always safer to check if you are in doubt.

Our original destination was Clover dock on Goat Island, but Road Cruise was tied up to the dock.

That meant road building was in progress, and where there's road building, there's often dynamite. Not a good combination with quads. Time for plan two.

Our second choice was Olsen's Landing, but as we started in that direction we saw Chip North right across the lake. We've wanted to give it a try, so decided this was a good time.

Even though logging ended several years ago, the barge ramp is in excellent condition. We pulled strait in and it was almost level to drive our quads off.

The dock, however, has a sunken spot. Since we were sure no one else would be using the ramp, we left our barge there. That way we didn't have to wade our way to shore.

The morning fog started dissipating, turning into a nice day for riding. 

Since we were the first through after winter storms, trees blocked the road. Fortunately, they were small enough to remove with our chainsaw.

We took the lower road to the right, thinking it would go over the ridge, but it ended abruptly.

We went back to the junction, but the steep sided road reminded me I'm not completely "cured" of my fear of heights.

I stayed behind while Wayne proceeded up the road to the left. He found a slash with glacial erratic boulders that seemed poised to roll down and crush a float cabin. Then he went over the crest.

After the slash grows and hides the steep drop-offs I'll see what's on the other side.

In the meantime, I enjoyed exploring on foot and capturing the scenery with my camera. -- Margy

March 2, 2015

Goat Lake Main to Windsor Lake

Crisp winter days often bring crystal blue skies. They also make great days to get out on the quad and take a ride. One easy destination follows Goat Lake Main along the chain of lakes that make up the Powell River Forest Canoe Route.

Head south of Powell River on Highway 101. A left turn at Dixon Road takes you off the pavement and onto Goat Lake Main. This main is a busy logging road on weekdays, but is safe to travel on weekends and holidays. Several logging companies use this major backcountry artery, so keep eyes and ears open!

There are several turnouts to park and offload along the way. Just be careful at corners. Many of the loads are long and swing wide.

This easy ride takes you along the west shores of Nanton, Dodd, and Windsor Lakes. You can reach all three lakes easily. Nanton and Dodd both have forest campsites accessible by car or truck. Windsor can be reached from the main, but has no official campsite except at the Canoe Route portage.

Portage dock at the head of Windsor Lake.
One thing we like to do while quadding is stop and hike farther into the bush. You don't have to go far to find some spectacular places.  We stopped between Dodd and Windsor Lakes and followed the portage trail to the head Windsor.

It's a little hike, but the vistas are huge. Be sure to look both up and down. Some of the most beautiful things are right there at your feet. This particular location can be accessed on weekends by truck, or even a car if care is taken while driving on the logging roads.

You don't have to wait until summer to enjoy this ride. A sunny winter day, even a cloudy or foggy one, brings beautiful things to see. 

Want to read more about my recovery and quadding in this beautiful country? Go to and take a look at Up the Main.

It's available in print and Kindle formats from  Or check with your e-book vendor for other formats. -- Margy