March 24, 2012

Four Pinetree Line Stations, in Four Days?

To everyone who said "why don't you wait until after the spring camping trip before you plan the next one?!" - yeah, I know, that would make a lot of sense wouldn't it ;)


The word conjures memories of growing up in Montreal watching the local CBC evening news and weather.  Chibougamau had it's own mention because it was pretty damn far from everything, and presumably it's own climate!  I don't know much about Chibougamau, but it's a town of under 10,000 people, it has some serious mining and nearby I would expect lumber.  However, it's pretty far north, so I expect the trees are scrawny and thinning out.  I now know it also had an RCAF Pinetree Line Station!  Coupled with the awesome name (I love saying Chibougamau!) I have a reason to visit!

There are not a lot of choices when it comes to roads that far north, so the shortest route takes me from Ottawa, North toward Val D'Or, then hooks NE to Chibougamau.  But wait, that takes me past Senneterre!

Senneterre is also on my list of sunny Quebec destination spots, as it also had an RCAF Station, a major one in the grand scheme of things.  Senneterre, for a while, was the back-up site to North Bay, which was the command and control headquarters for defending against those pesky Soviet bombers.  It was active until the 80s.

North East to Chibougamau, then do I take the route back?  Hell no!  From Chibougamau I'd go South East to Mont Apica, another Pintree Line station set high in the Quebec hills.

From there, the route takes me through Quebec City, Montreal, and on to Ottawa... but there's St Sylvestre along the way - another Pinetree Line station!  It also makes a convenient stop in the middle to take a break.

View Larger Map

That's about 1900 Km, or 28hrs of driving.  Can the Iltis take it?  Can I?  I'm really not sure.  The shakedown will be this spring's trip to Parent QC and Casey QC.  The northernmost roads are heavy with logging trucks and major transport trucks; I need to make sure the Iltis can keep up and not slow traffic down or I'll become a momentary obstacle, and then a speed bump.

I can get the Iltis to 80km/h, at 100km/h she's screaming, and I haven't been able to do more than 110 km/h since I changed the plugs, wires, etc.. that's probably best!

No idea.  Let's get Parent and Casey under my best first, then we'll see.

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