April 16, 2012

Preparing for the road trip to RCAF Station Parent and Casey

(UPDATE: This trip happened

To recap, I'm going camping with ~8-10 of my craziest friends in the near future, and here's where we're going, in excruciating detail for my next of kin.  All times are approximate, and I've put no times to events on Day 2 and Day 3 because other than getting home around dinner time, I have no schedule I need to keep!

Day 1 ~450 Km:
  • 09:00  Depart from Carp, ON
  • 09:45  meet the rest of the expedition at Tunney's Pasture, by the giant microwave dish.
  • 10:00  Pick up the downtownie, in the market
  • 10:15  Travel to Mont Laurier, QC; via the 105, 107 and 117
  • 12:30  Meet the Montrealer who's joining our merry band of lunatics there.
  • 13:00  Allowing time for the unexpected, depart from Mont-Laurier for Parent, QC
  • 16:00  Arrive at Parent, QC, make camp

View Larger Map

Day 2 ~55 Km:
  • Break camp
  • Explore the remnants of RCAF Station Parent
  • Travel from Parent to the Casey Air Strip
    (NB: The road is not mapped, I will be GPSing it and adding it to Google Maps upon my return)
  • Explore the remnants of the Cold-War-era air base near Casey, QC
  • Make camp!

View Parent, QC to Casey Air Strip in a larger map

Day 3 ~500 Km?

This is where it gets a little hazy.  By this time we've been in the middle of nowhere, in below freezing (at night) temperatures, for 2 sleeps.  Some of the expedition may have become disenfranchised with the trek's vision.  Some may be cold.  Some may be whiny. 
By the start of Day 3, if all goes according to plan, we will be waking up at the abandoned airstrip at Casey, QC.  If we haven't done enough exploring the day before, we can explore some more.  By noon, at the latest, we should be heading home.

I have a "Plan A" and a "Plan B". 

Plan A  ("The Safe Way" - Back the way we came ) ~500 Km
  • Casey, QC to Parent, QC
  • Parent, QC to Mont-Laurier QC (Wave goodbye to the Montrealer who would take the 117 back East)
  • Mont-Laurier to Ottawa, drop off the downtownie and whoever else.

If by day 3 we've had an incredible time, and we all feel invincible, we get to take the "new" way back, the road less traveled.
Plan B  (AKA The Yippe-Kay-Yay Way - BOOYAH!) ~480 Km
  • Head along the forrestry roads from Casey, QC to "Chemain de Manouane" 
  • Head SE along Chemain de Manouane, find the turn off SW toward Rivière-Rouge
    • Decision time
      • If the road toward Rivière-Rouge looks traversable by a Jeep Liberty, a Subaru, an Iltis, and a couple of pick up trucks - GIVE 'ER.
      • RCAF Station La Macaza - 1963
        Credit: Donald Norrie
      • If the road toward Rivière-Rouge looks too rough, head to Saint-Michel-des-Saints, to Montreal, and to Ottawa - skip the following instructions.
  • Head to the Correctional Services Canada La Macaza Institution... and try not to get arrested. 
  • See BOMARC Missile bunkers
    (from a distance I expect)
  • Take the 117 to Route Des Ormes to the 323
  • Take the 323 to the 315
  • Take the 315 through Mayo to the 148
  • Take the 148 to Ottawa

View Larger Map

Here are the weather forecasts for the areas which we will be visiting. 
In case of rain, snow, sleet, hail, tornado, flying pigs - too bad, we're going anyway...

It's quite possible there will be a few people who won't talk to me after I put them through this! 
It looks like it's going to be really cold!


  1. Make sure to take lots of pictures of the Casey airstrip and any interesting finds.. I've been wanting to go set up camp there and explore the area but my schedule won't allow it before July... until then I'll have to live vicariously through this blog, so thanks in advance for sharing your adventure!!

  2. I don't know if you've seen the latest weather reports - snow and rain for the next foreseeable future! -5C to +5C... it'll be an adventure, no doubt!

    I suspect I'll need to go back again, maybe I'll see you there in July! :)