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Thread: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

  1. #106
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by AJZimm View Post
    Given that much of the Canadian Shield is Precambrian igneous rock, some of the oldest on the planet, from what I recall when I lived and canoed there lo these many years ago, I'd hazard a guess that the circular formations might be tops of upwelling magma plumes that subsequently cooled, hardened and then had their tops ground off by glacial action.

    Alternatively they might be the remains of meteor craters + ejecta that have been worn down by glaciers. Certainly there are enough of them in the Shield. The reason for the rich veins of nickel that supported the mines around Sudbury Ontario for so long is the third-largest impact crater on the planet, known as the Sudbury Basin.

    But, I'm not a geologist would be happy to be corrected by someone who actually knows.
    You are correct regarding The Benjamins /Croker
    http://craterexplorer.ca/croker-island-complex/

    I suspect that the Lake of the Woods formation is the same same.
    R
    Sleep with one eye open.

  2. #107
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Flying over the Shield for a living I saw many circular formations when the light was right, which I wondered might be old plumes, or craters. Very old rock.

  3. #108
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Looks like "The Infinities" by John Banville.

    Tom
    That's the book! I'm not far enough in it to recommend it, but I've enjoyed what I've read.

  4. #109
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Hmm... I don't seem to have that problem (Pigritia Iugis!) Comes in handy for long days on a small boat with a workable self-steering system.

    A last post for today (maybe)--a question, really. You don't have to spend much time looking at charts to notice a characteristic shape to many of the islands on Lake of the Woods--two islands joined together by a low spit of land. Check out these Google Earth images:

    Attachment 81801

    And:

    Attachment 81802

    Is there a geologist in the house? What's up with that?

    Tom
    I'm not a geologist, but I occasionally play one in the classroom (and in the mountains). I think this question is interesting precisely because the phenomenon it identifies wouldn't have struck me as unusual. The spots you identified are all places where the level of the lake is near ground level (and that are located between two higher points (and that have a relatively shallow slope)). If we saw a bunch of these in a very deep lake, I'd think it was unusual- why, of all possible elevations, is so much ground at lake level? But Lake of the Woods seems to be a shallow lake, with most depths around 20 feet.

    http://fishing-app.gpsnauticalcharts....1777/-94.1730

    A thought experiment: You sell the water rights for Lake of the Woods to Southern California, forever draining this basin. 2,000 years from now, will hikers walking along the former lake bottom be surprised that all the places you circled just happen to be about 20' above their heads? Or would they seem like a logical part of the of a topographical continuum?

  5. #110
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Thanks for the comment--it sounds like you are saying that this kind of formation is common, then? What it reminds me of, quite vividly, is Grand Island--a large island just off the southern shore of Lake Superior:

    Grand Island.jpg

    Again, I'm no expert, but that narrow strip connecting the two islands is referred to as a "tombolo" in the Grand Island literature--a low-lying sand deposit that grows to connect two nearby islands. It appears that, even while lake levels are falling, the tombolo continues to grow.

    It's that particular shape--a large island joined to a noticeably smaller island, where both islands are largely parallel, with a perpendicular spit joining them--a "Thor's Hammer" shape--that strikes me as very unusual to see in the kinds of concentrations that seem common on Lake of the Woods. Another view of the Sabaskong Bay area, SE corner of the lake:

    tombolos 3.jpg

    So I'm curious what the conditions are that would cause so many in such a tight space. I've seen plenty of shallow lakes that do NOT feature these tombolo formations. What combination of water depth, topography, current, winds, etc. combine to make this happen so frequently here?

    Tom
    Last edited by WI-Tom; 03-16-2021 at 07:38 AM.
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

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  6. #111
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Williamson View Post
    You are correct regarding The Benjamins /Croker
    http://craterexplorer.ca/croker-island-complex/

    I suspect that the Lake of the Woods formation is the same same.
    R
    Thanks for the pointer to that site, Ron. Good to have some actual science to point to.
    Alex

    A man in an open shirt, sat gazing out to sea; A young man, a hale man, and I wished that I were he and that the things that I loved were as they used to be
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  7. #112
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods


  8. #113
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    Well, that's a bit of good news, in the short term, at least. Time for one more summer of circumnavigating the Aulneau Peninsula. If you've always been thinking of doing that trip, this summer might be a good time for it!

    Thanks for posting.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

  9. #114
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    I live in Ontario but Lake of the Woods is still the best part of a two day drive away if I could cross the border and take the shorter US route. The all Ontario route, which Google Map won’t even plot for me, would add at least another twelve hours. It’s on my list, not this years list but on a list. This year it’s finish building, rig, launch and get some experience in the new boat. So maybe next year.

  10. #115
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    wow so interesting

  11. #116
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    Default Re: A Kurylko Alaska on Lake of the Woods

    A bump to this thread to share a link to a presentation I delivered via Zoom this weekend, as part of the Midwest Mountaineering Outdoor Adventure Expo (virtual this year, but normally held in person at the U of M campus in Minneapolis). If you're interested in a slightly different take on seeing a sail & oar trip on Lake of the Woods, here you go:



    This is a pretty big event, with 10,000+ attendees over a normal 3-4 day event when it's in person, run by a local outdoor shop. Kind of the backpacking/climbing/paddling/camping/outdoors crowd who isn't typically too knowledgeable about small boat sailing. Fun to plant the sail & oar idea in a few places it doesn't usually show up.

    Thanks to Midwest Mountaineering for hosting, and to Chris Cunningham at Small Boats online, who published the first version of this story, including some of the photos and images included in the presentation.

    Cheers,

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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