Trip Report: Casque Isles Hiking Trail

Trip Report: Casque Isles Hiking Trail

on the weekend of June 17 i went out and was able to finally complete the Casques Isle hiking trail that I attempted to complete last year, but couldnt due to some dickwad who rifed through my van! anyway, I have been wanting to get this done this year especially since I have some new gear that needed to get put to the grind and test out.

after some thinking, I decided to start from Whitesand Provincial Park rather than Rossport as I have started from there previously twice before. between the park and Schreiber beach was nothing new as I have also hiked to this section before. it was after the beach where things got interesting. shortly after hiking off of the beach and disappearing into the woods, the sections from here were straight up some of the most challenging I have done. the elevation gains were immediate and felt that I was hiking "up" way too much! i ended up yelling in the bush on how much "up" there was haha.

not to mention the bugs! they were everywhere and followed me pretty much the entire hike. when I came across some cool places to take a break, at first the mosquitos weren't around, but after only a few moments, I was surrounded. I didn't bring any bug spray (personal choice that maybe I kind of regret slightly, however I don't like using the stuff in general), but I had a bug net that provided all of the protection that I really needed. the only annoying thing about being swarmed by them was the buzzing. my sun hoodie was mostly providing protection from them but they were trying to get through the fabric to me. many mosquitos were killed. even after putting in 20km and arriving at Les Petit Ecrits for the night, they wasted no time in trying to feed off of me. I had no choice but to set up my tent quickly and hunker down for the entire evening and night because of how many there were. unbelievable! couldn't catch a break. I should have ate, but I ended up passing out instead.

the next day, I was greeted by mosquitos and a family of geese that were next to my tent. but literally 5 minutes after being outside, I was already breakfast for some 100 mosquitos. I wasn't having it. I ended up eating some breakfast, tore my shit down and got out of there with the bug net on my head. this day was a lot of up and down. I feel that I handled it well for the most part. not smoking cigarettes for 4 years now or doing dabs or vapes or any of that stuff really helps. I noticed that my lung endurance is back to normal and my breathing control is on point when ascending a steep hill or climb. once at the top, recovery times are also back to normal. i feel great! not to say that the continuous up-and-down didn't wear me out (i was beat) as it was very challenging.


but all of that was worth it. i got to see and experience it all: high elevation gains, stunning views of the surrounding area, coastal hiking, and quick terrain changes that added to the difficulty of the last 20km of the hike. there were times where I was hiking a section of trail, and thought about getting off of the trail, being close to a highway access point. but I told myself to keep on doing it so that I could say that at least I have completed the entire Casque Isles trail. I am glad that I decided to stay on trail to finish it. the reward was seeing my rental car parked at the trailhead from Terrace Bay (Aguabason Gorge) and changing into some clean clothes! I chilled out for a half hour before deciding to hit the highway back home.

this was a real good test of all of the gear that I ended up upgrading this season. I feel that it all performed well, including the backpack (Waymark Mile 28). there was one time where my neck and shoulders were starting to feel sore, but this was the first time taking everything out so perhaps I was adjusting to it? it feels great when worn. I haven't felt that in other trips with this backpack, so I will assume this was a one-off. the Uberlite deflated! but I attribute that to the colder ground, and that I didn't have anything underneath it (at the time, the temps were just getting warmer, so the nights were still cooler in the low single digit celsius temps). I have read about this issue from other users online. however, this only occurred once as this has not happened to me any other time I have used it. this pad is comfortable and I still feel that it was worth the investment. all of the gear will be talked about in another post sometime in the future.