Canol Road Expedition

Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
266
Location
Delburne, Alberta
There is much to consider on a trip like this.

For myself, the thinking is as follows. What would have to fail to strand my vehicle? Here is a couple things that didnt make the first list.

I plan to source an injection pump gasket kit, o rings and the like. Because who knows?

Timing belt, as mentioned, but also considering a water pump and gasket. Mine is new, only about 20 000 km on it now. Did the idler while I was in there too, but, it is a key piece of the puzzle. Not really heavy, not real big, but key.

Turbo parts? Yep. Not much in there. Bushing or bearings depending on unit and a couple o rings. Small, light parts to have, but if an o ring fails and starts puking oil at an alarming rate, could be very bad news. Short of a housing or compressor wheel failure theres not much else to go wrong.

I also plan to check each and every hose on my truck, replace anything that is the least bit questionable. Will carry a variety of small hoses and clamps for turbo oil and coolant lines, oil cooler, fuel, etc.

Does anybody know of a larger hose system for coolant? Thinking a build your own kinda set up for versatility?

Now would be the time to start fixing all those little things you've ignored because "it'll be fine for now" never to be looked at again.

Ever changed your thermostat? I had one stick and blow a hose off on some god forsaken highway in mid winter Northern Ontario. Limped it to some kind of civilization with a blown head gasket and no heat 6 hours later. Wasn't fun. That 22RE never quit though, thankfully. Points for Toyota awesomeness but you get the idea.


Alternator and starter dont really bother me, either can be dealt with as long as at least one truck is still moving.

Plan to do clutch in the near future, but what about the slave cylinder? Also not real big, not real heavy, not likely to fail. But difficult to do without.

As far as brake parts go will probably bring along a couple flex line with fittings to use in either front or rear. Also a length or two of hard line with unions, and flaring kit to go with. Cant really see a caliper or cylinder failure being a show stoppper.

How about a spare winch line. One per truck suddenly gives us a whole lot of reach. Crosby clips, a thimble and hook for the end would make them quite versatile.

I plan to pack a bunch of electrical goodies, variety of wire sizes, couple switches, fuses, connectors, butane soldering unit. love thy shrink wrap. Consider some heavy wire too. Not saying everybody need get some, but at least some could come in handy.

More to come I'm sure.

I plan to get myself a water filtration device rather than carry a large quantity for the whole trip. Most will be famillar with the small pump style filter favoured by hikers and the like. Heavier duty versions intended for much larger quantities of water are available. Also a spare filter or two to go with.


So how about these awesome pontoons I've heard about? Time to get busy... Lets set up a good hard look, get something built and get testing!

Thoughts?
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2010
Messages
955
Location
Edmonton
For the pontoons, the one variable that could be the same for every vehicle is the rock sliders. What about a frame that clamps to the outer slider bar? They are supposed to hold the whole weight of vehicle right? Frame woould need to adjust for height and width, but the clamp would work for all the sliders.
 
Joined
Jan 20, 2012
Messages
92
the pictures are great but the authors elitist attitude towards quaders and 4wheelers was not needed
 
Joined
Aug 20, 2012
Messages
2
the pictures are great but the authors elitist attitude towards quaders and 4wheelers was not needed
Just to clear the air, I'm the guy who blogged the trip.
My "elitist" attitude refers to two specific trips on the Canol, both of which were named.
The guys with Field and Stream left lots of their junk wrecked along the way. The gear they left at the Twitya has been torn to shreds by bears and strewn about. Plenty of NT locals use their quads to hunt the North Canol, many as far as the Godlin, and leave the area clean. But its their backyard, and they respect it. It was also very cool to see how the quadders from Alberta who made the whole trip in 2010(?) dealt with the many difficulties. They totally earned our respect for their determination and ingenuity, and as best we could see left very clean camps.
The land Rover team made a huge mess of many of the sections of the trail, and made no friends with the outfitters in the area.
So if commenting on guys who don't pack out their junk, and trash the trail makes me "elitist", well so be it.
Now just to give out some trail intel, I know my blog makes it sound impossible, and that maybe I don't know what I'm talking about, but seriously gents, it just ain't going to happen.
There are many sections where the guys from Ab on their wheelers had to crib sections, and dig new trail. All this a long ways above the river or creek bed on serious wash outs. It must have taken days, never mind trying to dig enough trail to get a full size rig around. Where the Land Rovers turned around, well, the trail gets way worse further down the Godlin, never mind getting over the pass to the Twitya. The road/trail down the Ekwi and down the upper Godlin is childs play compared to what awaits further on. I've spent some time with buddies in Alaska in their Moose rigs, and I know what time, winches and a big block can do in terms of swamp, but that pass to the Twitya would be a show stopper.
The "road" down the Goldin has washed out sections very high above the river, and the quads were "just" able to get around. They must have had a couple guys hanging on the uphill side to sneak sections they dug out and cribbed by hand. If they had rolled a rig there, it would have been bad news. Like I said in my report, a small Cat would be the only way you are getting a rig around these washouts.
And this isn't even to half way. Trout creek, the creek down off Plains of Abraham, the valley of the Little Keele, upper Dodo creek, Dodo canyon. Oh, and getting your rig down off the bank onto whatever raft you came up with to get across the Twitya. Its seriously steep, and the river is deep right off the bank.
I've seen what guys in crawlers can do in Moab, Rubicon trail etc, and the North Canol is in a whole different category.
So, if you still want to give it a whack, well, best of luck to ya. It would be politically astute (not to mention respectful)to speak to the outfitters in the area prior to any planned trip. Its wise to have these guys on your side, because in case of an emergency, they are the only help in the area, not to mention the only planes or choppers near at hand.
Feel free to ask any questions you want about the trail, and I'd be happy to answer them as best I am able.
 

Bambino840

Jive Turkey
SILVER Star
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2008
Messages
995
Location
Stony Plain,AB
the pictures are great but the authors elitist attitude towards quaders and 4wheelers was not needed
I think its a great write up. To the point, respected everything out there.

Elitist? Don't think so. Just truthful.I'll take honesty anyday.

I've spent enough time in the backcountry on my quad and trying to get back into four wheeling to know alot of those pics are not passable without damage. Nevermind the fact quads would get washed away in that speed of riverflow.

Mountain bikes and rafts are ballsy and treadlightly.

Kudos to those that did that trip. Its way harder than I would have expected and I appreciate the write-up.

Cheers :beer:
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2004
Messages
1,427
Location
Red Deer, Alberta
I agree, I have to say that some who seem to think no one will ever get to the point they have reached may just not care and just leave a disaster behind them. I didn't think your write up was inappropriate at all. One of the best write ups I have read so far. We will see what we can do or how far we can get. Impressed though at how easily you guys made a feat like this look with just some gear, bikes, and some rafts. Truely amazing to say the least.
 
Joined
Aug 20, 2012
Messages
2
Certainly was a fun trip, didn't feel very amazing at the time. Being able to shoulder your transportation and carry it at any given time speeds things up considerably.
A fun trip would be just to go in as far as the lower Ekwi. Much less committing and less rough on your rig. The final crossing
of the Ekwi would be pretty serious if the water came up. He!!, its serious eough at low water. Just getting to that final crossing would probably fullfill most guys rock crawling lust for quite some time:D
You could probably spend a fun 1-2 weeks just getting that far and coming back, with time to fish/explore as well. There is a serious swamp maybe 5-6 km from the final crossing on the Ekwi. If I was contemplating any sort of 4x4 rig journey on the N Canol, I would seriously consider bringing along some Marsden matting, it might make the swampy bits more manageable.
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2004
Messages
1,427
Location
Red Deer, Alberta
Jeremy was talking about heading up for scouting at the end of June. Or just to have a Yukon adventure. Progress is being made on rigs as I'm dedicating much more time and funds to get things rolling. As well as getting others up and running for the upcoming trips.
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2004
Messages
1,427
Location
Red Deer, Alberta
We will have to start discussing who is in on this trip. And get everyone to calculate fuel. And have fuel trailers for the group. But pulled only by the vehicles best suited for towing. If we are going to do this its going to have to be a team effort.
 
Joined
Dec 27, 2009
Messages
54
Location
DeBolt, AB
We will have to start discussing who is in on this trip...If we are going to do this its going to have to be a team effort.
Refresh my memory, when are you guys planning to do the attempt itself? You're not going to get too far down the Canol in June, but I might be interested in going for a look. I was planning to drive down to the Tsichu last August and canoe in to Norman Wells, but ended up doing the Gataga/Kechika instead.
 

Awl_TEQ

Supporting Vendor
 
Joined
Aug 27, 2008
Messages
4,156
Location
Calgary Alberta
This Canol trip came up in conversation at our meetings and get togethers few times last year. We though the trip had fizzled and been abandoned. Glad to see you're still working it.
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2004
Messages
1,427
Location
Red Deer, Alberta
We would be making the attempt late summer or fall. Most likely fall. Yeah we are still working on it. Some vehicle platforms have changed. And some vehicles are being built from the ground up. Then we are planning a test run on the McKenzie trail. Make sure everything is up to the real challenge.
 
Top Bottom