Paddling James Bay, Canada

I am interested in any information about paddling on James Bay. Such things as paddling conditions, best times to trip, precautionary measures or any other information or advise.

What difference could it possibably
make where you paddle if your blind…?

I looked into the
trip on james bay myself. as chisasibi is one of the most northern points accessible via road. However the bay is prone to high tides, which in and of itself is not that big of a deal, but there are large mud flats along the eastern shore that make it very hard to land, because you may have a shallow bay area with 3 miles of tidal flats to drag your kayak over when you want to land, unless you want to wait 6 hours for the tide to come back in.

Other wise polar bears and brown bears are always an issue in that part of canada.

Check Wilderness forum Hudson Bay sounds

There are many types of blindness.
There are many types of blindness. I have Retinitus Pigmentosa ( tunnel vision ) Why wouldn’t I do this trip>

Been There!
Back in 75’ I did this trip, Albany River down to the Bay down the Bay to Moosenee. Since that time it has become “recommended” not to do that section anymore, or was last I read about it.

I made the mistake of lending my log to someone on the web and haven’t seen it since!

On the section we did it was indeed mudflats and winds can create really screwed up conditions in the shallow waters at high tide. Drop me an email and I can tell you what I know from my experience. It was a hell of a trip, 27 days, and the weather is not very forgiving. Hope this helps.


from heresay only
i’ve heard what was mentioned above and that it is a barren landscape, very travel unfriendly which is why it is not done often. this from a couple who paddled around all of eastern Canada up through Hudson’s Bay and around Ungava, etc.

James Bay and Hudson Bay
are very shallow which makes paddling them dangerous according to Fred Gaskin in a section of Cliff Jacobson’s book Expedition Canoeing, pg 261. “James Bay, and parts of Hudson Bay, are very shallow so your can’t paddle close to shore. You’re in big trouble if your’re 1/2 mile out and a storm blows up!” That’s his opinion for what’s it worth.

just my stupid sense of humor…I was
thinking of blindness in other terms…came across very dumb rather than funnie…you do what you do

hudson bay paddling
Realize that the scenery is non-existant. Stunted spruce and bog. The bugs are persistant throughout the season and there a very few, and sometimes no options for camping. I’ve paddled in Rupert Bay and it was bad enough in that sheltered section. Wouldn’t want to test it further north at Chissabai. Friends of mine enjoyed a night sleeping in their boats out on the mud flats between Hanna Bay and the Moose River outlet. Not fun!

Sleeping on the Mudflats
Yup, we ended up doing that as well. When we exited the Albany for the run down the bay we had a wind that kept us tentbound for two days. We finally got onto the bay around sunset and paddled like hell. Tide going out caught us and we ended up taking turns sleeping in the bottom of the canoes while the other guy waited for the tide to come in, drag the canoe in with the tide until we made shoreline. Happened to us several times while we made our way to the Moose River and Moosenee.

At hightide the water is maybe 4 ft deep or so and when the wind kicked up we were had trouble seeing the other canoe over the wave tops. And you do have to get quite a ways off shore to get away from the really shallow water. Very scary stuff. We heard from a group who started about 2 wks behind us and they had to abandon one boat on the bay due to the wind and the waves.