Sheriff Lake Loop

When I got up this morning, I did what most of these highly educated ‘meteorologists’ do, I looked out the window, to check the weather. It seemed a bit milder than it has been, and it was partly sunny too. I had some necessaries to take care of today, and I really hadn’t intended on doing anything in the way of hiking.

As I walked into town, to take care of a few things, I found that it was just too nice out, and I couldn’t waste an opportunity to get into the bush. I completed the things I had to do, as quickly as possible, and I headed over to the Lacnor mine gate. I was going to head into the Lacnor mine site, but I would take a road that I don’t normally hike.


After walking in, through the Lacnor gate, this is the first bush road you come to, on the left hand side. It leads over towards Sheriff Lake, and into the Milliken mine site. I don’t usually hike the Milliken mine site, because I find that there are too many dog walkers in there, but I was going in the back door, so to speak, so I felt that I should be able to avoid most of them.


The weather had started to change, once I got into the bush, and you can see that the clouds were rolling in pretty heavy now. Also, a fine snow started falling, and would continue for most of my hike today.


This is the very beginning of Lacnor ridge, and I would be heading around behind, and away, to the north of it.


I saw a number of different types of tracks in the snow here. There were cross-country ski tracks, there were snowshoe tracks, and there was one snowmobile track, which made my walking a bit easier than it would have been. Motorized vehicles are not allowed in the mine sites, but I’m sure that there are people who ignore this, and do it anyways.


I hadn’t planned any particular route for my hike today, I just came up with the idea of going in this way, and then I would just choose my route as I went. Turns out that the route I chose ended up being mostly uphill, and it was more of a workout than I had intended.


Looking back, as I head deeper into the bush.

IMG_0010 Panorama

I took a short detour, off the trail, to take this panorama from a high spot.


Another shot from the same spot. Again, these are not the best types of days for taking pictures, and I didn’t bring my big camera with me today, but I did the best I could, given the conditions.


The angry clouds roll in.


I continue my hike, walking on the snowmobile track, through the bush.


Cross-country ski tracks, along the side of the road.


A narrower path, leading into Sheriff Lake.


The quiet of a frozen Sheriff Lake.


A small patch of open water at the dam on Sheriff Lake.


The trail runs along a frozen river here, which comes out of Sheriff Lake, and leads to a small pond. I remember this area from when I hiked it a few years ago, when I first arrived in Elliot Lake.


All is quiet so far, but I know that I’m now heading towards a more used part of the Milliken mine site.


I don’t know where this frozen waterway runs to, there is another smaller no name lake on this route, but it’s not clear, from the map, if it runs into this lake.


I came out to a larger trail, in the Milliken mine site, and now I was on full alert. Almost as soon as I stepped out on that main trail, I heard some people desperately shouting, and from about a hundred yards away I saw a dog charging towards me, as those people screamed for it to come back.

Obviously, I was quite concerned, because these people know their dog better than I do, and the way they were acting, it seemed to me that they thought their dog might do something out of line. It paid absolutely no attention to their desperate pleas and, as it got closer, it appeared to me to be either a pit bull, or some kind of cross breed. Not exactly the type of dog one would want to see charging at them full blast.

As it got closer, somehow I felt that this was not an aggressive charge, although it was coming as fast as it possibly could. I made no attempt to prepare for an aggressive attack, and I was correct, this time. However, it’s very difficult to tell sometimes, what a dogs intentions are, and this situation is exactly why I don’t usually hike in this area. It’s not the dogs that I fear, it’s what would happen if I did have to take some kind of defensive action against someone’s dog that saw me as the enemy. I’m very aware that many people hold their dogs in higher regard than even their own children, which is something I will never understand.

Anyway, they were so far away, it took them a while to reach my position, to retrieve their dog. They did apologize for what had happened, but apologies mean nothing to me. The dog should have been on a leash, and they put it on a leash at that point. This incident was benign but the next one may not be, and I will certainly avoid this area on any future outings. I shouldn’t have to, but this is the kind of society we live in now. People only care about themselves, and no one else.


I continued on my way. I wasn’t angry at all, because, getting angry would only hurt me. They didn’t care one way or the other, so there was no point in trying to teach them anything, and that’s not my job anyways. Soon enough, it was quiet once again.


I reached the shoreline of another, smaller, lake/pond.


These places are so much more alive in the summer time. It’s almost like the difference between a still shot, and a video.

IMG_0059 Panorama

A dimly lit panorama of the smaller lake. As I mentioned earlier, there was also a steady, light snow falling, which doesn’t help, especially with distant shots.


As I leave the area of the smaller lake, I will be turning left, at the top of that hill you can see in the distance. This will take me away from the more popular trails, and back, through the bush, to the trail I came in on.


This distant shot looks a bit misty, but that is actually fine snow falling.

IMG_0074 Panorama

I was over below that ridge. I’m now higher up, and headed back towards the trail I came in on.


A pile of cut wood along the road. The mine maintenance workers do maintain these bush roads, not for us hikers, but for access to key areas of the mine sites.


I’m now back on the snowmobile track that I was walking on when I was coming in.


An old pipe, from the mining era, lies, covered in snow, along the side of the road.

I made my way back out, the same way I had come in, after doing a loop past Sheriff Lake, and a smaller no name lake. It was surely a great workout, since a lot of it was uphill, and I felt pretty good after all that exercise. Not bad for a day I never expected to be hiking.


I received an email informing me that Google Earth Pro, a program that used to cost $400. is now being offered for free. I downloaded it according to the instructions in that email, and it is working just fine. Here is how to get it;

Google has now made their Google Earth Pro available for free (it used to cost $400 for a 1 year license, but demand is so low that it looks like they gave up trying to squeeze some money out of this version).
Here’s what the Pro can do that the non-Pro version can’t:

Print images at 4800×3200; non-Pro is capped at 1000×1000.
Automatically import a few thousand addresses at once to be pinned on a map. You can create a club membership maps or special interest maps, like show every Wal-Mart in Manitoba.
Capture HD videos of what’s on screen.
Measure distances/areas using lines, paths, polygons, circles, and more. Non-pro can only handle lines/paths. This is really handy if you want to measure real estate or estimate construction projects.

All you have to do is go to and fill out the registration form. Ignore anything about costs and buying and free trials. After filling out the form, Google will send you your key by email.

Then, go to to start the INSTALL. Google Earth Pro will install onto your machine (if you have Google Earth already, it will preserve your preferences and locations) and automatically remove the old Google Earth. Totally painless and quick installation.

Again, here is the link to this years Ice Fishing Derby info;


3 responses to this post.

  1. enjoyable —


    • Hey Oliver; Thank you. I bet you have some stories to tell about your surveying days in the mine sites. It must have been a much different, and certainly more wild place back in those days.


  2. Posted by David Rowe on May 3, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Hi Oliver, I live in Australia but I lived at the Sherriff Lake townsite for about 18 months. My father was the Manager of Lacnor. Thank you for your posts. I would love to go back and check the area out. I lived in Elliot Lake too, Axmith St. or drive. Spent a summer living in the Managers house on the Spanish American townsite as well.


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