DIVE SITE MAP
DUCK MOUNTAIN REGION
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The Manitoba Underwater Council suggests that on the day of the planned
dive, both the site and diving conditions be adequately assessed and
diving should take place only if these conditions are acceptable. Note,
the Duck Mountain lakes described in this brochure are 2300 feet above
sea level. Caution is advised when using standard nodecompression tables.
It is recommended that altitude tables be consulted and the appropriate
depth corrections applied.
To ensure a safe and enjoyable dive, the council also suggests that
the diver observe the following precautions:
- Always mark your dive site with a diver down flag.
- Be alert for boat traffic when surfacing and snorkelling.
- Never dive alone and always do a buddy check before descending.
- After a long snorkel, rest at the surface prior to descent.
- Do not dive beyond your comfort zone.
- Watch depth and bottom time carefully.
- Finally, practice good buoyancy control. Much of the bottom
the lake is silty. Bottom floundering can drastically reduce visibility
creating a hazard for you and for those following.
The information provided in this brochure is intended as a guide.
Although we have attempted to advise the diver of any hazards, some hazards
may exist of which we are unaware. It is the divers responsibility to
obtain further information where available.
Call Operator - ask for ZENITH 50,000 Contact the R.C.M.P. and state the following:
"This is a diving emergency."
DIVEPAC is a service provided by the Manitoba Underwater Council
with financial assistance from Sport Manitoba and Manitoba Lotteries
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Duck Mountains Notes
The highest point in Manitoba (Baldy Mountain, 2727 feet or 895 m) is found
in Duck Mountain Provincial Park. The terrain within the park was formed by
two primary geological events. During the Mesozoic era deposits of shale,
sandstone and bentonite, derived from volcanic mountain ranges far to the
west, were laid down as alluvial plains in the shallow seas then covering
the area. The shale deposits, known as Odanah shale, have a high silica
content and are extremely hard. During the successive glaciations of the
Pleistocene epoch this hard grey shale resisted the scouring action of the
glaciers as they advanced and returned across the face of what is now
Manitoba. At the same time, softer sediments to the east were affected to
a greater degree. The result is the present day Manitoba escarpment. During
the retreat of the glaciers during the last glaciation some 11,000 years ago,
areas of stagnant or "dead ice" moraine, along with glacial till, were left
behind in many locales. The hummock topography, typical of the Duck
Mountains, formed as a result. Debris on the glacier ice would slide into
depressions on the surface. As the ice melted these formed debris ridges
and the last remnants of the glacial ice melted into depressions between
ridges to form the elevation of these lakes relative to the surrounding
terrain translates into minimal runoff entering them. The result is good
to excellent visibility for snorkelling and SCUBA diving. Childs Lake and
the Blue Lakes offer the best SCUBA diving in the region. Note that no
commercial air station operates in the region on a regular basis. All air
requirements must be addressed as part of your pre-dive planning.
Childs Lake has a been home to the Dauphin Dolphins Spearfishing Contest
for over 25 years. The lake can be reached from the east entrance of the
park near Garland north of Dauphin on Highway 10 or from the south and west
through San Clara north of Roblin. Childs Lake is popular not only for
SCUBA divers but fishermen and pleasure boaters as well. Extreme caution is
advised when diving in areas of high boat traffic. Use the diver down flag
and always surface near the flag. Childs Lake has a gently sloping, silty
bottom contour that can be easily disturbed resulting in reduced visibility.
A maximum depth of 158 feet is recorded in the south basin. Fish species
include pickerel, trout and mariah (object of the annual spearfishing
contest). Weed beds in the north end of the lake offer the potential for
interesting night diving. A provincial camp ground offers 52 unserviced
sites and 37 electrical sites. All general supplies including boat and
motor rentals are available at the nearby store-lodge-restaurant complex,
as is boat launching.
There are no individual site descriptions for this lake.
The Blue Lakes of Duck Mountains can be reached from Dauphin by taking
Highway 10 north to Garland and proceeding westerly for 32 km along
PR. 366. Approaching from the west, these lakes are approximately 18 km
east of Childs Lake. Depths in West Blue Lake range to approximately 60
feet in the north and up to 100 feet in the south central. The southern
end of the lake is relatively shallow with a maximum depth of approximately
45 feet. Shore access is limited to the north end of the lake and the area
adjacent to the campground. Note that internal combustion engines are not
allowed on the lake. East Blue Lake has a maximum depth in excess of 200
feet. The visibility in East Blue lake is generally superior to West Blue
and the latter is more subject to algae blooms in late summer. Both lakes
have generally sandy to silty bottoms so care must be taken to avoid stirring
up bottom sediments. The sharpest dropoff to be found in these lakes is along
the east shore of East Blue where depths in excess of 60 feet can be quickly
reached. Both lakes are home to numerous fish species with perch, pike and
walleye predominant in West Blue and various trout, splake and perch in East
Blue. Beaver lodges are found in both lakes and make for interesting
observation. As well, East Blue Lake is known to be spring-fed. Including a
visit to one of the springs during your dive is highly recommended. A
provincial campground consisting of 89 unserviced sites, is in operation
between May and October. A general purpose store provides essentials. Boat
motor and canoe rentals are available. When diving these lakes, remember they
are 2200-2300 feet above sea level. Therefore, make appropriate corrections
for altitude diving.
There are no individual site descriptions for these lakes