Canoe Camp the Caddy Lake Tunnels

Whiteshell, Manitoba


Added by Rory Court

This paddle takes you through two amazing rock tunnels that connect three seperate lakes. You are almost guaranteed to have yourself some peace and quiet after going through the first tunnel.

Start your trip by renting your canoe at either Green Bay Resort or Caddy Lake Resort, or if you know someone with a cottage on Caddy Lake, rent a canoe on ShareShed or from Winnipeg Canoe Rental and launch from your friend's cottage to save some money.  Once you have launched from your starting point on Caddy Lake, paddle to the North end of the lake, if the weather is good this should take you no longer than 30-45 minutes to reach.

Once you reach the end of the lake, you will have to find the first tunnel, which is not immediately visible.  There is one cottage at the end of the bay on the North end of the lake, just to the right of this cottage there is a triangular sign marking the entry point to the tunnel that leads to South Cross Lake.   Pass through the tunnel and find yourself on the South end of South Cross Lake.  If you are lucky, the wind will be at your back and you will have a laid back paddle down the lake, if you are even luckier, you will have no wind and glass calm conditions.

Along South Cross Lake there are several first come first serve backcountry camping sites, they are marked by a short metal pole on the shoreline.  South Cross has almost no cabins, making it an awesome spot to camp and get away from society.  We decided to camp on a peninsula on the West side of the lake that offered plenty of space for our larger group of 7 people and 4 tents.  However, I would recommend going for site 5 which is a spacious island in the middle of the lake.  

At this point, depending on how you want to spend your trip, consider setting up camp for the night.  To get to the middle of South Cross Lake is about 1.5 hours in good conditions, which makes for a perfect Friday evening paddle before setting up camp and enjoying a fire in one of the backcountry fire pits with some friends.

The next day, load up the canoes with our without your gear and head North on South Cross Lake, the lake is long and narrow, so you don't have to worry about too many navigational decisions.  After about one hour of paddling from the middle of South Cross Lake you will reach the north end of the lake, meaning you have reached the second tunnel.  This tunnel is a lot lower and a lot longer than the first, sometimes there are bats in the tunnels so be sure that you wear a long sleeve hooded layer to give yourself some protection (bats carry rabies).  

Once you get through the tunnel, make sure you navigate your canoe through the metal stakes that mark the rocks and stay between them to have deep enough water for you canoe (it would not be fun to poke a hole in your canoe at this point).  After navigating through the stakes, proceed North on North Cross Lake and find yourself a nice spot to enjoy lunch/set up camp.  If you plan on returning to your original site, this is a good distance for a day trip and by the time you get back to your site it will have been about a 4-5 hour laid back journey.  

What you do at this point it really up to you, we decided to head back to our original camp and enjoy dinner to the sunset.  The next morning we paddled into strong winds back onto Caddy Lake and once making land we drove to the town of nearby West Hawk Lake to enjoy Sunday morning breakfast at the Nite Hawk Cafe, which is locally owned and highly recommended - a perfect way to end your canoe trip. 

Read More

Download the Outbound mobile app

Find adventures and camping on the go, share photos, use GPX tracks, and download maps for offline use.

Get the app



Canoe Camp the Caddy Lake Tunnels Reviews

Have you done this adventure? Be the first to leave a review!

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


Climb at Lily Pond

Hike the High Lake Trail

Hike to the Top of the World

Explore the Pinawa Suspension Bridge

Kayak the Bird River Canyon

Canoe and Camp on Dogtooth Lake