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Halfway Haven closing

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After 23 wonderful operational years it is with a heavy heart that we announce that Halfway Haven will not re-open for the upcoming seasons. The peace of mind that comes from being in the wild, and soul rejuvenation that remoteness brings our guests is the reason Halfway exists.  That remoteness is also the largest factor in her struggle to survive.  It has always taken operators that act as owners to staff and run Halfway and finding the right people who understand her needs has been difficult.  Our last operators Kym and Rory originally planned to help us for a couple of weeks and were kind enough to carry us through a couple of years with all the difficulties that the COVID19 pandemic brought us last season. We are eternally grateful for their commitment to stay much longer than expected and understand their desire to begin to enjoy retirement.  For over a year we have been feverishly attempting to recruit the next operators at Halfway Haven.  We have not been able to retain the right people despite our best efforts.  We are still looking and have not given up, but lack of operators is the primary reason Halfway is not going to re-open for now. We are still searching for the right persons, or couple who view the running of a remote camp as a life calling.  If you know those people, or if you are those people, please reach out to us! 

The issue of forced closure for most of the last year prevented us from building the financial surplus necessary to sustain. Each busy season in the life of Halfway helps fund the “in between” seasons and keep the bills paid during the slower and shut down months.   As we stand together staring at the looming financial burden the remote operation of Halfway requires to serve her guests, we are all but certain that her future, with continued COVID restrictions in place, border closure, staff unavailability, and declining infrastructure - is ending.

And still, we maintain hope, although diminishing due to the circumstances out of our control.  We saw this day coming but are very determined and not giving up.  We made critical connections this past season with people working in governmental matching grant programs which could provide the funding necessary to rebuild and sustain Halfway Haven operationally – now and into the future. Strong assurances were given that matching capital is available. However, to pursue these programs properly will take enormous amounts of time and determination which cannot be applied if we are working in the camp, attempting to serve a governmentally restricted and limited number of guests. 

So here we find ourselves, a place where we never thought we would be – our hands tied, our available resources consumed, and time quickly running out on Halfway Haven.    We have no choice but to call on friends and acquaintances, many of whom became family over all these past decades, to help with fundraising to raise capital to be able to take advantage of the governmental matching grant programs.  If you, or anyone you know, has an interest in donation, private investment, sources for public investment, or any type of public or private partnership, so that Halfway can have a tomorrow, please contact us today. Our Facebook page will remain active for contact purposes, or you can reach us via email at halfwayhaven@outlook.com or call us at (705) 812-1671.

Lastly, and most importantly, it has been our pleasure to serve you, our family, at Halfway Haven. Those who belong, know exactly how sacred the spirit of Halfway Haven is  and we pray that spirit is not extinguished.

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Not good news for touring sledders. This will likely be very tough on other facilities on the loops.

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$hitty news for sure, but I am sure one that is not surprising given the business and environment as of late.

Wishing things make a change for the better and you can continue to offer the amenities required.

Good luck!  

 

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Never been.  Do they have a grid connection?  Or does the place run off a generator?  Wonder if there would be a way to put an unmaned fuel station in there like what is in Elk Lake.  Not ideal but between that and a warming hut the trail could remain open.   In downtown Toronto there is unmanned pizza machines.  Plug your credit card in and you get a hot meal.  Pair that with a pop machine and you have two of the three services being maintained.  Not the same, but it would do.  Would be interesting to see the math behind the operations.  Too bad to hear this.  It's a critical trail link.  This trail routing seemed to be working well for the local area after the issues in the past.

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1 minute ago, signfan said:

Never been.  Do they have a grid connection?  Or does the place run off a generator?  Wonder if there would be a way to put an unmaned fuel station in there like what is in Elk Lake.  Not ideal but between that and a warming hut the trail could remain open.   In downtown Toronto there is unmanned pizza machines.  Plug your credit card in and you get a hot meal.  Pair that with a pop machine and you have two of the three services being maintained.  Not the same, but it would do.  Would be interesting to see the math behind the operations.  Too bad to hear this.  It's a critical trail link.  This trail routing seemed to be working well for the local area after the issues in the past.

They run off a generator I think it’s 58 kms to the main road that they maintain in the winter 

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I have no idea how this would have NOT happened after this season.

 

It would have been bad enough if they just left it closed up all winter, but then they went in to doo _ due diligence on keeping the trail open, even tho the border is closed.

You take Yanks out of D north, and y'aint got much. Then doo the provincial wide shut down, and no snow, and ....

 

:cry2:

 

Not quite understanding the donation thing?

Not a go fund me?

 

 

.

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OK, you take HH out of the equation, would it be possible to make it up to Chapleau from the Soo w/ a 4S? 

 

This might get the ball rolling on TOP F being reopened north of Chapleau. Otherwise, D'ville & Wawa are on the far end of D15. You might get people staging in Wawa (that's if the US riders come back), but not too many folks are going to ride down from Hearst, stay the night & turn around to run the same trail back.

 

I guess I can consider myself lucky to ridden thru there. Missinabie and M'wadge are 2 other places I've ridden thru in the past that are more or less off the grid nowadays.

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Around 275 km Goulais River to Chapleau.  Risky without a Jerry can on a 4 stroke.  Probably out of question for the 2 stroke crowd even with a jerry can.  Can't see the clubs maintaining it for only a portion of the sledders that would use it.  This sucks.  That trip was on the bucket list.

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Sad day for snowmobiling.  

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This is another blow to tourism in that area.   So does this mean that you cannot get from Chapleau to Wawa anymore either?    

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34 minutes ago, scottyr said:

This is another blow to tourism in that area.   So does this mean that you cannot get from Chapleau to Wawa anymore either?    

Correct. C101F was extended to TOP D (becoming C101D) when TOP F was more or less closed north & south of Chapleau.

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46 minutes ago, scottyr said:

This is another blow to tourism in that area.   So does this mean that you cannot get from Chapleau to Wawa anymore either?    

Just need gas...Question is, will Wawa, and Sault still groom, and make the loop for the adventurers. 

Edited by Turbo Doo
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1 hour ago, revrnd said:

Correct. C101F was extended to TOP D (becoming C101D) when TOP F was more or less closed north & south of Chapleau.

The last time I did that run is when the old trail was still there that went to Missinabie.   Maybe they will have no choice to but to try and re-open that trail?   

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4 hours ago, scottyr said:

This is another blow to tourism in that area.   So does this mean that you cannot get from Chapleau to Wawa anymore either?    

That is doable without stopping at half way for gas for most newer snowmobiles. Question is who will groom that section and where will fuel come from for groomer with half way gone. Still abit of hope but black creek is for sale too and has been for awhile. This won’t help thier situation either. 

Edited by Strong Farmer
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Maybe the OFSC can step in after the year they had for permit sales.

 

There was expenses but Parry Sound was shutdown for a good part of season.

 

The season started late and ended early.

 

How many permits were sold?

 

Revenues vs last year?

 

 

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1 hour ago, Sksman said:

Maybe the OFSC can step in after the year they had for permit sales.

 

There was expenses but Parry Sound was shutdown for a good part of season.

 

The season started late and ended early.

 

How many permits were sold?

 

Revenues vs last year?

 

 

What would you have the OFSC do in this situation?

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2 hours ago, Strong Farmer said:

That is doable without stopping at half way for gas for most newer snowmobiles. Question is who will groom that section and where will fuel come from for groomer with half way gone. Still abit of hope but black creek is for sale too and has been for awhile. This won’t help thier situation either. 

Black Creek has been cut off from Chapleau for a few years now, so this is a completely different issue.

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25 minutes ago, revrnd said:

Black Creek has been cut off from Chapleau for a few years now, so this is a completely different issue.

Kms from Wawa, thru halfway to Chapleau?.

 

70 to 80 miles Wawa to Halfway.  60 miles from Halfway to Chapleau sound right?. 

Edited by Turbo Doo
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2 hours ago, Sksman said:

Maybe the OFSC can step in after the year they had for permit sales.

 

There was expenses but Parry Sound was shutdown for a good part of season.

 

The season started late and ended early.

 

How many permits were sold?

 

Revenues vs last year?

 

 

Ministry of tourism would be a better source for funding.  OFSC getting into fuel sales / operations would be a long stretch for the organization.  They would have the same issues finding staff.

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326 km wawa to black creek

317 km wawa to Golais river

263 Km wawa to chapleau

285 Km chapleau to black creek

276 Km chapleau to golais river

 

All based on the Algoma Trail Plan map.  You see 200 km between fuel stations in Quebec and it works.  I think that's getting near the max though.  At these distances I think you'd see a lot of ppl getting into trouble.  Detouring through Chapleau helps, but still some big distance many sleds won't make.

 

For comparison what are you Cochrane to Abitibi Base Camp and then down to Smooth Rock.  250 km???  Most consider Abitibi Base Camp to be a necessary lifeline for that trail.

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22 minutes ago, signfan said:

Ministry of tourism would be a better source for funding.  OFSC getting into fuel sales / operations would be a long stretch for the organization.  They would have the same issues finding staff.

Plus the businesses in Wawa that want sledders passing thru.

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33 minutes ago, signfan said:

326 km wawa to black creek

317 km wawa to Golais river

263 Km wawa to chapleau

285 Km chapleau to black creek

276 Km chapleau to golais river

 

All based on the Algoma Trail Plan map.  You see 200 km between fuel stations in Quebec and it works.  I think that's getting near the max though.  At these distances I think you'd see a lot of ppl getting into trouble.  Detouring through Chapleau helps, but still some big distance many sleds won't make.

 

For comparison what are you Cochrane to Abitibi Base Camp and then down to Smooth Rock.  250 km???  Most consider Abitibi Base Camp to be a necessary lifeline for that trail.

Agreed. Most will not be riding from Chapleau to Wawa, or vice versa, without carrying fuel, with HH being closed. Not sure why someone mentioned its doable for most new sleds. :crazy:. Unfortunately even if the loop is kept open thru grooming,  not many will be doing it, unless carrying fuel imo..

Edited by Turbo Doo
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7 minutes ago, Turbo Doo said:

Agreed. Most will not be riding from Chapleau to Wawa, or vice versa, without carrying fuel, with HH being closed. Not sure why someone mentioned its doable for most new sleds. :crazy:. Unfortunately even if the loop is kept open thru grooming,  not many will be doing it, unless carrying fuel imo..

There’s no way the loop will be kept open with out a fuel stop . The OFSC will never allow that just way to much risk 

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10 minutes ago, 1049 said:

There’s no way the loop will be kept open with out a fuel stop . The OFSC will never allow that just way to much risk 

I agree. Look how long Black Creek Outfitters has been for sale, says alot about how many are willing to take on that type of lifestyle/business. Definitely a blow to sledding in that area.  

Edited by Turbo Doo
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This is not good at all, but I'm also not surprised. Not sure how they could stay afloat after the past 14 months.

 

We've been riding that area pretty much exclusively since Sean reopened it. Coming up from Indiana it's not much further than the UP and the riding is incredible up there. We start in Searchmont typically and head all sorts of directions from there but typically go through Halfway Haven at least once. It won't be worth it to drive the extra distance up to Wawa, plus if there is weather, that's not the best road to be on. 

 

I sure hope there's a way forward for them. I always thought they need a team of hosts to stay there, instead of one or two people year-round. 

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