The proposed project would make all this too dangerous to continue …

Sep 102014

Click at the right to view the video, or you can see it at

Thanks to John Wright of North 45 Communications, here is a flying drone’s view of the Bala falls. We’re over the Moon River, looking east over Burgess Island and upstream towards Bala Bay on Lake Muskoka. In front of us to the left is the Bala north falls and upstream of that, the Bala north channel. To the south, that is, to the right of the Bala north falls, is Burgess Island, and to right of that, is the Bala south channel, and upstream of that is the Bala south dam.

All the water from Lake Muskoka and the 5000 km² watershed upstream, which extends to Algonquin Park, flows through the Bala falls, to the Moon River, which is below us. From here the water flows west to Georgian Bay and to Lake Huron. The traditional and historic Bala Portage is directly in the centre in front of us, on Burgess Island, just south of the Bala north falls. Before railroads and highways, travel by water was essential for trade and for the First Nations that lived here first. And the Bala Portage connected people in the area to the horizon and beyond to the Great Lakes and to the rest of the world.

People are drawn to the Bala falls. The Bala falls are accessible, beautiful, natural, and unique. The Bala falls drive the area’s economy. But a proponent and the provincial government wish to build a hydro-electric generating station right on the Bala Portage. This would both obstruct the Bala Portage and take 94% of the water from the falls, leaving only a trickle for what is called Scenic Flow. People won’t come to Bala to see the dry rocks where the falls used to be.

We’re now farther east, over Bala Bay, looking south over the upstream safety boom for the Bala south dam and downstream of that is the Bala south dam and then the Bala south channel and the Moon River. To the right is the Canadian Pacific Railway, and past that is Muskoka Road 169.

We’re farther north, still over Bala Bay and looking south. Here we can see the Bala south dam ahead of us, then to the right is Diver’s Point, and to the right of that is the Bala north channel. In the distance ahead of us is the Kee to Bala.

We’re farther south now, to our right is the Kee to Bala. And ahead of us, courtesy of the hard-working and early-rising staff at PaddleShack, are 38 of their Kayaks, carefully arranged by size, Save Bala Falls.

For more information, please visit us at

  3 Responses to “Video: a Drone’s view of the Bala falls”

  1. Listen to the people. Stop this ill-conceived project.

  2. Well done guys!

  3. Wow! What a great drone video by Johnny Wright @North45JW with an equally great voice over by Mitchell Shnier.
    Fantastic collaborative effort leads to viral infection?

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