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Maheux-Cree (Val-D'Or - Chisasibi via Route de la Baie-James)

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http://www.maheux-cree.com/

Starting this month, Maheux of Abitibi is starting a new service, a first in the region. They'll be operating a bus service to Chisasibi, Eeyou-Istchee, via Amos, Matagami and the entire length of the James Bay Road.

It'll run two round trips a week, heading south on Monday and Thursday, and heading north on Sunday and Wednesday. Appears judging by the publicity material that they plan to use one of their newer current-generation Prevost H3-45s with Volvo powertrains.

So, any of you guys want to take a shot of going for an actual adventure on one of the most isolated land-based public transport routes in Canada, here's your chance. I'm already begging my family to take me. I always wanted to go up this road, as I've seen various trip reports of people from the south who went up there in trucks, cars and on motorcycles.

I wonder if this is successcul, whether Eeyou will start planning local public transit services like Nunavik has?

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5 hours ago, MCI102A3 said:

http://www.maheux-cree.com/

Starting this month, Maheux of Abitibi is starting a new service, a first in the region. They'll be operating a bus service to Chisasibi, Eeyou-Istchee, via Amos, Matagami and the entire length of the James Bay Road.

It'll run two round trips a week, heading south on Monday and Thursday, and heading north on Sunday and Wednesday. Appears judging by the publicity material that they plan to use one of their newer current-generation Prevost H3-45s with Volvo powertrains.

So, any of you guys want to take a shot of going for an actual adventure on one of the most isolated land-based public transport routes in Canada, here's your chance. I'm already begging my family to take me. I always wanted to go up this road, as I've seen various trip reports of people from the south who went up there in trucks, cars and on motorcycles.

I wonder if this is successcul, whether Eeyou will start planning local public transit services like Nunavik has?

Wow that's quite a long route. According to Google Maps the driving time each way from Val d'Or to Chisasibi is 10 hours.

In a way this service is a little like the Ontario Northland service, where it also provides service to communities deep within the Canadian Shield in the northern parts of the province. Maheux-Cree is definitely worth a try, as the long distances it crosses would come across some really beautiful scenery.

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I think if one were to make a fan-doc about this route, it's so long that for my JVC Everio, it would take maybe two 64GB SDHC cards, plus charging equipment, extra batteries and a laptop computer to properly document this trip from a fan's perspective. It'll be a trip for the very adventurous transitfans though. Without even riding this route yet, I think I could compare it with more adventurous trips like the buses that run in outback Australia, Siberia or any long distance routes that travel from Eastern Europe to London, on how exotic and isolated a route such as this is.

 

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23 hours ago, MCI102A3 said:

I think if one were to make a fan-doc about this route, it's so long that for my JVC Everio, it would take maybe two 64GB SDHC cards, plus charging equipment, extra batteries and a laptop computer to properly document this trip from a fan's perspective. It'll be a trip for the very adventurous transitfans though. Without even riding this route yet, I think I could compare it with more adventurous trips like the buses that run in outback Australia, Siberia or any long distance routes that travel from Eastern Europe to London, on how exotic and isolated a route such as this is.

 

Recording on this route would be way better if the coach had rechargeable power outlets. Not sure if Maheux's coaches have them, but I've been on newer coaches like MCI J4500 and Van Hool TD925 and they all have them.

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Every Maheux coach has power outlets on them, as well as WiFi. I take them twice a year to see my dad in Amos, taking ONR to North Bay and then taking Maheux to Rouyn (really nice route. My footage sucks though, I plan on making a proper video next year). Thankfully my JVC has a 5 hour battery in it, but I don't have a 64GB card yet. But if I do go on this one, I'll buy a couple if ever I do it.

 

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45 minutes ago, Bus_Medic said:

I've actually driven the route with SMS a couple of years ago.

great news that now it will be accessible to anyone.

heres a link to a very good site devoted to the James bay road:

http://www.jamesbayroad.com/

Ah, thanks. :) I've followed the JBH since I was a teenager. In fact I'm planning to join their forums to find out points of interest on the road for whenever I go up there.

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Cool. Won't be the only trip I make, that's for sure.

been to moosonee and moose factory 3 times so far too.

kind of a middle of nowhere roadgeek

still have to do pickle lake, Ontario, the trans taiga road, trans Labrador highway, then the dempster and Alaskan. List goes on...

wife wants to do a belated honeymoon trip to Churchill Manitoba in November to see the polar bears.

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15 minutes ago, Bus_Medic said:

Cool. Won't be the only trip I make, that's for sure.

been to moosonee and moose factory 3 times so far too.

kind of a middle of nowhere roadgeek

still have to do pickle lake, Ontario, the trans taiga road, trans Labrador highway, then the dempster and Alaskan. List goes on...

wife wants to do a belated honeymoon trip to Churchill Manitoba in November to see the polar bears.

I'm originally from Timmins and have family on both sides of the border in that part of Canada, both French and Cree. The JBH is a really intriguing road for me. As someone of Cree background, I like how the stop signs on some of the bush roads are only in Cree syllablcs.

On a related note to the Trans-Taiga, isn't there a Hydro-Quebec bus that runs that road? I recall seeing pictures of an older XL45 painted in Hydro blue on Jacques Matte's page years ago and seeing a picture of presumably that same bus at Brisay through Google search this year. Idk when it was taken, or if the guy who took the photo was a Hydro employee or a relative who got the trip, but if my Maheux trip works out, that might be another one I might plan if they offer tours. I would assume it runs a route from the LG3 airport to Brisay and all the other dams.

I have family from Moose Factory and all these northern communities. In fact, my late grandmother and one of my uncles both did work up there, related to politics, mining and other things. My uncle is involved in various projects up there as a consultant and my grandmother was a Cree translator, one of the best in the region in fact. I went to Peawanuck in 2013 for Creefest, it's the second-northernmost community in Ontario.

They do have sort of a transit service there, one late-2000s Ford Club Wagon 15-passenger that shuttles the elders around there. The only way to get there by land is a winter road from Gillam, MB which passes through Fort Severn, the absolute northernmost community in Ontario. Ice Road Truckers went to Peawanuck a few years ago with a couple Polar Industries trucks.

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Cool stuff. Sounds like you and I should do a trip sometime. I've always just liked the north. Can't really explain why. Childhood camping went as far north as Sudbury. Did do coast to coast road trip with the folks though.

a ford club wagon should be more than adequate. Probably better it's a gas job, given the winters.

i noticed all the hydro Quebec vehicles in Radisson were gasoline where possible.

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1 hour ago, Bus_Medic said:

Cool stuff. Sounds like you and I should do a trip sometime. I've always just liked the north. Can't really explain why. Childhood camping went as far north as Sudbury. Did do coast to coast road trip with the folks though.

a ford club wagon should be more than adequate. Probably better it's a gas job, given the winters.

i noticed all the hydro Quebec vehicles in Radisson were gasoline where possible.

Yeah, the Club Wagon was gas.

Yeah, it's special to me because I was born there. I feel like there's people "down south" who brag about how many stamps are on their passports and how far around the world they've travelled, but I got just as great an experience travelling from Simcoe County to my stomping grounds in Northern Ontario and Northern Quebec.

And as a transitfan and railfan, I feel this experience also allows me to share really valuable material with this great community that most wouldn't otherwise get to see as some of us seldom get to travel up there. I was a frequent passenger on the Northlander throughout my high school years and got to know all the crews and bus drivers up there. It's a beautiful place, and the transport up there is also not too small, not too big, and easy to keep track of, which I like, it's very unique. I have lots of stuff from Simcoe County, Northern Ontario and Abitibi-Temiscamingue that most people don't have or have very little of.

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