A few things, my man:
-I don't think @JusticeLordDenning was making the sort of value judgement you read in to that. Asking how students fare outside the formal recruit is not saying that the formal recruit jobs are necessarily the best jobs out there.
-Both the DOJ and provincial Crown prosecution service participate in the formal recruit, so that's a poor example to illustrate your point. "Jobs in the recruit" isn't synonymous with "BigLaw."
-I highly doubt that there is a huge difference in the level of interest in the formal recruit between Canadian law schools in general, and especially between Queens and Western as a specific example.
And just to be clear, I'd be the last person to boost BigLaw or claim that working at a smaller firm outside the GTA is somehow inferior.
Some of this is might be based on what I consider to be a false assumption: That law students who secure jobs at big firms in an urban area have succeeded while those who do not have failed. For example, a Queens student may have the career goal of securing a foot in the door with the Crown in a rural area and a Western student may want to get into business law with a small firm in a medium sized city.
Having those two years working with members of Parliament is an added bonus, the significance of which is proportional to the nature of your role.
You should get one or two acceptances from those law schools provided you keep your grades up.
You seem like the type of person who will make the right decision about this. Good luck!
On this site I regularly see people with LSAT scores 20-30 points lower than mine making ridiculous assertions about the amount of work that is supposedly required to get a top score. By contrast my personal experience was that the prep required to get a 99th percentile LSAT score consisted of learning basic logic game diagramming and writing a handful of practice tests. I see people with scores in the 150s knowing all the names of the different types of logical reasoning questions and discussing the logic behind them in terms I never learned and don't understand. All I know is if you put the test in front of me I intuitively understand what almost all of the answers are, but I couldn't do a good job of articulating why--the answers simply seem self-evident and to be taken for granted.
Just chiming in because your statement squares with my experience (although I didn't reach 177). But by and large people with mediocre scores invariably claim that the LSAT is all about effort and just don't want to believe that innate aptitude has anything to do with it, because they tend to view it as an attack on their intelligence in general.
(Just so I don't seem like a totally arrogant douche, everyone: for what it's worth I've put in serious effort trying to learn instruments and second languages and my innate aptitude in both of those areas is abysmal--I found such endeavors nearly impossible. Also the innate LSAT aptitude did not translate into innate law school aptitude, and I certainly would have preferred the latter. But yeah, the fact that I suck at other things but can effortlessly get an LSAT score in the 170s just emphasizes how much of it is innate. And the degree to which there are different kinds of intelligences that people have varying aptitudes for. The LSAT is irrelevant to me now in practical terms but I do find the subject interesting from a psychological perspective.)