BWCA Entry Point, Route, and Trip Report Blog

July 28 2017

Entry Point 24 - Fall Lake

Fall Lake entry point allows overnight paddle or motor (25 HP max). This entry point is supported by Kawishiwi Ranger Station near the city of Ely, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 7 miles. "Access is a boat landing at Fall Lake. Several trip options to Newton, Basswood, & Mud Lakes with additionalportages." This area was affected by blowdown in 1999.

Number of Permits per Day: 14
Elevation: 1324 feet
Latitude: 47.9527
Longitude: -91.7213
"This trip will be taking off from Fall Lake up through Newton Falls portage onto Pipestone Bay campsites. 3 day, 2 night trip into the wilderness.

18 lakes in a week

by campcook184
Trip Report

Entry Date: July 28, 2012
Entry Point: Fall Lake
Exit Point: Moose Lake (25)
Number of Days: 7
Group Size: 6

Trip Introduction:
Six staff members of a local canoe training program headed out to see some historic sties (I.e., Ella Hall's grave marker dated 1885 and the sunken steam engine on Hoist Bay, to see if the Four Mile portage was indeed possible and check out as many smaller lakes we could in our time allotted).

Day 1 of 7


Saturday, July 28, 2012 Put in on Fall Lake #24 from The Canadian Border Outfitter. Traveled a short distance down Mile Island to the start of the Four Mile portage. 3/4 mile up the portage we encountered a stream due to recent beaver activity. To our advantage we paddled through the swampy area to Mud Lake. The Mosquitos were unforgiving on this portage. From Mud Lake to Ella Hall we took the 85 rod portage. Ella offered great campsites and the fishing wasn't bad either. One should be aware of the snapping turtles before placing the catch of the day on a stringer. Plenty of room for three tent sites and a few hammocks. 

First nite super: Salmon hobo burgers, red potatoes, onion, carrots in foil wrap inserted into hot coals.

 



Day 2 of 7


Sunday, July 29, 2012 Two nights on Ella Hall Lake allowed a day for exploration. Three islands on the lake had us bushwhacking through thick grounds in search of Ella's grave marker. Almost giving up we circled the third, middle sized, southeast island, on the southeast side of that island and found a perfect clearing. We found this marker at the top of the clearing, with a beautiful view of the surrounding lake.

We returned to camp for a quick chicken salad wrap lunch. Leaving the women at camp, three of us set out to explore the four mile portage on foot. It went from being as wide as a road to a foot path in brush to a flooded track through marsh, at times knee deep. At one point it actually disappears and we had to set up out of water and take to higher ground. While not impossible to travel, I cannot imagine portaging gear through here.  On the way back we ventured west to dip our toes in Muskeg Lake.

Our hopes of spotting the sunken steam engine from the end of the four mile portage in Hoist Bay was a disappointment on this day... Due to whitecaps on Hoist Bay..to be rewarded from a water- paddling view a few days later.

Dinner: pork loin smoked over an open fire served with Stove Top stuffing and cheesy potato soup.

 



Day 3 of 7


Monday, July 30, 2012 The night before's rain caused the Mosquitos to be even more active today. Packing up to head back down the portage to Fall Lake we may have overdosed on the Deet...if there is such a thing.

From Ella to Fall Lake to Newton, Newton to Pipestone Bay....our goal was to reach Back Bay.  Underestimating the toll of four portages and the windy weather, we did not make Back Bay but opted for a campsite northeast of New York Island. This site was a great choice.

Dinner: rehydrated beef and noodles.

 



Day 4 of 7


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Trying to make up ground our group decided to head for Basswood Lake for the night.  Breaking camp, heading out of Pipestone Bay to Back Bay, to Hoist Bay...we paused to explore this side of the four mile portage. 

We were able to find the sunken steam engine as clear as day a few generous inches above the waters surface located on the east side of the creek coming out of Gook Lake.

From Hoist Bay we headed to Basswood Lake and stopped for lunch at Norway Island. This site on the east side of the island was open and sunny, full of Mosquitos and a bit rocky. While it may work in a pinch, we opted to continue for a better site. Across the way was a beautiful campsite site 11 on the Fisher map. This campsite was georgous and would accommodate three tents easily.  A bit secluded and buggy, we opted to move down to the end of Wind Bay in hopes for yet a better site.

This choice paid off. Wind Bay offered a nice campsite for three tents, easy access, less Mosquitos and positioned us for a nice day trip the following day.

Dinner: spaghetti-pepperoni-chicken with rehydrated sauce.

 



Day 5 of 7


Wednesday, August 01, 2012 Two nights at our campsite on Wind Bay allowed for a play day today.

Leaving camp at 10 am we headed through the bog to Indiana Lake. This was the clearest and most beautiful lake of the trip. Two campsites in this lake... Less Mosquitos and a great breeze... A must visit if you are lucky enough to get a site.

From Indiana Lake over a 100 rod portage to Good Lake., 150 rods into Hula, 40 rods without canoes for a toe dip into Wood Lake.

Reversing the trip back to camp we stopped on Hula Lake island for a bean burrito-chicken-rice lunch and a hula dance or two.

We returned to camp around 5 pm to a nice swim and rehydrated baked ziti dinner.

Later in the evening, just before dark, we fixed dinner for a few new friends in search of a late campsite.

 



Day 6 of 7


Thursday, August 02, 2012 One last move from Wind Bay campsite over a 130 rod portage into Wind Lake. Most of these campsites were occupied and we ended up in the far southwest corner. This campsite was a pleasant surprise. The Mosquitos were scarce due to a swarm of dragon flies..what a welcoming site.  Our landing was a slide of rock formation that created great entertainment during our evening swim (surfing). This campsite's more isolated area would be perfect for a group of first time boy scouts. 

Once camp was set up we paddled to Washte Lake and took the unmarked portage to Withness Lake. Watch out for the leeches in these smaller lakes.

Dinner: lentil soup as a starter.  Calzones for dinner (Italian flat bread-pepperoni-chicken-pizza sauce-onion-bacon bites-Parmesan cheese)... One even had tuna.

This night brought our first still water...and the sunset mirrored on the water. What a beautiful last night.

 



Day 7 of 7


Friday, August 03, 2012

Breaking camp we left Wind lake taking the 175 rod portage to Moose Lake, paddling straight up to the outfitters dock.

 


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