BWCA Entry Point, Route, and Trip Report Blog

November 19 2017

Entry Point 55 - Saganaga Lake

Saganaga Lake entry point allows overnight paddle or motor (25 HP max). This entry point is supported by Gunflint Ranger Station near the city of Grand Marais, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 55 miles. No motors (use or possession) west of American Point. Access to Canada (the Crown land and Quetico Park). Large lake with many campsites and easy access. This area was affected by blowdown in 1999.

Number of Permits per Day: 17
Elevation: 1184 feet
Latitude: 48.1716
Longitude: -90.8868
Saganaga Lake - 55

Seagull / Saganaga Cabin Family Adventure

by Navigator
Trip Report

Entry Date: July 14, 2008
Entry Point: Saganaga Lake Only
Number of Days: 6
Group Size: 9

Trip Introduction:
A family adventure in the BWCAW

Day 1 of 6


Let me start off by saying that this trip was memorable in SO many ways! If you haven't taken an opportunity to spend some time in the Northwoods with your families, you are missing an incredible opportunity to bond at such a deeper/better level that only the Northwoods can bring about. My Wife, our four children (18, 16, 13 and 9) My wife's parents and a friend of the family hoped into our two minivans and took on a trip of a lifetime...

Day 1 & Day 2 We had the right trip plan for the trip to Seagull Outfitters (better than the trip home!) We left Kansas City and drove to Des Moines and spent the night with family. Imagine, if you will, 7 people in a minivan with a weeks worth of food and clothing! Enjoyed time spent with my Mom and Brothers sipping ice cold beverages on the deck and watching there faces as their envy of my upcoming trip became clear. The next morning, Monday, we are off to Minneapolis where we had booked hotel rooms near the Mall of America. We spent the day shopping at the mall (my obligation to get my wife to consider a trip fishing for a week) and the kids enjoyed the afternoon at Nickelodeon Universe.

 



Day 2 of 6


 



Day 3 of 6


Day 3

Got up and handled the morning rush hour(s) commute through St. Paul then off to the North Shore Drive. We stopped at the rest area in Duluth overlooking Lake Superior and the city and enjoyed the still morning clear view of the Lake. Got back on the road and heading into Two Harbors and stopped for lunch at the Vanilla Bean Cafe (on good advise of Terry - 24KGold) Had an awesome lunch of Walleye (I made a joke that I better have it there as it may be the only Walleye I get. I must have been prophetic as it turned out to be the only Walleye of the trip ) Then onward up the North Shore Drive. This was the first time along the route for several of our family, so I enjoyed the oohs & awwws along the way. We made the obligatory stops at Gooseberry Falls, Split Rock Lighthouse, Temperance River, and the overlook just before heading into Grand Marais. A short stop in Grand Marais for gas, $4.06 a gallon, then off on the Gunflint Trail. We arrived at Seagull about 5PM to a welcoming of Seagull Staff Members - always ready to help! We checked in, purchased fishing license's and T-shirt then off to Big Sag Cabin. This was our first experience using cabins, our first experience with Seagull Cabins. The kids were thrilled to see the Big Sag cabin and see it had lights and running water and a flush toilet after the horror stories I had painted along the trip. We all settled in to our home away from home for the week at Seagull!

   

 



Day 4 of 6


Day 4 Waking up to the sound of Loons is one of my favorite things in the whole world. The morning of day 4 greeted us to the wilderness with the magical call of the Loon! We had an enjoyable day of boat rides, Eagle and Loon viewing (they were everywhere) a "stocker" Mallard duck that followed our boat so closely, we could almost touch it, and hours of fishing. I am said to say the fishing for us was slow. We were told that they fishing had fallen off a bit the week we were there - maybe because it was so warm, but we had little action - no Walleyes and oddly enough, not even a Smallmouth. We caught a few smaller Northerns and...a mystery fish. I have included a photo of it here for the readers to identify. I had never caught one of this species before and had to ask our Hosts to identify it for me. What do you say it is???

  

 



Day 5 of 6


Day 5 Another beautiful day on Saganaga! Woke up to bright, sunny skies, clam water and warm temps. We toured the lake visiting both Hook Island and Saganaga Falls. Since the water was calm, it made for a good day of traveling and seeing the lake. It was a different experience seeing all the places we had to canoe to on previous trips and now being able to just hop into a motor boat and see them all. It makes Lake Saganaga seem a bit smaller, but only a bit! We experienced seeing some great Eagles which just seemed to be everywhere, and even took some time to walk on the water! Later that evening, we took a drive into the Red Paddle Bistro on Gunflint Lake for dinner. If you haven't been there, I would highly recommend this establishment for an evening meal!

 

 



Day 6 of 6


Day 6 Already our last day had arrived! Hard to believe that the time moved so quickly in the Northwoods. It always seems like the trip is over almost as quickly as it begins in the area! This day was full with fishing (attempts) and canoeing adventures. My Mother-In-Law tried her first smore (hard to believe) and the family enjoyed the "dump cake" I learned to make for dessert in our dutch oven. We stopped by and thanked Deb and the Seagull Staff for providing us with a great experience in the cabin! We were treated to a great sunset to cap off the week and spent the evening gathering and packing for our long trip home.

Day 7 Our return trip day had arrived. We greeted the morning with a fantastic sunrise on another clear, clam day and began our drive down the trail. Not far from the Seagull offices is the Moose Pond. This morning it lived up to its name as we watched a mother moose and her two calves take a morning swim across the pond. We stopped for the photo opportunity, then reluctantly, stepped back into our vehicles and began our 14 hour sojourn home.

The cabin experience offered at Seagull Outfitters is an awesome way to see the BWCAW and have all the conveniences of home (including satellite TV!) My youngest daughter was more interested sometimes in seeing the latest episode of SpongeBob Squarepants than watching a great sunset, but as the week ticked along, we were able to pry her away! This is a fantastic trip for young families and even my In-Laws enjoyed the creature comforts of the cabin that a tent experience lacks! As I recount the time we spent together, I'm certain that in many ways This experience will be among our families favorite vacation memories. I look forward to visiting the cabins of Seagull Outfitters again - who knows...maybe it will convert the paddler in me...NOT a chance!   

 


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