Looks like an extensive loop. Did you pick up your Quetico permit en route at the Prairie Portage station? Presumably you just needed day-use permits for the BWCA portion on each side, but did you have any issues with the border crossings? Did you get a lot of solitude on this loop?
>Did you pick up your Quetico permit en route at the Prairie Portage station?
Yes; made the reservation online in early Spring, and paid for camping permits/whatever at PP (over $1000 for the whole group).
>Presumably you just needed day-use permits for the BWCA portion on each side, but did you have any issues with the border crossings?
Yep, day-use permits for BWCA. We actually got stopped in Newfound Lake by a BWCA ranger to check our permit. He noted that we needed one for the return trip too, which I neglected, and he let me fill one out right there in the middle of the lake. Nice guy.
Per usual, didn't run into any Canadian Customs & Border Control folks. Painless stop at Customs & Border Control in Ely. Probably took all of 120 seconds for 8 passports to be scanned.
>Did you get a lot of solitude on this loop? Not as much as I'd of liked - "go figure" this time of year. We saw people every day but usually only one other group per day when paddling or looking for a campsite.
Yep, but I'm not inclined to post any. I just like keeping photos private.
>can't imagine the congestion at the landings >Is everybody in the group experienced?
We had a good crew with the majority being experienced. Before we launched, I explained and demonstrated the proper, efficient way to wet portage, and everybody took instruction well. We had 4 packs in total, and thus, each person either carried a pack or a canoe over each portage (single portage). Our crew operated like a finely-tuned Italian motorcycle by the end of the trip. With little exaggeration, each canoe team probably averaged around 100 seconds from the bowman's foot down at a portage til the canoe carrier was following the pack carrier on the portage.