I'm planning a 7-14 day solo trip mid-late September. Coming from Montana, I was thinking of entering from the north (e.g. Nym), but am open to suggestions. I haven't been to Quetico/BWCA before so I'm trying to figure things out. It seems like northern entries have larger lakes than south, which I'd expect would potentially cause greater wind concerns.
Also, I was wondering about connecting streams having adequate water in September. I'm paddling a Wenonah UL Voyager, which isn't exactly a rock basher, so I'd like to avoid rocks and perhaps unnecessary portages due to poor planning. I'm not looking for trip plans, but insights would be much appreciated.
Added: I don't fish (blasphemous, huh? Might next trip!). Like to move every day--no basecamping. I like to see new country.
Just want to scope out the area. A loop would be fine, or lollipop, etc. Just want to paddle! South or north would work--north access seems easier, maybe fewer people. Smaller lakes sound appealing, though.
I generally try to do a U trip commencing in the west and coming out in the east as the winds are normally sw or nw. Like yourself I am a traveler and the big advantage of Quetico is there are so many alternatives that you can always change your mind depending on conditions. There are a number of outfitters in Atikokan that could either take you in or pick you up if you choose a U. I am starting next Tuesday for 23 days solo and doing a U. Glad to see another westerner is trying the Q.
Am starting my first solo (12 days) in late September as well, but am not looking to travel everyday. Am going to explore and indulge the details this time. There are a lot of good options out of Atikokan, especially if you start at Nym or Stanton Bay. The B chain comes to mind and back out through Jesse and Maria.
So many options!
If we aren't actively working to protect our planet, we are acquiescing to those who don't care about it.
+1 on the B-chain. Gets you into a few smaller lakes. Would suggest Chatterton Falls as one possible destination - a few really good campsites near the bottom of the falls. Could loop back through Deux Riviere. At that time of year, you'll have the area pretty much to yourself. Oh, so many options...
quote mapsguy1955: "Am starting my first solo (12 days) in late September as well, but am not looking to travel everyday. Am going to explore and indulge the details this time. There are a lot of good options out of Atikokan, especially if you start at Nym or Stanton Bay. The B chain comes to mind and back out through Jesse and Maria. So many options!"
this is a great idea. honestly, it doesn't matter where you start, it seems like there is a big lake to cross. try to paddle early morning until the wind picks up, then rest. your days will be shorter so you might want to be all set up in camp by 5 or 6pm anyway.
probably no easy way to avoid rocks, they are everywhere except where there is a sandy beach. perhaps someone could link a past thread about sandy beaches?
another option, more $$$, would be to do a fly-in/paddle-out trip. fly from Saganaga lake (plane would pick you up at the old customs dock ((customs no longer open so you'd need to apply for the RABC now so you have it in time)) and fly over quetico to Beaverhouse lake, then make your way back to Sag. you can also get a towboat ride $ to the old customs dock on the way in, and from Hook island on your way out if you want to avoid paddling on Sag.
it's a long way to travel from Montana so i can see why you'd want to see as much as possible. fishing is over-rated, anyway! :)
There are many different places you can go in the Quetico/BWCA for just a scenic trip. Where's one you may like. Take a boat ride to Bottle Portage from Crane Lake, Anderson Canoe Outfitters is a great place to go through. Go over two Trolley Portages (which are really neat if you haven't done it). Boat will drop you right off at Bottle Portage. There are two places to see near Bottle Portage Rebecca Falls and Curtain Falls. If you head up through McAree Lake you can go take a look at Brewer Rapids. Good luck with planning your trip