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      Going to Insula and have never been there.     
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Rbell514
 
05/30/2018 05:14PM
Can anyone gives me any info on lake Insula? My buddy and I are going June 16th and can't find any info.
 
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Savage Voyageur
distinguished member(13131)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
05/30/2018 05:36PM
Top of the page is the search button. There is 10 pages just on Insula there. Also there are many trip reports to read about Insula.

There also is a BWJ article about every campsite on Insula. Just write to Boundary Waters Journal and ask for the article, or issue.

Be more specific on your questions. Are you looking for fishing intel, campsite reviews? I was there a few years ago. You can reach it in one day. There was a fire in this area so you might want to read up on that. I have read that trees and bushes have grown back .
05/30/2018 09:03PM
Never been there, but here's a link to what info's available at the "maps and entry points" tab at the top. The red dots are campsites - click on them for any available information. Same with the portages.

Click "planning tab" above, "trip reports" on drop-down menu, type in entry point to have them sorted that way.
05/30/2018 11:23PM
Pretty easy to reach in a day from Lake 1 with an early entry. South 1/3 of lake has some pretty good fire damage. Most campsites are open but many lack trees. Sites in the northern 1/3 of the lake are extremely popular and hard to come by. Walleye fishing is very good with all the available structure. Plenty of sites have sandy beaches if that's your deal.
mc2mens
distinguished member(4162)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
05/31/2018 06:48AM
Been there twice, about 10 years ago. It took us about 5-6 hours to get to our campsites each time, located in the middle of the lake. This was prior to the fire that burned the south end of the lake. My recollection was that it was a beautiful lake with lots of islands. Great fishing. Caught more walleye on this lake than any other. Great walleye structure and the Kawishiwi river runs through the lake.
bhouse46
distinguished member(2502)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/31/2018 07:29AM
You will be entering on a Saturday in what is a very popular area so expect the area to be busy with others seeking the same campsites and fishing holes. At one time this route was called the aluminum highway because it is so busy and is known for submerged rocks that collected a fair share of aluminum as canoes scrapped over. A check with the reservation system reveals all permits are filled for at least four days prior and after your entry date.

If it were my trip I would be on the water at the crack of dawn hoping to be on Insula by lunch time and hoping to find someone breaking camp and heading out. Camp sites will be a premium so get what you can and early. If you end up on the southern sites with limited trees remember to take a good tarp, the sun can be a real killer.

It is a beautiful area with lots of day trip options so enjoy yourselves.
Rbell514
 
05/31/2018 07:52AM
Thank you for the advice. How long would you say it takes to get from lake one entry to Insula? Also regarding the lack of trees.... We're banking on trees because we use a 3 point tree tent. Do you know if the north side or the middle ialand have a decent amount of trees?
mc2mens
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05/31/2018 12:11PM
Rbell514: "Thank you for the advice. How long would you say it takes to get from lake one entry to Insula? Also regarding the lack of trees.... We're banking on trees because we use a 3 point tree tent. Do you know if the north side or the middle ialand have a decent amount of trees? "

I would count on 5-6 hours to get there. If you're banking on trees, you might consider another destination. I suspect the campsites on the north side of the lake (that still have trees) will fill up first. Below is an image of Insula from Google Earth. You can clearly see the south end of Insula has been subject to a burn from the Pagami Creek fire (2011).



nooneuno
distinguished member (355)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/02/2018 08:33AM
Rbell514: "Thank you for the advice. How long would you say it takes to get from lake one entry to Insula? Also regarding the lack of trees.... We're banking on trees because we use a 3 point tree tent. Do you know if the north side or the middle ialand have a decent amount of trees? "

For a group that does not paddle often, double portaging, I would count on 6 to 7 hours from the Lake One entry, keep in mind a head wind on the return trip is often the case. I stayed there the year after the fire and went thru that area again two days ago and the burn area regrowth is progressing quickly with many pines 4 to 5 feet tall already. Relatively few of the sites were actually closed because of the fire as the forest service did a great job saving them, even in the burn area there are sites you can stay on and barely realize the fire went thru.

I don't know what Island site your specifically referring to as there are many sites on islands in Insula, if you mean Williamson Island it was untouched by the fire and is heavily treed with cedars and even old growth pines.





Williamson cedar tree



Portage from Hudson looking toward Insula and the burn area
Aldy1
senior member (62)senior membersenior member
 
06/05/2018 04:01PM
I just got back from camping on Insula. We camped in the north end of the lake and it took us 6.5 hours, single portaging. I would absolutely recommend camping past the burn area. The north end has some great (but popular) campsites. We didn't get our desired site, but the one we got (site #1326) was a nice site with great fishing. Most the portages are short and fairly easy. The last 95 rod portage is a doozy (steep up and down), but the path is nice and view at the top makes it pretty neat. I would also recommend single portaging, but I know some aren't able to swing it. Navigating to Insula was a fun challenge (for a first timer to that lake) due to all the islands.

Just remember, 'Fight through burn'. It'll be worth it.
heavylunch
member (45)member
 
06/08/2018 12:11PM
I don't know how much experience you all have navigating but Insula is pretty easy to get turned around on if you are a novice. Pay attention to your maps and knowing how to use a compass would be a great idea.
Aldy1
senior member (62)senior membersenior member
 
06/11/2018 02:58PM
I would agree with heavylunch. We had to check our map often. Campsites and islands helped track where we were - but there were some islands near the end of lake 4 that had us turning too soon. I believe they were unmarked on the map and that messed us up.

A compass will really help you on this trip,
bmaines
distinguished member (291)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/12/2018 11:14AM
Just got back Sunday night from a 5 day basecamp on Insula. One tandem and a solo boat, double portaged because I really like bacon and beer and it took exactly 4 hrs to get to Insula. Granted it was another 40 mins to find a nice site. We weren't killing ourselves getting there but did have a nice tailwind almost the entire trip in. Walleyes were suicidal. Any windblown shoreline with a steep break was on fire. Burned through a pound of leeches in 3 days before switching over to plastics. More 15-18"ers than you'd care to catch with 5 between 24 and 28". If things remain fairly stable, you should have no problem pounding the fish. Found out the hard way that giant snappers will still munch on some of your fish when you have them 40' off shore on a stringer 8' deep. Good luck.
Aldy1
senior member (62)senior membersenior member
 
06/13/2018 01:19PM
How did you get to Insula in 4 hours double portaging?? I am impressed.
bmaines
distinguished member (291)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/14/2018 09:17AM
Paddled down Lake One-went across the 2 short portages-paddled across Lakes 2,3 and 4, took the three short portages into Hudson- paddled across Hudson and took the slightly longer portage- placed our canoes in the water on the Insula side of the slightly longer portage.

I'm very efficient at portages. Even with the crowds at the early ones, we were able to slide around gear laying everywhere and pass a lot of groups. That and I'm a really strong paddler. And I'm modest.

The tailwind we had the entire time probably didn't hurt much either.
 
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