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RaisedByBears99
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05/06/2012 07:53AM
Some time this spring, I made the mistake of telling my father we should head north for some fishing this summer.

First off, something about dad. He's got to be moving. He's one of those incredible people who can do anything with nothing, and always has - much longer and harder and faster than anyone else. Just watching him used to wear me out.

He was an industrial arts teacher. When he retired, so did about half the indutrial arts courses at the school where he taught (in spite of the fact there were three other IA teachers).

Summers we used to build garages, decks, storage buildings, etc. He also worked at a camp. Then he and my mother started going round the world building churches. They built in Philipines, Germany, Israel, Scotland, Nepal, Columbia, Venezuala, Ecudor.

Then he built the church they attend. It would be five old guys on the ground - handing boards up to dad - who was running back and forth on the rafters. He was in such a hurry, he once fell off the peak. He didn't want to hit the ground, so he stuck out his arms behind him and grabbed the truss as he went by and scrambled back onto the structure. He broke two ribs, but didn't mention it for a month. He was 75

About five years ago, he started having joint issues and had a total hip. We have done a couple of trips a year, but he isn't near as strong as he used to be. This year he had the other hip done. He's 87 and, and all this sitting around has him bored silly. He's been quietly gathering gear for "going north." We just had his brithday. A week before his birthday, he let me know he wanted a thermal mattress "for camping."

"I'm getting old, you know," he said, "and it's getting harder to sleep on the ground."

"Me and my big mouth," was my thought.

Please help me with a list of the easiest weekend BWCA trips.


 
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Savage Voyageur
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05/06/2012 08:37AM
Sounds like a great problem to have. My Dad died a few years ago and I wish I could have taken him. We did a lot of hunting and fishing but never a canoe trip. I would do the Sag- Seagull loop of go out of Sawbill. Have fun with your Dad.
alpine525
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05/06/2012 09:07AM
Lake One entry -paddle to Lake Two or Lake Three. There are two VERY short and flat portages. If you camp on Lake One, there is no portaging involved at all.

brp
senior member (96)senior membersenior member
 
05/06/2012 09:07AM
My dad is 58 and won't go. You're dad is awesome. I picture him like Fred Schnabel on Gold Rush Alaska.

It is not a great route, but really easy with zero portages or maybe a few small carry-overs, Hog Creek EP 36. Take that down to Parent Lake, which is decent size. Then you would have to paddle back out Hog Creek.
Jackfish
Moderator
 
05/06/2012 11:22AM
quote brp: "Your dad is awesome."
That's for sure! I hope you find a good route. Your dad deserves another trip. :)
Woods Walker
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05/06/2012 11:39AM
quote Savage Voyageur: "Sounds like a great problem to have. My Dad died a few years ago and I wish I could have taken him. We did a lot of hunting and fishing but never a canoe trip. I would do the Sag- Seagull loop of go out of Sawbill. Have fun with your Dad. "

Sounds like a carbon copy of me, Sawbill is a great area & portages can be long, but not hard in that area.

As mentioned above Lake One is or was great too, see's more traffic, but is a question mark since the fire last year.

Hope you have a great trip, my dad was in rough shape for his last 15 years & died at 72 in 2002.... I used to do everything I could to keep him comfortable in the woods on hunting trips. Might be where I get my pack mule mentality. Enjoy every moment you have, you never know when it will be the last chance.
Curmudgeon
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05/06/2012 12:01PM
Moss Lake just south of Duncan lake. Looks and feels like the BWCA, but it's one lake outside of the BWCA. No permit, no BWCA rules.

Hire Hungry Jack Lodge to haul your gear down the one portage, grab the one site across the lake (it's a beauty), have the whole lake to yourself along with several thousand small - medium sized stocked lake trout.

If you want to do some day trips, take the short portage to Duncan which opens up a world of possibilities.
RaisedByBears99
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05/06/2012 03:40PM
quote Curmudgeon: "Moss Lake just south of Duncan lake. Looks and feels like the BWCA, but it's one lake outside of the BWCA. No permit, no BWCA rules.

Hire Hungry Jack Lodge to haul your gear down the one portage, grab the one site across the lake (it's a beauty), have the whole lake to yourself along with several thousand small - medium sized stocked lake trout.

If you want to do some day trips, take the short portage to Duncan which opens up a world of possibilities."

That sounds like the one. I often ice fish there in winter. That would be a good site.

Thanks for the other offerings as well.

overthehill
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05/06/2012 05:03PM
Moose Lake (we used Canadian Border Outfitters) with a lakeside room,bait,breakfast, and a 20 minute tow to Splash Lake. After a very short portage, it's only a few hundred yard paddle to a campsite. Ensign is paddlable just to the east. We did this one year when my back went out. We actually camped on SE Ensign,Ashigan,Vera, but after a windy day, used the camp on Splash to stage out for the tow. 5 minute paddle to portage, then maybe 15 rods to pick-up on Moose/Newfound.
Curmudgeon
distinguished member (307)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/06/2012 06:28PM
quote RaisedByBears99: "quote Curmudgeon: "Moss Lake just south of Duncan lake. Looks and feels like the BWCA, but it's one lake outside of the BWCA. No permit, no BWCA rules.

Hire Hungry Jack Lodge to haul your gear down the one portage, grab the one site across the lake (it's a beauty), have the whole lake to yourself along with several thousand small - medium sized stocked lake trout.

If you want to do some day trips, take the short portage to Duncan which opens up a world of possibilities."

That sounds like the one. I often ice fish there in winter. That would be a good site.

Thanks for the other offerings as well."

The one site on the lake is nice and gets a great sunset.

msray53
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05/06/2012 07:10PM
Please report back after you and your dad take the trip. This obviously means a lot to him. I'd be very interested how it went. My dad took me to the BW the first time when I was 12. Now it's 46 years later. His heart is willing but the body is no longer capable.
Curmudgeon
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05/06/2012 08:21PM
Hungry Jack Lodge could literally haul a person right down to the waters edge on Moss Lake.
kayakrookie1
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05/06/2012 10:15PM
quote brp: "My dad is 58 and won't go. You're dad is awesome. I picture him like Fred Schnabel on Gold Rush Alaska.

It is not a great route, but really easy with zero portages or maybe a few small carry-overs, Hog Creek EP 36. Take that down to Parent Lake, which is decent size. Then you would have to paddle back out Hog Creek."

That's John Schnabel. But yea, that guy is awesome. You can tell when watching Gold Rush that he did an excellent job of passing on good work values and wisdom to his son and grandson.

Dennisal
distinguished member(1130)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/07/2012 09:59AM
RBB99... interested in knowing how your dad did in the BW after the hip replacements. I am 62 years old and looking at a possible right hip replacement. If having the surgery means missing going to the BW again, then surgery might not be an option for me.
Thanks.
jdevries
distinguished member(1465)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/07/2012 11:10AM
Lake One entry but then west down the Kawishiwi. Easy portages unless you try to do the 'Triangle', good fishing, great scenery.

Jim
05/07/2012 11:37AM
quote Dennisal: "RBB99... interested in knowing how your dad did in the BW after the hip replacements. I am 62 years old and looking at a possible right hip replacement. If having the surgery means missing going to the BW again, then surgery might not be an option for me.
Thanks."


There is thread on quiet journey about hip replacements, and one of the members posted a rather lengthy description of how his life (and his Quetico trips) changed for the better after his hip replacements. Might be worth checking out.

It's in the "Back to Civilization" forum, and the title is "New hip and canoeing".
Canoodler
distinguished member (289)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/07/2012 08:06PM
quote Woods Walker: "quote Savage Voyageur: "Sounds like a great problem to have. My Dad died a few years ago and I wish I could have taken him. We did a lot of hunting and fishing but never a canoe trip. I would do the Sag- Seagull loop of go out of Sawbill. Have fun with your Dad. "


Sounds like a carbon copy of me, Sawbill is a great area & portages can be long, but not hard in that area.


As mentioned above Lake One is or was great too, see's more traffic, but is a question mark since the fire last year.


Hope you have a great trip, my dad was in rough shape for his last 15 years & died at 72 in 2002.... I used to do everything I could to keep him comfortable in the woods on hunting trips. Might be where I get my pack mule mentality. Enjoy every moment you have, you never know when it will be the last chance."


Lakes One to Four were largely unhit by the Pagami Creek fire but Hudson and Insula were pretty much charred. I cannot add any other ideas to what was already mentioned.
LoneWolf
distinguished member(1501)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/07/2012 10:53PM
East Bearskin to Alder to Canoe. Short portages. Basecamp on Canoe. Then if your dad is up for a hiking without canoes and heavy packs, hike up to Johnson Falls. I'm not sure what your dad can handle because it is hilly, but he sounds pretty tough.

Also, if you go the Duncan Lake area mentioned above make sure to stop and see the staircase portage and falls.
RaisedByBears99
distinguished member(524)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
05/08/2012 01:03AM
quote LoneWolf: "East Bearskin to Alder to Canoe. Short portages. Basecamp on Canoe. Then if your dad is up for a hiking without canoes and heavy packs, hike up to Johnson Falls. I'm not sure what your dad can handle because it is hilly, but he sounds pretty tough.


Also, if you go the Duncan Lake area mentioned above make sure to stop and see the staircase portage and falls."


Been there many times. He's not up to the staircase - or Caribou Rock.
Curmudgeonn
Guest Paddler
 
05/08/2012 02:04PM
quote RaisedByBears99: "quote LoneWolf: "East Bearskin to Alder to Canoe. Short portages. Basecamp on Canoe. Then if your dad is up for a hiking without canoes and heavy packs, hike up to Johnson Falls. I'm not sure what your dad can handle because it is hilly, but he sounds pretty tough.



Also, if you go the Duncan Lake area mentioned above make sure to stop and see the staircase portage and falls."



Been there many times. He's not up to the staircase - or Caribou Rock."


This makes the Moss Lake approach even better. On Duncan Lake you are already at the top of the staircase. A short walk down the portage brings you to the panorama or Rose Lake, it's palisades, Arrow Lake palisades, and the depths of the Canadian forests.

One can spend hours up there relaxing and taking in the sites.
 
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