Chat Rooms (0 Chatting)  |  Search  |   Login/Join
* For the benefit of the community, commercial posting is not allowed.
Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Winter Camping and Activities
      Tent, ideas and thoughts     
 Forum Sponsor

Author

Text

GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 09:10AM
So, I'm not going to get to the bwca this fall like I hoped. To much home upkeep to justify a week away, so my thoughts are turning to the winter camping symposium and my hoped for February winter camping trip.

I bought a canvas pyramid tent last year which I used for my 1st winter camping experience last year. This tent is excellent to be in, but has one big problem. The set up weights 50lbs (it has a nice tub style Vinyl floor)and the stove is 20ish. I about killed myself getting this and the rest of my gear to my planned spot. So not wanting to invest in the lighter canvas tents this year, I'm trying to come up with ideas that will work for me. One things is I can cut down on the amount of other gear that I brought last year and didn't need/use(about 25lbs). I want to get a black river plastic sled(I used a 40 year old toboggan). Also the reason for this post is I want to go to a spot were it is semi close to the entry point, so I can take 2 trips if needed. I also want easy terrain for any portage trail. Of course solitude and fishing are my main thoughts for the spot. Having said all that I'm thinking of Gabbrow Lake. Does any one have experience there of other spots that might work for me?
Thank you,
Bill
 
Reply    Reply with Quote    Print Top Bottom Previous Next
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 09:27AM
10/01/2013 10:12AM
Hey Bill, I followed your adventures with a great deal of interest last winter and realize that you struggled with the weight.

In regards to your desire for shorter pulls, why don't you consider a different wilderness area. I love the BWCA but it's not your only choice for winter solitude.

Check out the Sylvania Wilderness Area near Watersmeet, Michigan. It's a couple of hundred miles closer to your home and would give you what you want, ie solitude, fishing and a shorter pull.

Another spot that would meet your needs is Sawmill Lake Campground in Washburn County, Wisconsin. It's adjacent to a small wilderness canoe area of small lakes, short portages ,etc. It's also a couple of hundred miles closer to you. The Winter Camping Rendevous is held there every February.

Check them out on the internet.
PINETREE
distinguished member(13035)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
10/01/2013 01:49PM
Not being in the Mountains,I have for 30 years done real well with my 3 season timberline or other 3 season tents as long as your cold camping.
One trip and I have traveled as much as 60 miles one time zig zagging thru the BWCA.
I am sure that once a year mega blizzard you would wish you had a 4 season tent.
Doughboy12
distinguished member(2343)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 01:54PM
THIS is the sled you want...I bought 6 last year and sold all but 2. They are the BEST sled you can pull for the money.
As for the trip...I hate to give it away but Sawbill is easy. I can't help you on the fishing but have to assume others can.
Oh, and I 3 season it...no need to trick your body into thinking it is warm out.
OldFingers57
distinguished member(5409)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
10/01/2013 03:24PM
+1 on that sled. I have had one for a couple of years now after modifying it. It works great. I added the poles and some straps and aluminum wings on the bottom to help it track straighter and for the tail to not swing out.
Merlin
distinguished member (433)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 05:30PM
I'm familiar with that tent. If it's a dedicated winter tent consider cutting out the floor. Leave a perimeter of the vinyl to act as a sod cloth. It will save a bunch of space and weight.
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 09:16PM
Hi AwBrown,

Thanks for this info, I love getting new ideas. I would have never known about these. I will be putting these in my list of possibilities. a visit to these on spring/fall trips is a must as well.

Thanks for sharing!
Bill
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 09:21PM
quote PINETREE: "Not being in the Mountains,I have for 30 years done real well with my 3 season timberline or other 3 season tents as long as your cold camping.
One trip and I have traveled as much as 60 miles one time zig zagging thru the BWCA.
I am sure that once a year mega blizzard you would wish you had a 4 season tent."


I just bought a -20 bag and a mega mat, so I'm thinking I want to try this cold camping style as well. Would defiantly be lighter. Do you fish on these trips? Do you bring an ice auger or have you or anyone tried ice chisels or saws?
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/01/2013 09:37PM
Catfish wanted me to cut out the bottom too last year,and take out the windows. What would I put under my mega mat to protect it from ice water and snow? That thing cost me more than the tent.
PINETREE
distinguished member(13035)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
10/02/2013 07:31AM
quote GreatBigCubsFan: "quote PINETREE: "Not being in the Mountains,I have for 30 years done real well with my 3 season timberline or other 3 season tents as long as your cold camping.
One trip and I have traveled as much as 60 miles one time zig zagging thru the BWCA.
I am sure that once a year mega blizzard you would wish you had a 4 season tent."



I just bought a -20 bag and a mega mat, so I'm thinking I want to try this cold camping style as well. Would defiantly be lighter. Do you fish on these trips? Do you bring an ice auger or have you or anyone tried ice chisels or saws?"


Yes I definitely do fish,I am big on lake trout fishing. I use a normark augar or the top of the the line is a Nils ice augar. Your fishing gear will add about 10 pounds.

A lot of people just ski and snowshoe camp tho.

I think if your new to winter camping just experiment not to far off the road. Winter camping is a activity you learn a lot of little helpful tricks over the years.
Merlin
distinguished member (433)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/02/2013 06:51PM
quote GreatBigCubsFan: "Catfish wanted me to cut out the bottom too last year,and take out the windows. What would I put under my mega mat to protect it from ice water and snow? That thing cost me more than the tent."

We lay down a piece of typar on the end opposite the stove as our sleeping area.
10/02/2013 07:31PM
quote GreatBigCubsFan: "Hi AwBrown,


Thanks for this info, I love getting new ideas. I would have never known about these. I will be putting these in my list of possibilities. a visit to these on spring/fall trips is a must as well.


Thanks for sharing!
Bill"


You're more then welcome Bill. For your information and anyone else interested, the Winter Camping Rendezvous at Sawmill Lake this winter is January 31-February 2, 2014. If you could attend, you will meet a lot of knowledgeable and friendly winter campers. You would learn a lot and everyone is very friendly. Cost is $10 which goes to the plowing of the road.

If curious, there are a couple of videos on YouTube featuring this event, see the link below. There is a Part 2 also.

Hopefully we will see you at the Winter Camping Symposium later this month.

Sawmill Park Winter Rendezvous
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/16/2013 06:12PM
I want to add to the wish list, that I go to a trout lake!
tonyyarusso
distinguished member(1392)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/16/2013 06:26PM
quote GreatBigCubsFan: "Do you bring an ice auger or have you or anyone tried ice chisels or saws?"
I watched a YouTube video of someone doing it with an ice chisel. Then I brought an auger. :)
tonyyarusso
distinguished member(1392)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/16/2013 06:27PM
It's reasonably easy to get into Trout Lake on the west end of the BWCA. If the ice is thick enough you can just drive across Vermilion and park by the truck portage, which is a pretty easy carry over, then just find a spot you like on the lake and plop down. If you can't drive on Vermilion it's a lot less accessible though, and since you're so close to that you'll still be able to hear snowmobiles in the distance if that bothers you.
catfish72
distinguished member (192)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/17/2013 11:40PM
hey gbcf, I have not been on here in a while and was getting the itch for winter camping and encountered your posts. I as well took great interest in your first trip and greatly admired your willingness and determination. the sled mentioned before I would also recommend. I used one for a few years. though when I started hot tenting I found it to be to small for all my gear. At that point I bought another one and cut the front off one and the back off the other and riveted them together. That actually worked quite well! the over lap worked good as a back slide brake, though it was not as flexible as a toboggan. I think my sled ended up being around 8.5 feet. It held all the gear I needed with a pretty low gravity center, witch I see as just as important to consider as weight. So that is something to keep in mind. As far as that tent of your goes, It looks like a great tent for winter use I would keep it! ( I do own one almost like it ) the modifications I mentioned I think may have been misunderstood. light weight poles would make a huge difference and the floor... well if its vinyl, adds a lot of weight and bulk. My current tent is floorless thought I use a removable floor in it to keep me protected from the ice and snow.Its a coated nylon tarp,1/3 the weight and is not slippery. Anyway I have no idea when you are planning your winter trip, but if you are planning on heading to the bwcaw I have some good options for you depending in the time of winter you are planning on going? Also I +1 the Michigan idea! it's super beautiful and much of it is pretty remote. let us know when you are planning your trip!
SevenofNine
distinguished member(2301)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/18/2013 09:55AM
quote Merlin: "I'm familiar with that tent. If it's a dedicated winter tent consider cutting out the floor. Leave a perimeter of the vinyl to act as a sod cloth. It will save a bunch of space and weight."

Agreed and you should consider leaving the tent frame at home. Set your tent up in the trees and use the trees with cordage to rig your tent.
mnpat1
Guest Paddler
 
10/18/2013 11:11PM
quote Doughboy12: " THIS is the sled you want...I bought 6 last year and sold all but 2. They are the BEST sled you can pull for the money.
"


This is a good sled but the front end is to steep and causes it to plow through fresh or lose snow. Its also narrower and tippier than other sleds. Narrow can be good and bad but definately not a sled for medium to large loads.

I prefer the emsco beast which is still available in local stores. Trim the outside edge for more clearance and you set.

PINETREE
distinguished member(13035)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
10/19/2013 07:30AM
Esmco sled is what I have,use to buy them for under $20.00,now still reasonable around $34.00.
Doughboy12
distinguished member(2343)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/19/2013 04:37PM
quote mnpat1: "quote Doughboy12: " THIS is the sled you want...I bought 6 last year and sold all but 2. They are the BEST sled you can pull for the money.
"



This is a good sled but the front end is to steep and causes it to plow through fresh or lose snow. Its also narrower and tippier than other sleds. Narrow can be good and bad but definately not a sled for medium to large loads.


I prefer the emsco beast which is still available in local stores. Trim the outside edge for more clearance and you set.


"

Never had a problem as I only snowshoe so that removes the plowing effect for the most part...plus I know how to pack it. Center the weight 3/4 of the way back...problem solved.
Narrow means less drag, less drag means less effort...nuf said.

I had the beast while I waited for my expedition to come in...first tree stump it hit shattered the front. Got my money back. I did like the higher sides on it but wasn't really wanting to risk having to carry out all my gear because my sled broke apart on a downhill. It is funny how they would make a snow sled out of plastic that gets brittle when cold.
Mnpat
distinguished member (114)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/20/2013 03:35PM
quote Doughboy12: "quote mnpat1: "quote Doughboy12: " THIS is the sled you want...I bought 6 last year and sold all but 2. They are the BEST sled you can pull for the money.
"




This is a good sled but the front end is to steep and causes it to plow through fresh or lose snow. Its also narrower and tippier than other sleds. Narrow can be good and bad but definately not a sled for medium to large loads.



I prefer the emsco beast which is still available in local stores. Trim the outside edge for more clearance and you set.



"

Never had a problem as I only snowshoe so that removes the plowing effect for the most part...plus I know how to pack it. Center the weight 3/4 of the way back...problem solved.
Narrow means less drag, less drag means less effort...nuf said.


I had the beast while I waited for my expedition to come in...first tree stump it hit shattered the front. Got my money back. I did like the higher sides on it but wasn't really wanting to risk having to carry out all my gear because my sled broke apart on a downhill. It is funny how they would make a snow sled out of plastic that gets brittle when cold. "


Both sleds are made from hdpe. Narrow can be better until your sled tips over. At least half the time i am on (my own) hardpacked trail or a dogsled trail, they are never close to flat. With even a moderate load the paris sled is tippy because its narrow and short. I have over 500 miles on a paris sled and over a 1000 on an emsco beast.
no problems with either just that the beast is a better all around sled imo. They both need mods to perform the best its just that i can't mod the front slope of the paris which is way to steep or add the extra foot of length it needs. Also the front lip on the paris sled points down and catches on the fallen trees on the portages. If you ski the beast is a better choice.
GreatBigCubsFan
distinguished member (151)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/20/2013 04:07PM
You guys are giving me some great ideas, the tent is not waterproof around the windows and door. I had it out at yellowstone last month an we got dripped on a lot! So I am willing to replace them with canvas or something else to make my tent lighter. I also like the idea now of cutting the vinyl floor out and sewing in a lighter material. I'm going to the winter camping symposium, in hopes to see the black river toboggan and consider putting in an order.

The tent has one pole in the middle, it is steel. Looking for replacement ideas. I do like the idea of stringing it up in the trees, but so far when I've been at camp sites I haven't found suitable trees to hang it from.
catfish72
distinguished member (192)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/21/2013 01:00AM
http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=kelty+adjustable+tarp+pole&tag=googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=33857516035&hvpos=1t2&hvexid=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=13494813261203447996&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=b&hvdev=c&ref=pd_sl_3j6uod60q5_b kelty adjustable pole
catfish72
distinguished member (192)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/21/2013 01:11AM
2old4U
distinguished member(1655)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/22/2013 12:32PM
May I inquire how you anchor your tent to the ice??
tonyyarusso
distinguished member(1392)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/22/2013 02:22PM
quote 2old4U: "May I inquire how you anchor your tent to the ice?? "
They're heavy, but the Eskimo ice anchors work beautifully.
Mnpat
distinguished member (114)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/22/2013 05:04PM
grk construction screws work great also. A bag of 6" lags weigh less than a couple eskimo screws. Available at lumber yards and fleet farm
10/27/2013 06:26PM
quote 2old4U: "May I inquire how you anchor your tent to the ice?? "

Ice augers

Ice screws
pswith5
distinguished member(3404)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
11/06/2013 10:38AM
Did that really say 58 bucks per screw??
schollmeier
distinguished member(550)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
11/06/2013 12:23PM
Yep ice screws are expensive (like all climbing gear) - I wouldn't buy ice screws unless you also ice climb or have the money and really want to go that route. Regular ice anchors that you find sold with ice fishing stuff work fine.
Campcraft
distinguished member (167)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
11/06/2013 03:14PM
Ring shank pole barn nails. Add an extra loop of rope to the stake loops for when you have to chop out to break camp.

Mike
MikeLawson
 
01/03/2014 11:57PM
I also want to share something that I think this is a good sled but the front end is to steep and causes it to plow through fresh or lose snow. Its also narrower and tipper than other sleds. Narrow can be good and bad but definitely not a sled for medium to large loads. Thanks for sharing.
_________________________________________
Pain in Arch of Foot | Ingrown Toenail
 
Reply    Reply with Quote    Print Top Bottom Previous Next