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   Winter Camping and Activities
      First Solo Winter Trip     

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02/12/2017 07:49PM
Looking to do a 3 night winter trip in the next 2 weeks. Got the hot tent, stove and just built a pulk sled.

My idea is to pull in the Kek Trail from the Gunfint trail head 3 miles to Bingshick Lake.

Any thoughts on this route? My other option I'm thinking is Brandt or Tuscarora Lake, by staring on Round, but I'm leaning to the Kek Trail idea.
 
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TuscaroraBorealis
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02/12/2017 08:09PM
Bingschick is in a burn area, so you will be more exposed to the elements. Of course the tradeoff is that there's plenty of premo firewood close at hand. Personally, I'd pick option A (Bingschick) because, imho, it will be the road less traveled. It's always such an awesome experience seeing a pristine snow blanketed lake after a (relatively ) long hike in.

BTW
Not sure of your schedule... but, we're gonna be up there this upcoming weekend. Entering Saturday - exiting Tuesday. We might stop in at Trail Center for breakfast, and almost certainly will for lunch on Tuesday.

Anyways, have a great trip whatever you decide.
02/12/2017 08:11PM
i think your odds of seeing more wildlife would be on the Kek. however, trail is clearly packed down from round to missing link, and from round to edith and probably beyond.

i vote Kek.
02/12/2017 08:30PM
Hey Tusc.

I see you have camped on Bingshick before. Is that campsite there flat enough and the tent pack big enough for a 9 x 11.5 hot tent? I have the snowtrekker basecamp 3 man. Yea, a bit big for a solo, but it is what I got!

Thanks for the opinions.

I've hiked the Kek twice now in the winter to the Centennial Junction, so I'm familiar with the 1st 1/3 of the trail. It looks like it continues to be a relatively flat hike the rest of the way to Bingshick.
02/12/2017 08:34PM
And yes the availability of primo fire wood was for sure one of the factors I've considered.
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/13/2017 06:59PM








This photo was taken in the spring of 2015.

Obviously it lacks mature trees but, it's a pretty decent site. The best tent pad is straight back from the fire grate (in this photo) & it should work nicely for your needs. There are a couple other decent spots - just to the right and right in the foreground but, both a quite close to the firegrate. Being so close might not be as big of an issue in the winter????

If you're fishing? It drops off pretty good right from shore, & I've had success between this site and the rock knob seen in the left of this photo. I've heard stories that at one time there were the remains of an old cabin somewhere near the creek/portage to Flying Lake. I've never been able to locate it. Fire might've finished off what was left??? I digress.....probably doesn't make a lot of sense to look for it in the winter.

Do you plan on visiting any of the other nearby lakes?
02/14/2017 03:43PM
Thanks Tusc.

I don't plan to fish for the first trip. Maybe next time. This is just a learning experience.

For exploring, I figure I could hike over to Honker Lake and/or follow the Kek Trail further west a ways. I've paddled the Chub River from Seahorse to Faye before, so that might be cool to see in winter.

The link shows a slideshow of the pulk sled I made.

Pulk Sled Photos
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/14/2017 04:43PM
Cool beans!

Enjoy the experience.
Jaywalker
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02/14/2017 05:17PM
Fine work on that pulk! I have that same tent and have used it solo; lots of tent, but I do love it! Look forward to hearing how it goes.

It sounds like you are already set on the Kek Trail, which I do not know. I did go in and stay on Brandt several days last year and liked it. Even in some burn areas, you can find a sheltered area behind some black spruce that didn't get torched. I enjoyed day tripping to Bat to fish, and tried bushwhacking to Blue Snow but only got about half way - should have started earlier. Still want to redo that trip.

02/18/2017 07:46PM
Keep an eye on the weather. Hiking on the portages were a treat. The lakes were a bear.
KT
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02/22/2017 06:13PM
Kip, enjoy your trip and be safe! Nothing better than the bwca in the winter.
TuscaroraBorealis
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03/12/2017 09:02AM
So, how did it go Kip???
03/14/2017 03:32PM
oops

03/14/2017 03:32PM
It was fantastic and lots of hard work. I learned how long things take and how much harder it is to trip in the winter. But overall, I really like it and can't wait to go again. I'll post more picture and a report soon.

But here is a bunch of videos from my trip if you are interested.

Bingshick Camp Video
SevenofNine
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03/15/2017 06:22PM
Thanks for sharing Dan. It looks like a really nice setup. Love the site.
Jaywalker
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03/15/2017 10:10PM
Video was great. Nice wood piles! It doesn't look too cold with the snow retreating, but wasn't it nice the first time the tent got fully heated and dried everything out?
pcieluchj
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03/22/2017 03:14PM
Nice looking camp, looks a tad different then summer time. Just one question, why the bear vault?
03/22/2017 03:58PM
Polar BEARS!

Nah, more just to keep the food (like crackers) from getting crushed.
 
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