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      Trip Report - Solo Trip to Raven Lake (Mugwump PMA 8) 2018
 
  Last Visit: 04/17/2024 02:53PM

Entry Point 27 - Snowbank Lake

Snowbank Lake entry point allows overnight paddle or motor (25 HP max). This entry point is supported by Kawishiwi Ranger Station near the city of Ely, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 24 miles. Access is a boat landing or canoe launch at Snowbank Lake. Many trip options for paddlers. This area was affected by blowdown in 1999.

Number of Permits per Day: 8
Elevation: 1191 feet
Latitude: 47.9716
Longitude: -91.4326
Author Message Text
Ausable
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03/24/2019 03:41PM
 
New Trip Report posted by Ausable

Trip Name: Solo Trip to Raven Lake (Mugwump PMA 8) 2018.

Entry Point: 27

Click Here to View Trip Report
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boonie
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03/24/2019 06:27PM
 
Thanks for the report, enjoyed the pictures. Glad things went well and you enjoyed it.
minnmike
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03/24/2019 07:35PM
 
Nice report, thanks for sharing. I have been wanting to get to Raven lake. You have relit the fire.
straighthairedcurly
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03/25/2019 08:10PM
 
Wonderful trip report. As a huge fan of wildflowers, I loved your photo collection and I learned a new one from it. Great to hear some info about the PMA. Thank you for all the lovely details...your writing style really flowed nicely.
muddyfeet
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03/25/2019 08:44PM
 
Good trip, thanks for writing!


I have struggled to try and figure out the Inreach weather forecasts. I think the most reliable information is the wind direction. The rain percentages are baffling, though. For the most part, 0% means it will be dry; and anything 1-100% means it will be pouring rain.

"Everybody needs beauty as well as bread; places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul" -John Muir
anthonyp007
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03/25/2019 10:08PM
 
Great report! You’ve inspired me to adapt my solo route for this coming summer to include a stop in the Raven/Sagus area. It sounds like a must visit area.


Thanks for sharing,


Tony

Tony
TomT
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03/26/2019 05:41AM
 
Real nice report and I loved your pics. Ive been to Raven but it was because I couldn't find the portage to Cap. It was getting late and we found the Raven portage so took it. You described the portages accurately only we sunk in that mucky floating bog landing up to our waists. We ended up spending a night at the landing to Raven which is very wide open. We left the next morning without fishing it but I love the look and remote feeling of that place.


Solos sure are different than with a group. Seeing all the people like you did had me fleeing to Canada for my trips. I got tired of all the crowded landings and portages. Do you have any plans for more soloing? I've found I really like a hybrid trip of sorts where I prearrange a meetup on a designated lake with other solos for a few days. It breaks up the trip real nice that way.




"Life is not about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." --- George Bernard Shaw
Ausable
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03/26/2019 08:53AM
 
Thanks for the kind words, everyone. There are pictures of wildflowers that I did not include in the report because i didn't want to bore people, but if you are curious, they are in my photo gallery for this trip.

I'm glad to learn that the report provides encouragement to visit Sagus and Raven. You can get some real solitude in that section of the BWCA. My initial plan was to go further than Roe through the series of small lakes to the east, but I had to get realistic with my time and energy.

One note of caution about PMA's and Raven Lake in particular (because it is so easy to get to Raven) is that we need to be really scrupulous about LNT. If we leave a fire ring, or don't bury our human waste well away from the lake, or don't pack-out or burn toilet paper, the rather pristine nature of Raven could rapidly deteriorate. I could see that the landing on Raven would easily show the effects of a campfire, but to this point people have been careful to leave no trace.

I think it would be good to be prepared with a collapsible bow saw in case you need to use the northeast campsite on Sagus or clear a newly-felled tree on the Raven portage.

Muddyfeet, you have an an amazing amount of strength and speed. You cover more ground in one day than I care to do in 3 (I read your Namakan River trip report). I agree that the inReach weather predictions are confusing. It was the first year for me to use the device, so there was a learning curve. Generally, when the prediction for rain was about 20%, I learned to assume that the actual probability was well above 50%. However, that general rule was broken my last night on Jordan when the storm went well north of me.

TomT, because I enjoyed this solo trip, I do hope to do more. Thanks for sharing your take on hybrid trips; that would be something I'd probably have to coordinate with members of this board. I can't really justify more than one trip per year to the BWCA, however, and I'd like to get some new people interested in canoeing trips, but soloing does seems to fill a need for me. Last year was only the 2nd year for me in the BWCA, most of my trips being into Canada, so the number of people I saw provided a clearly different experience. I prefer less-crowded trips.
timatkn
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03/29/2019 08:08AM
 
Thanks for the report, used to go to Raven yearly until the about 10 years ago. We always camped at the landing. I really appreciate you posting there was no fire ring or hopefully signs of camp, during our time we and the others worked hard to make sure there was no sign of a camp when we left. Makes me happy others are following the PMA guidelines too. Brings back memories of our mega travel days...we would put in at Snowbank around 10 am and be fishing on Raven early evening... what were we thinking :)




Ausable
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03/29/2019 10:52AM
 
Timatkn, if those pictures are of the portage into Raven 10 years ago, the trail is considerably easier today!
timatkn
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03/29/2019 07:22PM
 
Ausable: "Timatkn, if those pictures are of the portage into Raven 10 years ago, the trail is considerably easier today!"


That almost makes me sad...unless I head back there :)


T
TomT
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03/30/2019 07:01AM
 
I went to Raven in 2009 and there were no blowdowns that I can remember. It was a very pretty but seldom travelled walk in the woods. If I ever go back to the BW I'll definitely concentrate on the PMA's. It's just gotten too crowded for me.




"Life is not about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." --- George Bernard Shaw
timatkn
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03/30/2019 02:21PM
 
Every year I went to Raven the portages were clogged with downed trees. I wonder who cleared them? The FS doesn’t maintain them, technically you aren’t supposed to clear trails in a PMA. As stated earlier I really don’t know how to feel about it...I appreciate the update though and the travels down memory lane.


T
Driftless
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04/01/2019 02:56PM
 
Awesome report and beautiful photos!!!
PaddleAway
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04/02/2019 07:48PM
 
One of the best trip reports I can recall reading, along with the magnificent pictures. Thanks for sharing.


It's been years since we've slogged into a PMA. I miss it.
Paddle4Hike
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05/24/2019 03:05PM
 
Thank you so much for sharing your adventure. The pics and descriptions were wonderful.
I am anxiously anticipating my 3rd solo trip in as many years, and I realized reading your report; that it isn't just the information I appreciate gleaning from a trip report, but that I get to live not just my trips but other's amazing adventures vicariously. It helps fill the void while waiting for my time to arrive.


I have travelled much of the ground you described and enjoyed re-visiting it through your eyes.


This year's trip I planned to enter at Snowbank, go through Sagus, continuing East and South to the Kawishiwi before coming North back into Thomas and out to Snowbank. After reading your report, I am considering a revision that includes a side trip into Raven.


Thanks for sharing and the additional inspiration!

It's all good
Ausable
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05/25/2019 08:58AM
 
I appreciate all your kind comments. I'll be passing near a different PMA this summer on a 2-man trip, and I hope to persuade my friend to attempt a day trip.
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