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      Trip Report - West Pike, Gogebic, & Salvelinus Fontinalis ~ Good reason for freezin'
 
  Last Visit: 05/18/2021 07:11PM

Entry Point 62 - Clearwater Lake

Clearwater Lake entry point allows overnight paddle or motor (10 HP max). This entry point is supported by Gunflint Ranger Station near the city of Grand Marais, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 33 miles. Motors allowed on Clearwater Lake only. This area was affected by blowdown in 1999.

Number of Permits per Day: 3
Elevation: 1673 feet
Latitude: 48.0702
Longitude: -90.3752
Author Message Text
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/10/2012 01:39PM
 
New Trip Report posted by TuscaroraBorealis

Trip Name: West Pike, Gogebic, & Salvelinus Fontinalis ~ Good reason for freezin'.

Entry Point: 62

Click Here to View Trip Report
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BWPaddler
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02/10/2012 03:42PM
 
Awesome report!! Almost made me want to head up there in the winter... the camera battery was hilarious and amazing... good pics and descriptions.


Did you let the trout go or eat it?


Nice report!

Wherever there is a channel for water, there is a road for the canoe. -Thoreau
Woodtick
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02/10/2012 06:02PM
 
Thanks for sharing. Makes me want to do a winter trip too. I was surprised with the number of people you ran into on Clearwater.

Get off the road!
mocha
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02/11/2012 03:17PM
 
what a great trip! the lack of snow on the lakes seemed to be a blessing. just like summer trips, it's a bummer when your ideal site is taken, and then something better pops up...
the pictures and video tell the story of how much fun you all had. thanks for sharing your trip.
mocha
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02/11/2012 03:17PM
 
i liked it twice as much the second time i read it!
PINETREE
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02/12/2012 10:00AM
 
Nice report-Thanks. The campsite you stayed on West Pike I winter camped on it about 6 years ago.Last year I day tripped into West Pike and had a dogsled come in from the East pike area. That kind of surprised me they come in that way(I love the sight of dog sleds skirting across a lake-it is so beautiful). I Wonder about road conditions getting up to the John lake area?
bapazian1
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02/12/2012 11:17AM
 
Reading this on a cold windy day in snowless New York City. This makes me really miss Northern Minnesota! Your trip report was excellent and the photos/videos were great. The Border Region up there is just spectacular. I've always wanted to do a winter trip in that area but until my time comes I will live vicariously through trip reports like this. Thanks so much for the well chronicled trip as it makes me smile to see those pictures all the way out here in NY. Keep up the good work!!!
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/12/2012 07:51PM
 
quote PINETREE: "I Wonder about road conditions getting up to the John lake area? "


I was just up there last winter. The Arrowhead trail is plowed & well maintained all the way just past the McFarland/Little John lake accesses.

Winter #68

I too was a little surprised by the amount of "traffic" on Clearwater. And it's always a bit discouraging to find the target campsite already taken, but, IMHO those complaints are quite minor in the big picture of the great trip we had.
PINETREE
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02/12/2012 08:38PM
 
Thanks for the reply. I think it gets moderate use because of the scenery like the palisades and usually pretty good skiing,minus the slush. Sounds like you did not see a real lot of people after you got started,the problem was they were thinking the same thing you were.


You know when winter camping I usually like being in a tent and cold camping. Slept out one time and in the morning had a little fresh snow on the sleeping bag. Always worried it is going to get wet. Also did frost build up on the outside of your bag? Sleeping bag type used?
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/12/2012 08:53PM
 
I have the Marmot CWM membrain sleeping bag. I really like it. It has a waterproof shell (membrain)so a little frost doesn't hurt anything. Still, I like to hang it out to dry (weather permitting)on occasion just to be safe.




This photo was taken the morning we slept out on the lake under the stars. Clearly you can see some frost has built up. Since we were packing up and heading out right after getting up that morning I didn't do much more than give it a quick brush off. The bag was slightly damp when I unpacked it at home to air out. But, if we were staying another night I would've taken more care to clean all the frost off & then likely hung it out as well.


With the waterproof membraine, frost usually wipes off quite easily. Just need to take the time to do it. :)
whitecedar
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02/13/2012 09:47PM
 
Excellent trip report TB!
SevenofNine
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02/15/2012 02:37PM
 
Great trip report Paul.

The best part of this journey here is further knowing yourself - Alan Kay
mooseplums
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02/16/2012 10:39PM
 
enjoyable!!!!


"I am haunted by waters"~Norman Maclean "A River Runs Through It"
Dan Cooke
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02/20/2012 06:52AM
 
Thanks for my winter trip report fix. Skiing the Length of Clearwater can get to be a bit long.
PINETREE
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02/20/2012 08:11AM
 
I love skiing the length of Clearwater with the Palisades and background so beautiful. If you get a slush condition, than I agree or a strong cold west wind.
TuscaroraBorealis
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02/20/2012 06:50PM
 
quote Dan Cooke: "Thanks for my winter trip report fix. Skiing the Length of Clearwater can get to be a bit long."


Your welcome.


And thank you! It was your trip last winter with Uncle Moose & subsequently chatting with you at the spring expo at MWM that contributed to the spawning of this trip. And yes, that first day, crossing nearly all of Clearwater, was a bit more than we had planned. But, I think we all took it as just a minor unexpected challenge of, what turned out to be, a great adventure.
Ho Ho
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02/20/2012 08:29PM
 
Thanks for posting that great report. Great trip! But I hope next year it's colder and more snow! :-)


TuscaroraBorealis
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02/24/2012 07:17PM
 
Believe it or not I agree. At least on the colder part. Of course I'm splitting hairs here....(It was a great trip) but, regulating my temperature (sweat) was probably the biggest obstacle I had to overcome on this trip. Ironic that last year (winter) was the coldest temperature I've ever camped in. While this year was the warmest (winter) camping temperatures I've encountered. Only a 75 degree swing! :)


As far as snow goes. IMHO there was just enough so as not to be too burdensome. For the most part travel was quite easy. So I'm not complaining on that front. :)
Ho Ho
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02/24/2012 09:47PM
 
That makes sense that the snow was good for camping this winter - but we need a lot more of it for the spring and summer to be back to normal. Fortunately we are getting some significant snow now, but there's a deep hole to dig out of. That's why I say "more snow!"
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