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  Last Visit: 02/24/2020 12:56AM

Entry Point 47 - Lizz & Swamp Lakes

Lizz and Swamp Lakes entry point allows overnight paddle only. 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 28 miles. Access from Poplar Lake by 51-rod portage to Lizz Lake and 100-rod portage into Swamp Lake only. This area was affected by blowdown in 1999.

Number of Permits per Day: 4
Elevation: 1864 feet
Latitude: 48.0420
Longitude: -90.4998
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bwcahuggy
membermember
 
07/14/2016 10:13PM
 
New Trip Report posted by bwcahuggy

Trip Name: Awesome week on Horseshoe Lake .

Entry Point: 47

Click Here to View Trip Report

Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.
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FOG51
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07/15/2016 01:52AM
 
Well written report. Sounds like you all had a good time and really enjoyed yourselves, that's the thing about the BWCA sometimes you don't have to go really deep into the park to have a good time. You have have found out what I did years ago, whenever you see something you really want a picture of you have the wrong camera, wrong lens, no camera, bad lighting, you get the drift but you will always have the pictures in your head where you can enjoy them whenever you want to. Also if you haven't been welcomed before allow me to do so. Welcome aboard. FRED

Grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked, the good fourtune to remember the ones do, and the eyesight to tell the differance.
bwcahuggy
membermember
 
07/15/2016 05:27AM
 
Thank you Fred. After doing a little more research and finding out elk sightings are really rare I'm going to contact the DNR and let them know exactly where we saw the elk so they can possibly keep an eye out in that area. I got this picture of large scat while my wife and I explored the area behind the campsite.


It's not bear or wolf scat, too large for that. So we're thinking it may be elk because moose scat is more in pellet form. My wife works for our local conservation district, and takes groups of young kids out on nature walks, pointing out the different types of scat. My fishing partner the day we saw the elk is her boss, he is the head of the district. He has 40 years hunting experience and owns a large chunk of land in central Wisconsin. I've been hunting whitetail deer for 30 years and I know the difference between a deer and an elk. We both are quite sure the 3 animals we saw were a cow elk with twins.
I'll report what I find out from the DNR.

Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.
airmorse
distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2016 08:13AM
 
Consider yourself very fortunate. You experienced more wildlife in a few days than some people who trip in the BW their whole lives.


Glad you had a great trip. I was actually thinking next year our group would explore that area as we have not been there yet.

To the world you are just another person, but to your dog you are the world.
user0317
distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2016 09:53AM
 
Moose scat will take on more of a 'cow-pie' format (as opposed to pellet form)when they are eating exceptionally well. It's not too unusual to see it like that in the summer.


Very cool that you saw an elk up there.
nofish
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07/15/2016 11:27AM
 
I'm still a bit skeptical on the elk sighting. One single elk would be INCREDIBLY rare to near impossible in the BWCA. However you saw one with twins which means that there are not only the 3 elk you saw in the BWCA but at least 1 more with the 4th being the male that was available to breed with the cow. If there was a breeding population in the BWCA in a busy and popular area like Horseshoe lake you'd think more people would have gotten a glimpse or at the very least people would have been hearing a bugle from time to time.


I wonder if what you saw was a cow moose with twin calves and the trees/brush and distance obscured just enough to not get a positive ID.


Honestly I'd love for there to be elk roaming the BWCA but at this point I'm skeptical.
Spartan2
distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/15/2016 11:29AM
 
What a lovely trip report, and some nice photos, too. I cannot imagine staying on one lake for all of that time, but Horseshoe is a good place, and it sounds like you had a wonderful time. Thanks for sharing. Would have loved to see photos of the elk!
bwcahuggy
membermember
 
07/15/2016 12:29PM
 
quote nofish: "I'm still a bit skeptical on the elk sighting. One single elk would be INCREDIBLY rare to near impossible in the BWCA. However you saw one with twins which means that there are not only the 3 elk you saw in the BWCA but at least 1 more with the 4th being the male that was available to breed with the cow. If there was a breeding population in the BWCA in a busy and popular area like Horseshoe lake you'd think more people would have gotten a glimpse or at the very least people would have been hearing a bugle from time to time.



I wonder if what you saw was a cow moose with twin calves and the trees/brush and distance obscured just enough to not get a positive ID.



Honestly I'd love for there to be elk roaming the BWCA but at this point I'm skeptical."



I know it sounds hard to believe but what we saw behind the trees was definitely an elk head; you could make out her face and ears. I grunted at her hoping she would walk off to where I could get a video of her but she wouldn't move.
I talked with a person from the Minnesota DNR this morning and they said there are elk in NW Minnesota, and possibly some could have made it over to this area. They mentioned it could have been a woodland caribou. A caribou is much smaller than an elk. Hopefully someone else will see one in the near future. Here is a pic of a map showing where we saw them.







Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.
ducks
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07/16/2016 08:21AM
 
Nice report and thanks for sharing. In early May I did a solo in that area entering at Morgan and exiting at Lizz. I had Horseshoe all to myself for 2 nights. I saw 2 wolves on Horseshoe not far from the portage to Gaskin. I camped on site 675 and there was a lot of scat that looked like your picture back behind my site.

Ride EZ
bwcahuggy
membermember
 
07/16/2016 08:38AM
 
quote ducks: "Nice report and thanks for sharing. In early May I did a solo in that area entering at Morgan and exiting at Lizz. I had Horseshoe all to myself for 2 nights. I saw 2 wolves on Horseshoe not far from the portage to Gaskin. I camped on site 675 and there was a lot of scat that looked like your picture back behind my site."


Is 675 the furthest most site on the west branch leading towards Gaskin? The cow and calf that were our closest encounter came right out of the canoe launching area of that sight. All of the wildlife sightings were on that west branch of the lake. The wolf howling came from the east side of our 674 site.


Sounds like your solo trip was a blast!


Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.
ducks
distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/16/2016 09:09AM
 
quote bwcahuggy: "quote ducks: "Nice report and thanks for sharing. In early May I did a solo in that area entering at Morgan and exiting at Lizz. I had Horseshoe all to myself for 2 nights. I saw 2 wolves on Horseshoe not far from the portage to Gaskin. I camped on site 675 and there was a lot of scat that looked like your picture back behind my site."



Is 675 the furthest most site on the west branch leading towards Gaskin? The cow and calf that were our closest encounter came right out of the canoe launching area of that sight. All of the wildlife sightings were on that west branch of the lake. The wolf howling came from the east side of our 674 site.



Sounds like your solo trip was a blast!
"



675 is the site right behind 674. It's up on the rock ledge at the entrance to the southern arm that leads to Vista.


Yes, the solo was amazing. I went the weekend before fishing opener and on a 4 day trip I saw 4 moose, 2 wolves, 1 bear, 1 dead moose floating in Horseshoe, and only 2 people.

Ride EZ
bwcahuggy
membermember
 
07/16/2016 09:25AM
 



Yes; that was a very cool site! We tried to get it but it was already taken.


A dead moose? Wow. Was it an adult or a calf?


That area is definetly top notch for seeing wildlife. Thanks for sharing.

Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.
ducks
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07/16/2016 09:58AM
 
It was an adult floating right in the middle of the lake. I thought it was a rock until I got close to it. I was there a week after ice out so I assumed it maybe fell through the ice. I ran into a buddy last week and he was on Horseshoe 3 weeks after me and he said it was still there when they were there.




Ride EZ
boonie
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07/23/2016 08:33PM
 
Thanks, I enjoyed your trip report and pictures. I spent a couple days on Horseshoe a few years ago. It's a nice lake and area.
Charliepete
Guest Paddler
 
07/26/2016 06:23AM
 
That is definitely not too big a pile to be from a bear. You would be surprised at how big a pile a 400# bear can make. I would think you should see more berry pits etc at this time of year though. As mentioned before Moose and Elk poop pellets for the most part.
CityFisher74
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07/26/2016 08:35AM
 
Spent the whole trip report read thinking you were at the Horsehoe by the numbered lakes. Sounds like quite a trip, I hope to experience a Moose before I die. 25+ trips down and no Moose spotting but the time will come.

"The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders."
MNLindsey80
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08/30/2016 12:29PM
 
Super jazzed to be reading this trip report! We're heading to that area next, and I really would love to see a moose up there on this trip.


A little anxious about hearing wolves howling at night, but wow, what an animal adventure!

Currently, section hiking the SHT from Hartley Nature Center to the Otter Lake Road 270° degree overlook. 157/272miles complete.
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