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June 13 2024

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
Snowbank Lake - 27

Snowbank to Ima

by hunter1897
Trip Report

Entry Date: August 23, 2015
Entry Point: Snowbank Lake
Number of Days: 5
Group Size: 5

Trip Introduction:
Varied weather conditions but still a great little loop.


We got to Snowbank early on the 23rd because the wind and rain was going to make it hard to paddle across. Our goal was to simply get across Snowbank and from there find a camp to get settled in for a day or more of rain and wind. We went straight to the 140 rod portage to Disappointment Lake. We found a really great camp site on the Eastern shore on a little peninsula that made for a good day and a half, wind-blown/bound layover. Lots of little smallmouth bass nearby, and one nice Northern caught as well. Seems like the forest service was at the camp site recently cutting down trees...helped us find good wood for a fire to keep us warm and dry with all the wind and rain.

On the 25th we left Snowbank for Ima. We ended up camping on one of the most beautiful sites we've ever been at...the Island with 2 sites on it NE of the portage in from Jordan Lake. Forest service clearly was here recently because there was a brand new latrine that hadn't been used yet.  Finally got to see the sun as it set that evening.

On the 26th we decided to head back towards Snowbank as we had to come out on the 27th. We took the other route back going through a bunch of little lakes like Swing and Boot. 8 portages made for a long day, but they were all pretty easy relatively speaking, especially carrying a 17' Grumman Aluminum canoe. 

We stopped for lunch on the second camp site on Boot. This site isn't very nice...lots of muck in the water...don't recommend it.

We ended up staying our last night on Snowbank at the first site on the left when you come through the portage from Boot. This too was a very nice site...great for the setting sun in the evening. We tried to find the site that was to the right of that portage coming into Snowbank but it apparently doesn't exist. 

All in all a great trip, but not very far. We typically go much longer but with a day layover for rain we had to cut our paddling short. They said there was a lot of bear activity in the area but we didn't encounter any.