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BWCA Entry Point, Route, and Trip Report Blog

May 30 2024

Entry Point 30 - Lake One

Lake One entry point allows overnight paddle only. This entry point is supported by Kawishiwi Ranger Station near the city of Ely, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 21 miles. Access is a canoe landing at Lake One.

Number of Permits per Day: 13
Elevation: 1230 feet
Latitude: 47.9391
Longitude: -91.4792
My son Remy and I, and my friend Keith and his son Charlie put our canoes into Lake one at 9:30 Monday morning after dropping off a car at the Snowbank Lake landing. Lake One can be tricky to navigate. On our way to Lake Two we turned East too early and ended up paddling about a mile out of our way into a dead-end bay before we realized our mistake. We blamed the fact that Lake One was split between Fisher Maps #10 and #4 for our error. If the entire lake had been visible at once on a single map, we would not have made the wrong turn. Once we got back on course we portaged the 30 rods into a pond and then portaged the 40 rods into Lake Two. The weather was nice, and there was a bit of a tail wind out of the West. We stopped for lunch on the shore of Lake Two. After lunch we canoed through the North end of Lake Three and into Lake Four. We stopped for the night at a campsite on the West shore of Lake Four, just North of the channel heading toward Hudson Lake. We had to battle swarms of mosquitoes as we set up the tents. We then had a nice refreshing swim. Because we had brought steaks along for the first night, we didn't go fishing.

On Tuesday morning we had a bacon and eggs breakfast then packed up camp and headed out in our canoes. As we canoed past our campsite, we realized that Remy & I had left our hammocks pitched between trees. We landed again and quickly packed them up. Once again we had beautiful weather. We paddled East and completed 3 short portages before entering Hudson Lake. The 105 rod portage into Lake Insula was exhausting! Lake Insula is a large gorgeous lake broken up by multiple islands and penninsulas. We had lunch at a campsite on a large island just East of Hudson Lake. It felt like we had a tail wind as we were heading East, and then as we turned North it seemed like the wind shifted and was at our backs once again. We navigated Lake Insula flawlessly and camped for the night on the island just West of Williamson Island. After setting up the tents and a refreshing swim, Remy & I got back into the canoe and tried to catch some fish. We had no luck! At 9PM that night, just as we were going to bed, a thunderstorm rolled through. That night I was awakened several times by the loud croaking of bullfrogs from the shallows around our island. What noisy neighbors!

By Wednesday morning the weather had cleared, but the wind was now coming from the Northwest, pretty much in our faces. We paddled to the North end of Lake Insula and tackled the largest portage of our trip. The 180 rod walk to Kiana Lake actually seemed easier than the 105 rod carry into Lake Insula. We headed onward into Thomas Lake where we really started feeling the headwind. We finally made it to the campsite just Northeast of the portage into Thomas Pond in time for lunch. After lunch we proceeded across Thomas Pond and into Thomas Creek after hiking across the famous Kekekabic Trail. We managed to easily run the rapids in Thomas Creek and avoid the 2 short portages. We camped for the night on Hatchet Lake at the northern campsite. It was cool and windy, so we didn't swim. There was lots of threatening weather going by to the North of us, but we stayed dry. After supper we canoed back to Thomas Creek to fish and look for moose. No luck on either count, but we did see a beaver swimmming.

The weather was nice again Thursday morning, but the wind was out of the West which was the direction we were heading. We portaged into Ima Lake and canoed across it. Before portaging into Jordan Lake, we watched a bald eagle sitting in a tree get harrassed repeatedly by a seagull. The narrow channel leading into Jordan Lake is quite beautiful. It is narrow like a river with big rock outcroppings. We paddled across Jordan, Cattyman, Adventure, and Jitterbug Lakes. We found the Eastern campsite on Ahsub Lake taken, so we camped at the Western campsite which had a great place for swimming in front of it. There was a very brave loon in front of the campsite who didn't seem to mind if we got close to it. We tried our luck at fishing, but only caught 1 smallmouth which was too small to eat. Between 5:00 and 7:30 that evening we saw a number of canoes heading across Ahsub Lake from Disappointment Lake to Jitterbug Lake. We weren't sure where they were planning to camp, but it was getting late.

On Friday we awoke again to good weather. We paddled the length of Disappointment Lake and portaged into to Parent Lake and then on to Snowbank Lake. It was July 4th, and as we entered Snowbank Lake the sounfd of firecrackers reminded us we weren't in the wilderness anaymore. After a brief splash war on our way across Snowbank, we made it to the landing and our car was still there. What a great trip!

Farm Lake

by bobkammann
Trip Report

Entry Date: June 22, 2022
Entry Point: Farm Lake
Number of Days: 3
Group Size: 4

Trip Introduction:
Simple trip out of Farm Lake.

Report


Got started on a short trip with wife, daughter and boyfriend. Four of us overnighted in Ely to prep and hit the outfitter early in the morning. Got our gear and were off. Great guidance from outfitter giving us some tips on finding first few portages. Beautiful warm summer morning. Water was still high this June and we were surprised to see a log in one of the narrows until it dove as we approached and showed itself to be the biggest turtle I had seen. Looked about the size of a bike tire. 

After breaking in the newbie on first portage we targeted the portage into Clear Lake. I recalled it being a relatively easy flat portage and took off down the trail. High winds had created some hazards and we ended up going over and under several deadfalls - shucking the canoe about a half dozen times before reaching the end. It was fun to see the perspective of a new traveler - he just thought it was a typical portage. Future portages were much easier. We spent some time - clearing out a few of the deadfalls for others then stopped for lunch at Clear Lake. Had fun as we canoed past a pair of gulls that were near an island. They divebombed my daughter's canoe before we realized that they had some young they were protecting. We quickly retreated to give their family some peace.

First night in Kawishiwi - found a 4 star campsite a couple spots SE of the 70 rod portage. Wow -what a place. Settled in for some swimming, hammocking, and relaxing for the afternoon. After serving up a great meal of chicken fajitas - we went back in the woods to clean off the dishes away from shore. After returning - we were just getting ready to raise the bearbag - when I hear my wife screaming "Bear!" "Bear!". The black bear must have stopped by seeing if we had leftovers. We banged some pans and sent the bear lumbering off. But five minutes later - bear returns past tent to check once again for leftovers. Had a new cookkit this trip that now has some small 'personality dents' in it from banging the pans together to send our friend back in the woods. By this time -it is about 7:30 at night and the confidence level of the group of being able to sleep soundly with two visits from a bear is not very high. So we broke down camp and hustled over to another open campsite and setup. Felt pretty proud of the group in getting breakdown and setup with a short canoe in under an hour. Slept soundly with less concern of furry visitors in the middle of the night.

Next day - did some day tripping and settled back to Clear Lake for a warm afternoon and evening as the temps were hitting near 90. Great swimming hole was found and we nicknamed this as Turtle Campsite. We had found numerous turtles patrolling the shallows and several holes in the ground which we suspected to be hatch areas. 

Rest of the trip went smoothly and we found great enjoyment in the ares around Kawishiwi and Clear to introduce a first timer to a short three night adventure. 

 


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