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October 21 2021

Entry Point 37 - Kawishiwi Lake

Kawishiwi Lake entry point allows overnight paddle only. This entry point is supported by Tofte Ranger Station near the city of Isabella; Tofte, MN. The distance from ranger station to entry point is 33 miles. Access is a boat landing at Kawishiwi Lake.

Number of Permits per Day: 9
Elevation: 1653 feet
Latitude: 47.8390
Longitude: -91.1036
Kawishiwi Lake - 37

Short solo trip to Malberg

by Jburd
Trip Report

Entry Date: June 17, 2020
Entry Point: Kawishiwi Lake
Number of Days: 3
Group Size: 1

Trip Introduction:
My short solo trip to Malberg Lake with SOT kayak.

Day 1 of 3

Wednesday, June 17, 2020 Arrived at EP 37 at 6:20 am. Got on the water by 6:45 am and started the journey to Malberg. Brought my small sit-on-top fishing kayak this trip. I manufactured a yoke for the kayak which proved very helpful. I did the first 20 rod portage, but suspected that it may not have been necessary. My suspicions were correct. On the trip back I found there was just a beaver dam that I easily pulled the kayak over. The next 5 rod portage was nowhere to be seen and was not necessary. Maybe when water levels are lower it becomes more evident and needed. I kept paddling up the river to Kawasachong and ran into a massive beaver dam which required a mini portage to get around. At this point I shared my trip with another couple who were heading just north of Malberg. I single portaged my kayak and gear through the 189 and 95 rod portages leading into Lake Polly which I later regretted: It was very taxing on me due to the weight. They pulled ahead on Lake Polly since their canoe was much faster on open water, but I was able to catch up because they went to the wrong bay for the portage entrance on Polly's North side. I portaged the 19 rod out of Lake Polly; They skipped it and opted to wade through the rapids. We both skipped the 48 rod and waded through as they had previously done. Trying to make good time, I still single portaged the 127 rod...sometimes we never learn... They pulled ahead on Koma and I was left to myself. I arrived at Malberg around noon and made it to my desired camp site at 12:30 pm. I chose the beach site on the eastern side of the middle bay of the lake. It was secluded, had an excellent landing and swimming area and provided good cover and shade for the tent underneath the dense canopy of cedars surrounding the beach. The beach itself had very little shade from the afternoon sun, but I was able to suspend a tarp over the sitting area and fire pit. After setting up camp, eating and re-hydrating myself, I went fishing, but didn't catch anything. I didn't care to try fishing later in the evening this night as I was exhausted and wanted to get to bed early. As it began getting darker I could hear grouse drumming off in the distance.  


Day 2 of 3

Thursday, June 18, 2020 I was awakened at 4:00 am by the sound of what I describe as miniature ponies running around my tent. I yelled out because I was awoken so abruptly. They made several more passes and I could just catch a glimpse of what appeared to be a small rodent...I later found out that it was a pair of red squirrels. How such a small animal can make so much noise is astounding. I did some early morning fishing, but again did not catch anything. After breakfast, I did some fishing from shore and pulled in a small northern and a large blue gill. Decided to check out the rest of the lake and do some fishing at the bottom of the falls. This proved successful and I pulled in 5 small mouth bass in the 12-16 inch range. Since I brought plenty of food with me, I chose not to keep anything I caught. On my way to the falls I passed a pair of swans, and back at camp for lunch, I had a Ruffed Grouse stroll through. That afternoon I Checked out the other two campsite locations that were in the same bay in which I was staying. The middle site on the point of the peninsula is closed as already indicated on the entry point map, but not on my Mackenzie map. The site just west of the closed one was very small and had a large boulder right in the camp. The landing was not great for this location either. Of course, nothing else seems great compared to my own beach front landing. Ate dinner and then did a preliminary tear down of nonessential gear to speed up my pack out in the morning. For the remainder of the evening I fished from shore and caught 4 large blue gills. The largest was 10.5 inches.


Day 3 of 3

Friday, June 19, 2020 Up at 4:15 am. There had been a light sprinkle of rain that night. I ate breakfast and began packing. I set out at 5:50 am. Beavers were everywhere this morning slapping their tails on the water as I passed by. The morning was cloudy and cool, and the brush along the portage trails very wet. Saw a Spruce Grouse on one of the portage trails. I wised up this trip and double portaged which surprisingly didn't cost me any time. I made it back to Kawishiwi entry point by Noon which brings this short trip to a close.


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