BWCA Entry Point, Route, and Trip Report Blog
February 27 2021
Number of Permits per Day: 2
Elevation: 1825 feet
Homer Lake - 40
Baker Lake 6.12.04 - 6.14.04
June 12, 2004
Number of Days:
Baker Lake, Peterson Lake, Kelly Lake, Burnt Lake, Smoke Lake, Sawbill Lake, Ada Lake, Skoop Lake, Cherokee Lake
We left home at 2:00am with our two alumacraft canoes. Stopped in Luck, Wi to pick up a couple friends and drove the 4 hours to Tofte. Picked up Permits and stopped by Sawtooth Outfitters where I had rented a Solo Prism Canoe. Drove the last 45 min to Baker Lake and we were in the water by 8:30 am. It was misting lightly but not enough to get us very wet. We made our way through the first couple portages to the first tough one, 240 rods from Kelly Lake to Burnt Lake. The portage itself was not too bad other than the length but we were ready to be done by the time we got to the end. We decided to attempt the stream shown in the map going north from Smoke Lake to Sawbill. It got pretty narrow at several points and we had to lift the canoes over a couple beaver dams but we made it. It added a little variety to our route. We covered a couple more lakes and finally made it to Cherokee Creek. We paddled down the creek to Cherokee Lake. We looked at a couple camp-sites and decided on the site on the north west end of the bay on the south of the lake. The site was up above the water on a rocky area. We had a great view of the lake from there. We were all pretty tired after our days work so we just relaxed for a little while. Finally got around to setting up camp. My brother caught a couple of Northerns so we were able to add fish to our menu. We had a great evening sitting around the fire and finally went to bed at bout 10:00.
Cherokee Lake, Sitka Lake, North Temperance Lake, South Temperance Lake, Weird Lake, Jack Lake
We got up and enjoyed Breakfast Burritos, made with tortillas, bacon, and scrambled eggs, with some coffee or hot chocolate. We packed up all of our gear and got back on the water by about 10:00. We paddled at an easy pace most of the morning. We worked our way through, Sitka, North Temperance, and South Temperance. When we reached the 230 rod portage headed into Weird Lake the other guys decided that they wanted to try the rapids instead of the portage. I had the rented Kevlar Canoe and did not think that I should risk it in the rapids. They ended up having to walk the canoes most of the way down. They made it about half way and decided to bushwhack their way back to the trail. They finally caught up to me, very wet and glad that they had attempted the rapids. We finally reached our site on Jack Lake, set up camp and had a dinner of Mac and Cheese, beans, and brats. It rained for about 15 minutes as we were preparing dinner, which ended up being a good thing because the bugs disappeared for the next couple hours. When the bugs finally showed back up again they were bad enough that we went to bed to get away from them.
We started the day off with some oatmeal and burritos. After we finished breakfast we packed up our gear, cleaned up our camp, and hit the water. We needed to get home at a reasonable hour. We had a couple easy portages and enjoyed canoeing down the river. Just before our last portage into Baker Lake there is a small rapids and I flipped the canoe over as I was attempting to navigate around a tree. Thankfully, I had tied my pack into the canoe and it was a waterproof pack. My gear stayed pretty dry. :) I was able to throw my pack into one of the other canoes and I walked the canoe the rest of the way to the portage. After I got out of the water I actually felt a lot better. All of the bug spray had been washed off, my clothes were clean (and wet), and I had energy for the trip home. I had to look for the positive elements in my unexpected bath. We drove back to Tofte and returned the canoe to the outfitter, and then headed home. All in all it was a great trip as always! I can not wait for the next one.