BWCA Entry Point, Route, and Trip Report Blog
January 23 2020
Number of Permits per Day: 1
Elevation: 1593 feet
Bog Lake - 67
To Bog Lake and Back
August 29, 2008
Number of Days:
After several last minute cancels, this trip ended up being just 2 people. (and 2 dogs)
We left Hudson, WI at 4:30am, heading for Ely. We picked up the permit at the ranger station, which was completely empty at 9:30am. Ranger Tim decided that I needed a review of all rules. (maybe because I was headed for Bog Lake) He went into his spiel about fishing, and I told him that we weren't fishing. He said "No fishing?! Why are you going to Bog Lake then? That lake is full of walleyes." We finally got the permit and headed down Hwy. 1 to Tomahawk Rd. Finally made it to the Bog Lake parking lot around 11am.
We unloaded the packs, hooked up the dogs to leashes, and took off down the portage. (we had 2 packs and 1 canoe, so we would double portage) The path started off VERY brushy. It was a little disorienting, because you couldn't see a path. It was much more overgrown than last Labor Day. After getting through the brushy part, then it was a nice walk in the woods with a variety of coniferous trees. About 2/3 of the way, it heads uphill, finally descending to Bog Lake. We took a few minutes break, and then headed back for the canoe.
We started paddling around 1:00. There wasn't anyone else on the lake, so we had a leisurely paddle to the middle campsite on the north shore. We stopped to fill up water jugs, and then headed to the site. We got the tent set up and then hung the hammocks. The rest of the day was spent relaxing in the sun, and exploring the site.
We made pizza for dinner, and then hit the hay early since we had been up so early.
Slept in this morning, and then made a delicious breakfast of Cache Lake biscuits and gravy. (first time making it-- YUM!)
I went for a quick swim this morning and the water was cold!! It was a beautiful sunny day and perfect for just relaxing.
Surprisingly, it was pretty buggy at this site. Last year at the same time there weren't any bugs. Lots of mosquitoes and bees.
Spent the rest of the day hanging out. I read a great book titled "Merle's Door." While reading this afternoon, we noticed a red canoe appear on the lake around 3:30pm. They took the northeast site, and spent the rest of the day fishing.
For dinner we made Alessi white bean soup with a package of foil wrapped chicken, and Cache Lake garlic frying pan bread.
Got up this morning and had a leisurely morning. Had coffee and granola bars, then packed up the gear and tent. It was really windy this morning, and so the paddle back to the portage was an effort. It was also getting really warm. I decided to take the canoe first this time, and come back for the second pack. From Bog Lake, the first 90 rods are mostly uphill. It's a gradual ascension, but an ascension nonetheless. The dogs found a dead mouse on the trail, and spent a while sniffing it. By the time we made it to the car, it was downright hot. We loaded the gear and took the portage back to the lake. When we got back to the lake, the lab took a quick swim and both dogs got a lake drink. We grabbed the last pack and headed back one more time. On the last pass, we passed two older gentlemen who were heading to Bog to fish for the day. We got the canoe loaded and then headed back to Ely to have lunch and do a little shopping.
Bog Lake is a great little lake. The portage is definitely more challenging this year because of the overgrown foliage near the beginning of the portage from the parking lot. The north central site was really nice, with plenty of trees for hanging hammocks. There are 2 good-sized tent pods. The only bad part was the number of cigarette butts we picked up, both on the portage and at the campsite. Walking the portage, it's clear why the lake is named Bog. The portage goes through a bog, and the lake is surrounded by it. I wouldn't recommend portaging and camping here in the spring or early summer, but fall seems to be a nice time to enjoy the lake.