billconner: "I usually go in September or October and no longer take a tow on Moose to PP. Sometimes I see no motors. One I saw 4. At most a 2 hour difference and i go to paddle. Ymmv. (Banks: that means "your mileage may vary")"
I think you mean ytmv (your time may vary)- miles are constant.
Takes 30-45 minutes for a tow. I usually can make the paddle in under two hours.
I did a similar route in 2013 but I went to Agnes then Louisa through the small lakes to McEwen and then up the Falls chain to the Man chain back to Moose. Whichever way you go a stop to check out Louisa Falls on Agnes is worth it. If it’s warm out take a dip in the bathtub at the base of the falls.
I usually go in September or October and no longer take a tow on Moose to PP. Sometimes I see no motors. One I saw 4. At most a 2 hour difference and i go to paddle. Ymmv. (Banks: that means "your mileage may vary")
Your route is a good one with lots of options.
A couple of thoughts: Agnes is indeed a pretty lake, and a long paddle. It can easily be broken up by camping somewhere in the middle, or simply meandering along the shore for miles.
The Silence Lake Cutoff, as I refer to it, is an option, as is East Lake over to North Bay.
Your trip has more than ample time even with some weather issues.
Last, and not particular to your trip: Having a set date and time at PP for a pick up has started to make me feel a tad constrained. That certainty can become the tail that wags the dog. I find if I camp on Sunday, my last night it is not difficult to just paddle back to the outfitter or public landing. I normally get to PP 30-45 minutes early for the tow so it does not really cost me too much time and saves a few bucks. Mostly, I like the freedom of coming out when I want on my own time schedule. On the other hand I don't like the paddle back with all the boats.
Have a great trip!
billconner: "It's a stream iirc - if I recall correctly. "
No stream on portage between Basswood and Sunday Lake. Generally slowly uphill towards Sunday with a somewhat steep descent at the very end to Sunday Lake.
Flow from Sunday to Basswood is through Burke (Singing Brook Portage) and then into North Bay.
Portages between Sunday and Agnes (through Meadows Lake) are nothing to be concerned about. You can break them up by camping on Meadows (nice largemouth)- not a bad option as camps on the south end of Agnes tend towards heavy use and trampled. The relative ease of portages on the Silence route (the S-chain) not worth missing the scenery on the south end of Agnes (South end of Agnes has very steep, tall shoreline that gets steeper and taller through the narrows and then as you leave the narrows (heading north) flattens into this wide vast lake- stunning).
I've always had good luck with LT on Agnes.
Great input, much appreciated!
"You really don't need to tow from PP to Indian Portage. Just paddle into Birch - it will be less time." Great info BillConner
I was thinking another option may be to jump out of agnes into silence after the pictos and skip the 2 large meadow lake portages? Im really not opposed to portaging but I may be ready to get off the big water and see more lakes. Banksiana mentioned the Agnes Narrows, I agree that I would like to see that area as well may be a last minute decision. Poacher lake is interesting but a major portage out. I thought I have read in the past that it doesnt get a whole lot of use. Staying on the secluded lake on my last night sounds really nice, especially if the fishing is good!
This year I spent my last night on Pipestone bay across from the Newton Lake Portage. This was a mistake. Too many people. Kind of felt like I wasted a night staying there. I dont want to stay on basswood that close to the EP.
It's a stream iirc - if I recall correctly.
Sunday portage is a little muddy in the worst of conditions but it has been nearly paved (well graveled) as a scout project- a slightly longer walk in the park (not sure what a stream iirc means). I take about four trips a year (usually solo) out of Prairie portage- I'd never consider opting for the Burke portage if it's not on my way (though I have taken the Sunday Portage a few times instead of the Burke due to big winds on Basswood). But if adding a short portage and a few extra miles of paddling to avoid two hundred yards of portage seems like a reasonable trade- go for it.
Either direction is good. More loading and unloading of gear when heavy if you start via Carp though probably more walking (in terms of distance) when heavy if you start via Agnes. Main advantage of Agnes first is the transition through the Agnes Narrows heading north- one of the most spectacular sections of the park. If you start via Carp you get the current with you on the Falls Chain.
If you don't mind walking and like lake trout consider spending your last night on Poacher. Nice lake that you rarely have to share and it takes the wind on Bailey Bay out of the equation. Portage to Inlet Bay from Poacher does seem longer than its listed distance. Route from Sunday to Poacher is a wonderful stream paddle.
Nice route. You really don't need to tow from PP to Indian Portage. Just paddle into Birch - it will be less time.
It may be me but both times across Dead Man's portage -
Saganagons to Saganagons - I got off track.
Ive done Burke and Sunday Bay. If it's wet, rainy, but not too windy - take Burke. The Sunday portage is a stream iirc and very muddy when wet. High wind, Sunday makes some sense.
AmarilloJim: "If you went the other way your packs might be lighter for the bulk of your portages."
I was wondering if clockwise or counter clockwise made the most sense. I will keep that in mind!
I did a similar route last Spring in 10 days. I did day trips to Chatterton Falls and to lake McKenzie. I did not take a tow but I went first week of June. If you went the other way your packs might be lighter for the bulk of your portages.
Banksiana: "I know that lots of folk go through Burke for the "easy" portage- never made any sense to me to add four miles of paddling and another loading and unloading to avoid 200 yards of portage trail."
You make a good point on Sunday instead of Burke. I was just thinking of adding another lake visited and it didn't look like it added to much distance but taking on more big water is a risk for sure if the wind is blowing on Basswood! Thanks for the input.
Looks like a pleasant trek with plenty of cushion for weather. I'd suggest going directly from Sunday to Basswood- you'll avoid a big chunk of Basswood (wave exposure). I know that lots of folk go through Burke for the "easy" portage- never made any sense to me to add four miles of paddling and another loading and unloading to avoid 200 yards of portage trail.
Never been to Quetico. Looking at a 9 day solo trip: Entry at Carp Lake to Man Chain to Falls Chain to Agnes and out Prairie Portage. I plan to take a Tow from the outfitter on moose coming and going to save some time. After the ranger station I would be towed to Indian Portage into Carp Lake EP 62 to the Man Chain. Nothing sure on campsites or exact timeline. Hoping to run into some trout on the Man Chain, Agnes, Dack and then focus on Walleye, Pike and Bass on Kawnipi. More miles covered in the front half of the trip and more leisure at the mid and end. 2 layover days. Any input is appreciated. Recommended sites, fishing, points of interest would be appreciated.
Day 1 - Carp to Other Man 13.4 mi.
Day 2 - Other Man to the Falls Chain (Wet Lake Area) 14.5 mi.
Day 3 - Falls Chain to Kawnipi (Mid Lake) 10 mi.
Day 4 - Layover - Kawnipi
Day 5 - Kawnipi to Dack Lake 8 mi.
Day 6 Layover - Dack - fish and possibly bushwack to Swartman to see the Picto.
Day 7 - Dack to South Agnes 11 mi.
Day 8 - Agnes to Burke 8 mi.
Day 9 - Burke to Prairie Portage 4 mi. and tow back to outfitter.