BWCA Louse River portages Boundary Waters Group Forum: portages and campsites
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      Louse River portages     

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07/14/2017 09:59PM  
I jotted some of these down from our June 2017 trip (not all....just the major ones) We went from Wine to Malberg , 16 portages, in one day. I forgot the little ones, but tried to recall the bigger ones.
Can't get there without doing the 460r from Lujenida to Zenith. It is long.......but fairly flat. The flooded beaver swamp in the middle is really the worst part. It has a boardwalk, but it is mostly underwater. Really not that bad except it takes a while to do.
Wine to Mug 87r. Not a bad portage, rock spine in the middle, quick downhill to Mug with big rock steps and a very rocky landing. The Mug end ruins this portage.....it is a tough spot.
Poe to Louse 84r. Terrible rocky landing on Poe end.....and it stays rocky (BAD ROCKY) for 2/3 of this portage. Very tough walking. Fairly flat and gradual downhill to Louse with a nice grassy landing on that end.
Louse to River(before Bug) 105r. Decent at the start but then you hit a flooded section thanks to the beavers. It looks like you should paddle straight across the flooded section....wrong.....paddle to the right and follow the steep bank to the beaver dam. Bad footing at the dam....an 8 foot high drop to other side. You pick the trail up behind the dam but it travels along the river, or in and out of the river for a while. Very messy. It eventually dries out and doesn't finish too bad.
Bug to River 129r. Once again, the beavers have the start of this portage messed up. We never did find it. It is evidently WAY left of the river outflow. We tried the river but soon realized that was useless and had to bushwack to our left about 20 rods to find the trail. After that it is a pretty decent trail down to the river but has a tough, rocky landing right at the base of the rapids.
River to Tool 60r. Tool isn't much of a lake. Pretty portage along a series of drops and pools. Take the time to walk 20 yards off the portage to check them out. Tricky little "s" curve ending as you drop down at the end to a nice gravel landing. Tough to snake your canoe past the trees.
River(west of Tool) to Trail 130r. Really a pretty decent portage. Close to the Trail end, there is a steep drop down into a ravine where you hop across a creek and the climb back up a rock face. You'd better have a little head of steam to get up it!
Louse River to Boze 188r. This one is not 188.....not sure what it is. Not one long portage, but a short hike, a paddle and another short hike. You dont go very far and then you can put back into the river and paddle through an alder swamp. It looks like people have tried to keep portaging past this put in.....don't......do the paddle. The swamp gets huge and I can't believe there is a possible easy trail around it. The paddle is straight and easy except the take out is at a beaver dam and rock pile and is very difficult. Once back on the trail it is easy down to Boze.
Boze to pond to Frond. Boze to pond goes right through campsite....up the hill behind site, make a hard right, follow trail down to put in at base of rapids.
Pond to Frond.....just a short , rocky one to make you mad cuz you're almost done.
I really wish I would have cataloged them all. There was another one, maybe the 38r after Trail that had a nasty little "trough" that you have to hop down into....full of mud and water. Very strange.... mcsweem has that one on his youtube channel, but I think he recalls it in the wrong spot/portage.
It was a long day of portaging, very rugged. The last portage into Malberg is flat and easy and a very welcome site.
 
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TuscaroraBorealis
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07/20/2017 08:37AM  
Thanks for the write up! I, for one, really appreciate it. It's been several years but, I still vividly recall the boulder strewn paths that litter much of that area. More the boulders than the trails themselves. :)
 
cyclones30
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06/24/2018 08:07PM  
My wife day tripped from Malberg to Frond and back. The portage from Malberg to the river can be skipped in normal water levels. We did make the mistake of thinking a big flat rock on shore of Malberg was the portage. It's not, landing is up in the river mouth if you do decide to use it.
 
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