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      Ran into a group of 13 people in Quetico     
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07/16/2019 09:20PM
I just got back from my Quetico trip. I had a pick up at Twin Falls for a tow back to Crane Lake . My plan was to camp at Twin falls the night before my departure.

When I got to the falls, I was surprised to find a group of thirteen people camped at the falls. The group had six tents, screen house, portable hot shower unit, giant tarped area, several coolers, and just about everything, including the kitchen sink! They said they were going to camp there at the entry point for a week.

The group went through an outfitter that I will not mention. Seems to me the particular outfitter should have explained the rules to them as far as group size, number of tents, etc. I didn’t say anything to them. They were a nice bunch of guys from Kentucky. I don’t think the authorities in charge will be as nice to them as I was if they happen to get checked.

I ended up going back upstream and finding a campsite on the Maligne and paddled back to my tow in the morning . I’m sure the outfitter they used knew of their plans.
 
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scat
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07/16/2019 10:52PM
They were a nice bunch of guys from Kentucky. So why do you care what they do. Did they bother you. Let them enjoy their time together. If they get busted for breaking the rules that is on them. If they were cool, I mean, does it really matter to you. I don’t get it.
 
07/17/2019 12:05AM
I think Scat woke up on the wrong side of the bed.

That is a big group. I heard the Quetico is full of problem rule breakers and overcrowded. Maybe next trip go to the BW :)
 
shock
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07/17/2019 03:09AM
so Walllee shares a story of something he was surprised to see. and that bothered you scat and rule violations dont ,
 
Jackfish
Moderator
 
07/17/2019 06:12AM
Scat... “Lighten up, Francis.”

Good grief, man... seriously, did Walllee confront them, report them or do anything? He’s simply commenting here about an illegal camping situation that he saw. Quit looking for negative stuff.
 
bobbernumber3
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07/17/2019 06:33AM
Thanks for your opinion Scat. Sorry others are jumping on you for what you have stated and believe. Let's discuss the topic and not shoot the messenger.
 
hobbydog
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07/17/2019 07:02AM
It does bother me a bit to think about how much scat and tp was left in the woods from a group that large staying that long. That’s a lot of scat in a place with no latrine.
 
missmolly
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07/17/2019 07:29AM
hobbydog: "It does bother me a bit to think about how much scat and tp was left in the woods from a group that large staying that long. That’s a lot of scat in a place with no latrine. "
Good point. There's also the trampling of flora. I'll make a campsite in the boreal forest on Crown Land, return to it five years later, and I can still see where I pitched my tent.
 
Minnesotian
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07/17/2019 11:30AM
missmolly: "hobbydog: "It does bother me a bit to think about how much scat and tp was left in the woods from a group that large staying that long. That’s a lot of scat in a place with no latrine. "
Good point. There's also the trampling of flora. I'll make a campsite in the boreal forest on Crown Land, return to it five years later, and I can still see where I pitched my tent. "


Reading on another site it sounds like that particular campsite it pretty popular. I can imagine it looks pretty beat down already. After 13 people stay there, with coolers, 6 tents, and a lot of wandering around looking for a place to relieve themselves, I wouldn't want to be the next group to stay there.

And I do have to say, if these guys got in with the help of an outfitter that looked the other way in regards to the regulations, then shame on the outfitter.
 
FullGo
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07/17/2019 11:33AM
Another reason to avoid Quetico??
 
arctic
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07/17/2019 01:53PM
scat: "They were a nice bunch of guys from Kentucky. So why do you care what they do. Did they bother you. Let them enjoy their time together. If they get busted for breaking the rules that is on them. If they were cool, I mean, does it really matter to you. I don’t get it."

The problem is the impact on the land by so many people in one place. That kind of activity might be fine in Kentucky, but is not acceptable up here. Plus, Quetico is not in the USA. Americans already have a bad enough reputation outside of the US.

Maybe the party at fault was the outfitter. If that is the case, they put all those guys at risk of big fines.
 
scat
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07/17/2019 04:23PM
I guess I have been through too much and seen too many friends die and get hurt on the job lately to care if some nice guys from Kentucky want to have fun in their own way. Driving around Chicago today I saw three people honk when someone didn’t immediately accelerate when a green light came on, two people flip someone off cuz they apparently were in their way to turn left. I mean, who cares. Go on your own way and be happy. I would never flip someone off, and don’t really care if someone cheeses out at a stoplight. Nor do I care if a group of nice guys from Kentucky break the rules. That is on them. If it doesn’t ruin your ride, just go on with your own self. What does posting about it here accomplish. No prob, if that makes you happy. All I’m sayin.

Cheers, scat
 
mschi772
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07/17/2019 06:36PM
arctic: "scat: "They were a nice bunch of guys from Kentucky. So why do you care what they do. Did they bother you. Let them enjoy their time together. If they get busted for breaking the rules that is on them. If they were cool, I mean, does it really matter to you. I don’t get it."


The problem is the impact on the land by so many people in one place. That kind of activity might be fine in Kentucky, but is not acceptable up here. Plus, Quetico is not in the USA. Americans already have a bad enough reputation outside of the US.

Maybe the party at fault was the outfitter. If that is the case, they put all those guys at risk of big fines."


Regarding human impact on campsites, it happens FAST.

"For example, on campsites in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, 95% of the total loss of tree seedlings and 61% of the increase in soil compaction occurred on sites receiving just 12 nights of use/year (Marion and Merriam 1985)."

Quoted from Development of the U.S. Leave No Trace Program:
An Historical Perspective by Jeffrey L. Marion and Scott E. Reid, January 2001
 
Zwater
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07/17/2019 08:25PM
mschi772: "arctic: "scat: "They were a nice bunch of guys from Kentucky. So why do you care what they do. Did they bother you. Let them enjoy their time together. If they get busted for breaking the rules that is on them. If they were cool, I mean, does it really matter to you. I don’t get it."



The problem is the impact on the land by so many people in one place. That kind of activity might be fine in Kentucky, but is not acceptable up here. Plus, Quetico is not in the USA. Americans already have a bad enough reputation outside of the US.


Maybe the party at fault was the outfitter. If that is the case, they put all those guys at risk of big fines."



Regarding human impact on campsites, it happens FAST.


"For example, on campsites in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, 95% of the total loss of tree seedlings and 61% of the increase in soil compaction occurred on sites receiving just 12 nights of use/year (Marion and Merriam 1985)."


Quoted from Development of the U.S. Leave No Trace Program:
An Historical Perspective by Jeffrey L. Marion and Scott E. Reid, January 2001"


Then I guess no one should be allowed at campsites in the BWCA. What does this information prove?
 
07/17/2019 10:12PM
Zwater: "Then I guess no one should be allowed at campsites in the BWCA. What does this information prove?"
No, it doesn’t mean that at all. What it means is if we follow the rules, our grandkids and their grandkids might be able to enjoy the area years down the road.

How the hell does a simple observation put in a thread cause people to become so obtuse? I posted my observation because it’s up to all of us to follow the rules, ESPECIALLY THE OUTFITTERS!!
 
Zwater
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07/17/2019 10:29PM
I was referring to mschi772's comments. Not yours walllee.
 
hobbydog
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07/18/2019 06:39AM
Zwater: "Then I guess no one should be allowed at campsites in the BWCA. What does this information prove?"
It means that we humans have a large impact on sites and thus we need rules to minimize that impact. The rules are already liberal. Violations and especially gross violations have a cumulative impact on all who use the resources. Peer pressure from the user community can have as much deterrent as law enforcement.
 
ZaraSp00k
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07/18/2019 06:51AM
hobbydog:


It means that we humans have a large impact on sites and thus we need rules to minimize that impact. The rules are already liberal. Violations and especially gross violations have a cumulative impact on all who use the resources. Peer pressure from the user community can have as much deterrent as law enforcement. "


thanks for trying to educate the ignorant, but sometimes its a lost cause
notice that this and the jet skier were both from areas far away

 
Pinetree
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07/18/2019 11:00AM
minnmike: " I think Scat woke up on the wrong side of the bed.


That is a big group. I heard the Quetico is full of problem rule breakers and overcrowded. Maybe next trip go to the BW :)"


Agree,there is a reason for that rule-campsite degradation etc.. There is a reason you draw a arbritary(sp) line of restrictions. Its to maintain a quality for all. Yes,also we are a guest of that Country also.
 
TominMpls
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07/19/2019 08:55AM
missmolly: "Good point. There's also the trampling of flora. I'll make a campsite in the boreal forest on Crown Land, return to it five years later, and I can still see where I pitched my tent. "

I think this observation deserves more attention - it's really striking. Do you think there are things that you could do that would make it less likely to leave a mark on the land? Well-established campsites are pretty beaten down, but I would think a single use of a non-campsite area could recover pretty quickly; apparently not. It's easy for those of us who make a light impact to think we're not leaving one.
 
07/19/2019 11:32AM
That’s why I never felt bad about camping solo at a spot like that. Give old Mother Earth a break from the bigger groups. Like it does any good... I quit taking groups in when I realized the effect they were having on the sites. Also I found smaller groups equaled greater experience. I saw three groups of nine traveling together mid September one year. That’s a lot of people all at once go by when your trying to enjoy your own space.
 
missmolly
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07/19/2019 01:13PM
TominMpls: "missmolly: "Good point. There's also the trampling of flora. I'll make a campsite in the boreal forest on Crown Land, return to it five years later, and I can still see where I pitched my tent. "


I think this observation deserves more attention - it's really striking. Do you think there are things that you could do that would make it less likely to leave a mark on the land? Well-established campsites are pretty beaten down, but I would think a single use of a non-campsite area could recover pretty quickly; apparently not. It's easy for those of us who make a light impact to think we're not leaving one. "


It's depressing, isn't it? Sleeping on pine needles, as opposed to moss, helps, but often I take what nature provides. A campfire makes it worse. You can see those for years. Same with making a fire ring. You could scatter the rocks when you're done and chuck the burnt logs into the woods or water.
 
missmolly
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07/19/2019 03:42PM
You're right, Pinetree. I propagate moss. It's slow to grow and quick to die. Sigh.
 
arctic
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07/19/2019 07:38PM
There have been campsites across the canoe country for thousands of years. A fire ring and flat sleeping spot are part of the landscape. Piles of shit, TP, soil erosion, and desecrated live trees are a product of the modern, me-first/I do-as-I-please culture.
 
GraniteCliffs
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07/19/2019 08:31PM
Wallle, thanks for posting. A good reminder about how fragile campsites are. I am glad they were nice guys but I am glad I did not camp there after their stay. Thirteen folks is a lot of wear and tear and crap. One wonders if they did not follow a most basic rule of party size if they would follow any of the other rules. My guess is that the folks that camp there after them could give a rats $&@ that they were nice guys.
 
bwcasolo
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07/20/2019 09:30AM
Jackfish: "Scat... “Lighten up, Francis.”

Good grief, man... seriously, did Walllee confront them, report them or do anything? He’s simply commenting here about an illegal camping situation that he saw. Quit looking for negative stuff. "

This post did not have to end up a huge internet battle, as many end up becoming. I think most of us would scratch our heads at what wallee saw as well.

Sorry guys who disagree, but there are rules, simple as that. they are generous rules. They are easy to follow.


 
mgraber
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07/20/2019 11:32AM
My wife and I got towed out with this group. We were behind them. You really had to see the mess they left behind at twin falls. There were fish carcasses in the water everywhere and it reeked of rotting fish. There were cigarette butts and bits of trash, there was furniture built with deck screws, etc. the fire was still burning. It was disgusting!

We rode back with six of the group. They were very friendly and said they had done the trip every year for several years. They ranged from 13 to around 55 years old. We camped at the 4 star site above falls on our last night and they were also loud. They had huge Yeti cooler full of fillets to take home. I’ve never seen more gear in my life...ever!!

On a similar note, we followed a trail of Marlboro cigarette butts up Poohbah Creek and our site on the northern islands had toilet paper EVERYWHERE! Needless to say, we did a LOT of cleaning up after other people.

To Scat, I don’t want to start anything, but shame on you for defending law breakers and vandals just because they were nice. Canoe country has deteriorated pretty drastically in recent years and there simply is no defense for defending the destruction on the basis of them being nice guys having a good time. There definitely is some responsibility with outfitter.
 
bwcasolo
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07/20/2019 04:22PM
There you have it, first hand how inconsiderate campers can impact someone else's experience. Rules are rules!
 
GraniteCliffs
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07/20/2019 04:55PM
The description of the campsite shows exactly what one would expect from a group like this.

As I said earlier, I couldn't care less if the group was cool. You could predict the demolition of the campsite. My comment above did, and that is why, yes, we do focus and comment on these observations that we make. If we want to preserve what we have, and I do, turning a blind eye to groups like this is inexcusable.
 
Zwater
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07/20/2019 05:42PM
Yes this group's actions were inexcusable, but is this thread just getting overbearing? Just like the jet ski thread? Things happen everday in life that people are not happy with. Let it go. Let's talk about canoeing, camping, fishing and blueberries. :)
 
07/20/2019 06:10PM
If anyone from that group is reading this, please make it a teachable moment for the rest of your crew.
 
Mocha
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07/20/2019 09:59PM
Definitely the outfitter should go in and clean this up.
 
Portage99
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07/20/2019 10:16PM
I admit I find it very difficult to deal with this type of thing. And, very difficult to let it go. The reason is the DAMAGE combined with the selfishness/complete lack of regard for others and for PLACE. I find it sad and leaves me sort of soul struck.

The problem is that the damage can be permanent. We have a very fragile area near my house. It has been overrun with people due to internet attention. I witnessed three kids pulling fragile plants and sandstone out in handfuls and throwing it into a creek. The parents were kissing under a waterfall. I said something to the kids, who promptly ignored me. The parents looked embarrassed and gathered the kids and left. The damage they did in 15 minutes blew my mind. I have been advocating for restricting # of visitors to this area-I will gladly wait my turn. Boundaries are needed.

I do believe that with proper education, this does not have to happen. However, the trick is tailoring the education to something that matters to this type of camper. I do believe these people were nice people who have something in their brains that make them think this is okay. Any education has to have something that matters to them. Sometimes seems impossible.
 
Jackfish
Moderator
 
07/23/2019 08:13AM
Walllee, in your OP, you said you didn't want to name the outfitter. Have you contacted them about this group?
 
07/23/2019 08:59AM
I did not. The outfitter I used was going to contact the outfitter. It sounded like there had been other issues with the outfitter in question.
 
AmarilloJim
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07/23/2019 10:10AM
Maybe a report to the park service would be in order.
 
mutz
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07/23/2019 11:43AM
Not sure why the outfitter isn’t being named here. If he knew how they were camping then apparently he condones this type of behavior. I’m not quite sure who is the worst offender the campers or the outfitter if he knew.
 
Atrain
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07/23/2019 11:48AM
scat: "I guess I have been through too much and seen too many friends die and get hurt on the job lately to care if some nice guys from Kentucky want to have fun in their own way. Driving around Chicago today I saw three people honk when someone didn’t immediately accelerate when a green light came on, two people flip someone off cuz they apparently were in their way to turn left. I mean, who cares. Go on your own way and be happy. I would never flip someone off, and don’t really care if someone cheeses out at a stoplight. Nor do I care if a group of nice guys from Kentucky break the rules. That is on them. If it doesn’t ruin your ride, just go on with your own self. What does posting about it here accomplish. No prob, if that makes you happy. All I’m sayin.


Cheers, scat"


I'm with Scat. I have also seen plenty of small groups do way more damage than larger groups. The assumption that they trashed the place is misguided. Smile, wave, and move on knowing that some nice people from kentucky drove 18 hours across the country and patronized a local outfitter just to enjoy some time in the woods.
 
Savage Voyageur
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07/23/2019 12:43PM
I see read lots of blame to the outfitter here. Lots of assumptions here don’t you think?
 
MikeinMpls
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07/23/2019 01:18PM
Atrain: "scat: "I guess I have been through too much and seen too many friends die and get hurt on the job lately to care if some nice guys from Kentucky want to have fun in their own way. Driving around Chicago today I saw three people honk when someone didn’t immediately accelerate when a green light came on, two people flip someone off cuz they apparently were in their way to turn left. I mean, who cares. Go on your own way and be happy. I would never flip someone off, and don’t really care if someone cheeses out at a stoplight. Nor do I care if a group of nice guys from Kentucky break the rules. That is on them. If it doesn’t ruin your ride, just go on with your own self. What does posting about it here accomplish. No prob, if that makes you happy. All I’m sayin.



Cheers, scat"



I'm with Scat. I have also seen plenty of small groups do way more damage than larger groups. The assumption that they trashed the place is misguided. Smile, wave, and move on knowing that some nice people from kentucky drove 18 hours across the country and patronized a local outfitter just to enjoy some time in the woods. "


Swing and a miss. The rule is not "no more than nine, except if you're really nice and drove 18 hours to get there."

I've seen groups of two trash a site, and I've seen groups of nine "raking" the dirt with downed branches so their bootprints didn't show. The point is that the rules exist there for a reason. The maximum group size rule exists because the larger the group, the larger the potential impact. In other words, large groups are harder on a site than a smaller group. That's not rocket surgery.

Mike
 
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mgraber
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07/23/2019 01:46PM
Atrain: "scat: "I guess I have been through too much and seen too many friends die and get hurt on the job lately to care if some nice guys from Kentucky want to have fun in their own way. Driving around Chicago today I saw three people honk when someone didn’t immediately accelerate when a green light came on, two people flip someone off cuz they apparently were in their way to turn left. I mean, who cares. Go on your own way and be happy. I would never flip someone off, and don’t really care if someone cheeses out at a stoplight. Nor do I care if a group of nice guys from Kentucky break the rules. That is on them. If it doesn’t ruin your ride, just go on with your own self. What does posting about it here accomplish. No prob, if that makes you happy. All I’m sayin.



Cheers, scat"



I'm with Scat. I have also seen plenty of small groups do way more damage than larger groups. The assumption that they trashed the place is misguided. Smile, wave, and move on knowing that some nice people from kentucky drove 18 hours across the country and patronized a local outfitter just to enjoy some time in the woods. "


If you read my earlier post you can see that there was NO assumption on trashing the place, it was thoroughly trashed when we passed through. Absolutely disgusting, my wife was extremely upset about it, and we have seen plenty over the years. This was the worst. Please read the thread before posting. The trashing was confirmed. And to those defending the behavior, again, shame on you.
 
CityFisher74
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07/23/2019 01:50PM
I feel for your recent losses and tough life situations, Scat. All must be held accountable, though, including charming individuals. When the mine is eventually up and running and Antifigosta makes a mistake, we mustn't let them ruin the environment simply because their PR folks are charming, nice individuals. All must be held accountable, and accountability begins with observation and discussion.

Perhaps simply practice what you preach - some drivers are slow to accelerate when the light turns green, and some BWCA.com members post observations of rule breaking and other tomfoolery. Perhaps use your technique of not getting upset at drivers and do the same when you come across a post you don't agree with - let it go.
 
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