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climbon
member (18)member
 
08/02/2020 03:00PM
We are looking for a last minute family trip mid-august. Not much available. we are 2 adults, 1 kid & a dog in 1 canoe & 1 kayak. Considering Saganaga. I'm a little worried about being annoyed by motors. Since I am paddling the canoe with my 9 year old (who is very good, but still only 9) and the dog & gear, I won't be wining any races. Wife will be in her kayak. I would consider getting a shuttle/tow out to American Point to avoid the motor traffic. But maybe being on a motor lake is not a big deal. You all have any experience you can share?
 
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MikeinMpls
distinguished member(674)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/03/2020 10:35AM
If you're on Sag you will hear motors. It's often windy and the wind may drown out the noise to a certain extent, but they are still there. Additionally, the boats leave wakes, and many of the motor boaters don't care about their wake and its effect on canoes and kayaks.

I like the tow idea. I think it will be money well spent.

Mike
sedges
distinguished member(622)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/03/2020 10:45AM
Yeah you will hear and see motor boats, but they are rarely zooming around like you would have on a lake with skiers, etc. I have never been disturbed much by wakes on Sag, only in the Seagull River headed out to the lake. If you are planning to stay on the lake there are a lot of nice campsites in the islands. If you are planning to basecamp on Saganaga a tow to American Point takes you past the islands. I am pretty sure a tow will drop you in the islands. The islands and east are like a much smaller lake wind-wise.
08/03/2020 10:46AM
I second doing the Tow. It may seem a little spendy, but I always figure my vacation time is pretty important and making the most of it is certainly worth the added expense. Between the motor noise, wake danger, and potential for dangerous wave conditions I think you would be glad you spend the $$.

Are you saying the only permit available is Sag only?
climbon
member (18)member
 
08/03/2020 10:51AM
Cricket67: "I second doing the Tow. It may seem a little spendy, but I always figure my vacation time is pretty important and making the most of it is certainly worth it. Better the motor noise, wake danger, and potential for dangerous wave conditions I think you would be glad you spend the $$.


Are you saying the only permit available is Sag only? "


Well it's not the only permit available, but it looks like it's the best option for a group with a 9 year old and a kayak. Looking to start around the 16th, if you see something that looks better.
08/03/2020 10:58AM
climbon: "Cricket67: "I second doing the Tow. It may seem a little spendy, but I always figure my vacation time is pretty important and making the most of it is certainly worth it. Between the motor noise, wake danger, and potential for dangerous wave conditions I think you would be glad you spend the $$.



Are you saying the only permit available is Sag only? "



Well it's not the only permit available, but it looks like it's the best option for a group with a 9 year old and a kayak. Looking to start around the 16th, if you see something that looks better."


Understood. Another option would be to get a tow to Red Rock. The boats do not go into the last bay before the portage into Red Rock Lake. You could also venture from there to the bay going towards Roy Lake.
Or get a two to Sag Falls and find an island campsite on the far Eastern part of the lake like was mentioned in one of the other responses.
bobbernumber3
distinguished member(1513)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/03/2020 05:15PM
Is Seagull Lake an option? I would recommend Seagull Outfitters for a tow on Sag or Seagull.
dogwoodgirl
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08/03/2020 09:04PM



Well it's not the only permit available, but it looks like it's the best option for a group with a 9 year old and a kayak. Looking to start around the 16th, if you see something that looks better."

What about Hog Creek? It's available on that date.....No matter how good your 9 yr old is, Sag is a pretty big lake

climbon
member (18)member
 
08/03/2020 09:32PM
Yes, I was just looking at Hog creek. I think that will be a better option.
shock
distinguished member(3862)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/04/2020 03:37PM
climbon: "Yes, I was just looking at Hog creek. I think that will be a better option." probably a good choice & many other good options out there. , Sag can get dicey in a small boat little lone a canoe or kayak.
heck i've been through seagull over 20X and that lake can still get me very concerned with an experienced front man. be careful be safe ;)
08/05/2020 12:09PM
2nd on going to Seagull. If you are concerned about boat motors you might consider the Red Rocks route. You would have to portage but you can get the tow to American Point then drop down into Red Rocks.

Here is a link to the Red Rocks Base Camp route by Seagull Outfitters.
Red Rocks Base Camp
climbon
member (18)member
 
08/05/2020 12:16PM
I really like the Red Rocks idea. Will keep that in mind for a future trip. Due to the extra drive time, limited time frame, logistics of a tow, etc., we opted for Hog Creek EP into Parent Lake instead. I think this will be a great trip for us. I am really excited to put our new canoe (Bell Northwind 17) and my wife's new kayak (Current Designs Kestrel) to the test on a multi day trip. Time to get maps and start planning!



bposteve
distinguished member (159)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/05/2020 01:26PM
Holy cow, is that a showroom or your garage!?

I know you've moved on already but just adding my thoughts for anyone else with your same question. Did the Granite River loop this year and was my first time on Sag. The boats didn't bother me at all, noise was minimal as they're all moving fairly slowly, I assume because of the danger of submerged rocks. Did encounter a few boats in the narrows and they all slowed down to minimize wakes. Some did a better job than others, but all at least showed the attempt at courtesy.

Now my impression of the lake is that it would be an awesome destination for a luxury type base camp trip and a tow in would certainly enhance that option so you wouldn't be worried about paddling and overloaded and under-powered canoe with a youngster up front. We were only on the East end but the day trip possibilities looked pretty dang good, especially if you have a kid who would like to explore islands (I assume that's every kid but maybe yours is different).

To sum it up, if you go looking for a 'true' BWCA experience and want solitude you might be disappointed, but if you know what you're getting into it is a truly beautiful and accessible big lake.
GeoFisher
distinguished member(1538)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/05/2020 02:36PM
climbon: "We are looking for a last minute family trip mid-august. Not much available. we are 2 adults, 1 kid & a dog in 1 canoe & 1 kayak. Considering Saganaga. I'm a little worried about being annoyed by motors. Since I am paddling the canoe with my 9 year old (who is very good, but still only 9) and the dog & gear, I won't be wining any races. Wife will be in her kayak. I would consider getting a shuttle/tow out to American Point to avoid the motor traffic. But maybe being on a motor lake is not a big deal. You all have any experience you can share?"

If you do sag, definitely head for the non motor areas. An american point dropoff is great, and maybe head to first, second, third bay areas. There are not a lot of campsites down that way, so you might get in a tough spot on finding a site, and having to portage over Monument Portage.......

If you do manage to pick up a site in the numbered bay area, those are very nice for paddling and some decent fishing.

Zephyr used to be one of my favorite BWCA areas........

Have FUN.
thegildedgopher
distinguished member(760)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
08/05/2020 02:44PM
My experience on sag this year, in a tiny motorboat with freeboard similar to a canoe—- I thought our battle would be with the wind and waves on big open water. No problem there (winds 10-15). 99% of trippers in motorboats are putting around, either trolling or trying to avoid rocks. The boats that flew past us and rocked us with their wakes were all towboats or fishing guides who knew the waters well. Outside the corridor we had no issues.
 
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