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      Why do some call it "the" Quetico?     
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09/15/2020 10:29AM
Just curious, not wanting to start anything nutty. But I frequently see on many boards, etc paddlers often say going to "The Quetico". I've never seen it officially called anything more than "Quetico Provincial Park".

I've never heard anyone say, "The Wabakimi, The Woodland Caribou, The Algonquin, The Temagami".

So why "The Quetico"?

 
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bottomtothetap
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09/15/2020 10:58AM
Maybe for the same reason they call it THE Ohio State University! :)
 
Savage Voyageur
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09/15/2020 11:03AM
Well, I say I’m going to the Boundary waters all the time. How is that different? I can see people saying the Quetico. Kind of like saying going to The Yukon. I think people capitalize “The” to give the destination a special meaning. This is why you will never read I’m headed to The Minneapolis, not that special. Just another urban city. Nothing like The Quetico or The BWCA.
 
nofish
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09/15/2020 11:09AM
People also say they are going to THE BWCA or THE Boundary waters vs saying I'm going to Boundary Waters.

Probably just some grammar thing where certain things sound correct one way versus the other.
 
inspector13
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09/15/2020 11:10AM

...and the hospital instead of "I'm going to hospital to see the new baby." Like they do across the pond.

 
09/15/2020 11:14AM
Actually an excellent question. At some point I thought it had to do with proper nouns, but that didn't make sense either. I found this tidbit on the interwebs...

WHAT IS AN ARTICLE?
An article has the same basic function as an adjective in that it is used to describe a noun. There are two different articles in the English language: the and a/an. The is used to describe a specific noun, whereas a/an is used to describe a more general noun. For this reason, the is also referred to as a definite article, and a/an is referred to as an indefinite article.

The names of geographical places are specific nouns and, therefore, may
require definite articles. Do use “the” before the following specific nouns:
• Names of rivers, oceans, and seas
the Mississippi River, the Navesink River
the Atlantic Ocean, the Dead Sea
• Geographical areas
the Mediterranean, the Northern Hemisphere, the South
• Deserts, forests, gulfs, and peninsulas
the Gobi Desert, the Amazon
the Gulf of Mexico, the Baja Peninsula
• Groups of lakes, mountain ranges, and chains of islands
the Great Lakes, the Andes, the Rocky Mountains
the Canary Islands, the Virgin Islands, the Bahamas

However, no article is necessary before the following specific nouns:
• Singular names of countries or territories
Canada, Spain, Mexico, Puerto Rico
• Names of cities, towns or states
New York City, West Long Branch, New Jersey

This is a great example of many people knowing what 'sounds' right but really not knowing the rule itself.

If I say to someone I'm going to The Duluth to see one of Great Lakes is sounds hideous but they may not know exactly why.

Now back the The Quetico (and the BWCA) - it really appears these are exceptions to the rule. It is the proper name of a park. We don't say I'm going to The Yellowstone or The Split Rock Lighthouse State Park (although I think most people would say "The Split Rock Lighthouse" if they were just referring to the structure and not the park - which also appears to be breaking the rules here)

I feel sorry for all those people trying to learn English.

 
andym
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09/15/2020 12:11PM
In Southern California they call roads “the 101.” In northern California we just say “101.” It’s good. It helps us identify Dodgers fans.
 
09/15/2020 12:41PM
OK. Interesting.

Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?

For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol".
 
missmolly
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09/15/2020 01:01PM
Ah, I've found my people!

Sincerely,

Molly the Nerd
 
Banksiana
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09/15/2020 01:22PM
Veteran trippers use "The Q" to demonstrate their vast experience. Then folks with limited experience think its acceptable to say "The Quetico"; exposing their want of experience in this landscape......
 
TominMpls
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09/15/2020 02:07PM
There's a history of colonialism in using "the" around wild spaces. "The Congo" was a wild place to go to like "the Serengeti" or "the river" but when "Congo" became a country the "the" should have gone away; but it only slowly has done so.

"The Quetico" as a place would be the same until it became a proper place, "Quetico Provincial Park". At which point "Quetico" would be more correct. But if you continue to think of it as the Quetico, you'll call it that.
 
paddlinjoe
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09/15/2020 02:23PM
OneMatch: "Just curious, not wanting to start anything nutty. But I frequently see on many boards, etc paddlers often say going to "The Quetico". I've never seen it officially called anything more than "Quetico Provincial Park".

I've never heard anyone say, "The Wabakimi, The Woodland Caribou, The Algonquin, The Temagami".

So why "The Quetico"?

"


Those are people who went to "An" Ohio State
 
09/15/2020 02:41PM
Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.


Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?


For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."





The lake I live on was always lake on 5... the county named it new lake. I like listening to people pronouncing piragis and even Ely... E-lie... haha.
 
bottomtothetap
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09/15/2020 02:55PM
Banksiana: "Veteran trippers use "The Q" to demonstrate their vast experience. Then folks with limited experience think its acceptable to say "The Quetico"; exposing their want of experience in this landscape......"

and then you have those who really demonstrate their naivete by saying "kwe-TEEK-oh"
 
uqme2
member (39)member
 
09/15/2020 04:58PM
Quetico Superior: A Land Set Apart?
A.K.A. The BW/Q?
 
09/15/2020 05:33PM
I always say that way to be prententious just like an earlier poster used “The Ohio State” the same way, not sure why others do though...


T
 
straighthairedcurly
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09/15/2020 05:58PM
The Brits say "going to hospital", we say "going to the hospital". I see it as the same kind of language difference. Neither is right, neither is wrong.
 
OldTripper
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09/15/2020 06:08PM
Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.


Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?


For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."

I have often wondered this very thing myself.
I hope someone can answer it...
 
thegildedgopher
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09/15/2020 08:01PM
nctry: "Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.

Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?

For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."

The lake I live on was always lake on 5... the county named it new lake. I like listening to people pronouncing piragis and even Ely... E-lie... haha."

Piragis... those are the delicious fried dumplings from Eastern Europe right?!
 
09/15/2020 08:23PM
Q - Bdub. Thats all you really need to know to be honest. Lazy / shortcut / abbreviation, call it what you want but thats what it is really.
 
09/15/2020 08:26PM
OldTripper: "Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.



Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?



For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."

I have often wondered this very thing myself.
I hope someone can answer it..."


That's a stumper for me as well. I can only assume it has to do with immigrants in MN at the time. After all, we have people from Ireland (I think thats where Nessy lives) calling Loch Ness (Lake Ness) vs Ness Lake. Guess it depends on who's turn it was to name something lol.
 
09/15/2020 09:00PM
A quick check on the Google says it indeed is just Quetico. The Google can't be wrong.
 
MichiganMan
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09/15/2020 09:31PM
So why "The Quetico"?

I'm guilty of this. Heard a buddy of mine saying it long before I ever went there, so that's where I picked it up. Honestly it does sound a lot cooler, so imma stick with it.
 
MN_Lindsey
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09/15/2020 10:07PM
Who knows...
When I lived in California - I always said, "I'm going to take the 101, to the PCH, and merge onto the 5... on the way home though I think I'm going to take the 405... " All highways/freeways are prefaced with the word "the"... it would be so weird to say Oh just take 101 to 405... ewww. I hated typing that...

....but now that I'm a Minnesotan [again] I NEVER say, I'm going to take the 35 to the 694, to the 61... that's just nuts.

Your official answer is... just because.

 
GraniteCliffs
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09/15/2020 10:32PM
I grew up going to The Quetico. Twenty years ago I met a guy that is now a very close friend of mine. He always went to Quetico. I have been to the Q with him every year since I met him and we still have not resolved this life and death issue.
As a kid many of my classmates simply said “let’s go Ely” or “let’s go Town”. Sounded right back then on the Iron Range.
 
09/15/2020 11:56PM
GraniteCliffs: "I grew up going to The Quetico. Twenty years ago I met a guy that is now a very close friend of mine. He always went to Quetico. I have been to the Q with him every year since I met him and we still have not resolved this life and death issue.
As a kid many of my classmates simply said “let’s go Ely” or “let’s go Town”. Sounded right back then on the Iron Range. "


In college we shorted these even more...In our case it was "Go Hardees" . Based on the delivery it could either be a suggestion, a question, or a command.
 
billconner
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09/16/2020 05:51AM
minnmike: " A quick check on the Google says it indeed is just Quetico. The Google can't be wrong."

LOL
 
marsonite
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09/16/2020 06:12AM
Anyone ever been to the Yellowstone?
 
fraxinus
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09/16/2020 08:17AM
okinaw55: "OldTripper: "Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.



Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?



For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."

I have often wondered this very thing myself.
I hope someone can answer it..."



That's a stumper for me as well. I can only assume it has to do with immigrants in MN at the time. After all, we have people from Ireland (I think thats where Nessy lives) calling Loch Ness (Lake Ness) vs Ness Lake. Guess it depends on who's turn it was to name something lol."


My guess would be that it might be influenced by the French name for the lake. Lac La Croix, Lac Courte Oreilles in WI, Lac La Belle and so on.....
 
Porkeater
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09/16/2020 08:33AM
I've heard the area as a whole referred to as the Quetico-Superior region, so maybe using the "the" got its start that way. Maybe it pre-dates the formal establishment of the park.
 
Argo
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09/16/2020 10:06AM
Living in Ontario, I've never heard anyone refer to it as "The Quetico" unless I'm on a bulletin board with Americans.

Talk to anyone from what is often referred to as "The Ukraine" and the citizens just say "Ukraine". In fact I believe their was even a concerted effort by them to educate the rest of the world to call them "Ukraine".

Tourists to the Algarve region in Portugal always refer to it as "The Algarve" for some reason but the Portuguese simply say "Algarve".

So to my friends from The America, it's just Quetico ;)
 
gymcoachdon
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09/16/2020 10:30AM
My take, for what it is worth...
The whole area was known as the Quetico/Superior area before the parks were started, so maybe that is why it has held it's article.
Different languages, French and Spanish notably, have the modifier swapped from the English language. For example, "red car" in English, "voiture rouge" in French, and "carro rojo" in Spanish. Most of the early explorations were by people using these three languages. That certainly is the case with Lac LaCroix, but may have ties to the others as well?

Fun questions though!
 
scat
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09/16/2020 10:53AM
One time I mad a half assed attempt at learning Polish, I got to conjugating verbs and I was like, wow, this ain’t happenin. They use no articles. If we say, she reads a book. They say. Reads book. The variation of the verb gives the gender, tense, everything, so each verb has a billion variations. Not to mention trying to pronounce the words in general. I would venture to say learning Polish is an almost impossible task in one person’s lifetime.
Go Ukraine. Awesome Stosh! Have a nice time on your trip to the Ukraine. Let me know if you want to go to the Boundary Waters on a canoe trip.
Go canoe. Fish fish. Mush mush smush mush.
 
fishonfishoff
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09/16/2020 11:06AM
marsonite: "Anyone ever been to the Yellowstone?"
I tried this spring but THE COVID said noway. So instead I went to THE BWCA!
FOFO
 
andym
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09/16/2020 11:40AM
MN_Lindsey just proved my point about southern and northern California. While 101 is in both regions, 405 is only in SoCal, and no one in northern California callS 1 the Pacific Coast Highway. In fact, in our town, if given a name, it is called Cabrillo Highway. But Cabrillo is a very local name.

So when they said people say “the 405” in California that is only true about SoCal.
 
Basspro69
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09/16/2020 10:27PM
bottomtothetap: "Maybe for the same reason they call it THE Ohio State University! :)" +1 Lolololololol
 
obsoleted
 
09/17/2020 10:08AM
Possibly due to size...back here (NY), it is 'The' Adirondacks, 'The' Berkshires, 'The ' Smokies, 'The' Green Mountains, all large parks with many access points and activities. Smaller parks don't get 'The'...Cuyuhoga Valley National Park, Taughannock Falls State Park, Watkins Glen, Letchworth...etc., all much smaller with pretty much one or two things to do.
 
Abbey
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09/17/2020 11:14PM
andym: "MN_Lindsey just proved my point about southern and northern California. While 101 is in both regions, 405 is only in SoCal, and no one in northern California callS 1 the Pacific Coast Highway. In fact, in our town, if given a name, it is called Cabrillo Highway. But Cabrillo is a very local name.


So when they said people say “the 405” in California that is only true about SoCal. "


And Phoenix (east LA). I lived in Tucson for awhile, and our disdain for east LA is not unlike your disdain for LA proper. If I never hear “the 10” again, it will be too soon.
 
Abbey
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09/17/2020 11:17PM
What I really want to know is why we collectively do not emphasize the WILDERNESS part of the BWCAW. Is there any part of the BWCA that is not the BWCAW? You can debate whether the motor zones deserve their second dubya, but my non-lawyer understanding is that it has all been BWCAW since 1978. The BWCAW, Da BWCAW, das BWCAW, or BWCAW......it’s the wilderness aspect that I truly love.

Someday, I’ll get to Da Q, eh.
 
scat
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09/18/2020 04:26PM
All I know is I just cut the grass. I waited too long and it rained too much, so it was a pain in the a$$. I hate the grass. I’ve smoked grass. Grass by itself isn’t too bad, it’s nice to sit on when someone else has cut it for you, but when it morphs into the grass, that’s when I have a problem with it.
 
Portage99
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09/19/2020 05:20PM
andym: "In Southern California they call roads “the 101.” In northern California we just say “101.” It’s good. It helps us identify Dodgers fans. "

Cue SNL's The Californians. : )
 
andym
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09/19/2020 05:35PM
Portage99:
Cue SNL's The Californians. : )"


Absolutely.
 
billconner
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09/19/2020 06:02PM
What next? The Wabakimi? The Woodlands (WCPP)? The Algonquin?
 
GraniteCliffs
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09/19/2020 07:10PM
I am old dog that can still learn new tricks. I have spent the past 50 years of canoeing in THE Quetico. I grew up just south of the border and that is how we learned to say The Quetico.
However, if Argo says he lives in Ontario and it is always called just Quetico by the Canadians that is convincing and good enough for me.
So in two weeks when I am back up in the BW and on the border I will be sure to gaze across the water at........QUETICO.
Now if I can just remember the switch during my conversations about my favorite place in the world:QUETICO.
 
missmolly
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09/19/2020 07:23PM
billconner: "What next? The Wabakimi? The Woodlands (WCPP)? The Algonquin?"

What's next is the the billconner.
 
09/20/2020 12:01PM
billconner: "What next? The Wabakimi? The Woodlands (WCPP)? The Algonquin?"

Whoaaa...Slow down...one must earn the right to put “The” in front of the name...you can’t just start doing it for everything. Watch Monday night football...somehow when players say “The Ohio State” it is just pretentious enough to make you hate and love it at the same time. When other players do it, it just sounds like they are trying to hard. No one can get away with “The Florida State” or “The Iowa” no...that is trying to hard and silly. The only player to ever get away with it is Jared Allen when he said “The Culinary Academy” right after a fellow team mate had said “The Ohio State.” Now that had the proper sarcasm and silliness to be acceptable...

All jokes aside, I think it is multi factorial for “The Quetico”. Some of it is that is what people have called it for a long time, I’ve even seen magazine and newspaper articles use that term. So it just stuck out of habit and hearing it. That’s where I picked it up. I do think there is a pretentious part to it as well. When I first heard about The Quetico I was on a portage and this couple was talking down to us because we thought this mud sucking 240 rod beast of a portage was tough in 95 degree weather in June (they hadn’t done it yet)...they kept bragging about how they were Quetico veterans and everything in the boundary waters was easy...Quetico Snobs we called them :) So I am sure there is a part of some people that “The Quetico” is snobbish perhaps. Then a little of both...I do like “The Quetico” more than the BWCAW...it is “The” place to go :)

T
 
gravelroad
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09/20/2020 09:26PM
Spartan2: "OK. Interesting.

Now another one--why are some lakes referred to as "Lake____" , and almost all others are just ____________Lake?

For example, "Poplar Lake", "Clearwater Lake", "Caribou Lake". Or then you have "Lake Insula", "Lake Carol"."

Solely because I’m one of Miss Molly’s people by trade, and feeling particularly evil this evening, I commend to your attention the following example of federalism at its finest:


1. The state map for Lake Isabella State Forest - note the name appended to the body of water in question.


2. The feds’ version, as it appears here on BWCA.com and elsewhere.
 
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