BWCA Water Levels - Round Lake to Cross Bay Lake Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
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member (12)member
08/12/2021 06:17PM  
Does anyone have any information on the water levels? Is Cross Bay accessible via Round Lake to Ham to Cross Bay? That route is pretty rocky through the narrows and I am starting my trip next week. Thanks for any and all information.
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distinguished member(850)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/12/2021 07:37PM  
If you have a Cross Bay Lake permit(#50) you will be starting at the Cross River Access, not Round Lake. The Cross River to Ham Lake may involve some careful navigation to avoid shallow spots, but I have never heard of it being difficult.

A call to Tuscarora Outfitters might ease your mind. They run day trips down the Cross River pretty often. They would know exactly what conditions you will find.
distinguished member (352)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/13/2021 05:31AM  
Are you talking about Round Lake-missing Link-Snipe-cross bay entering thru EP 51? Snipe-Cross Bay is the water dependent portage out of that route….my guess is that it is a mess…..however, as Sedges suggested, call Tuscarora Outfitters…..That is one of the day trips they recommend….That is their backyard.

08/13/2021 04:06PM  
Went from Cross River EP down to Long Island at the very end of July.

Yes, water levels are very low. It makes the landings tricky and any creek or shallow water that would typically feature boulders underneath...they aren't all underneath anymore.

From Cross River to Long Island, the biggest pain was going from Rib to Lower George. There is an outlet out of Rib that you would typically paddle up about 25 rods to the portage landing to LG. We weren't able to paddle any of that. We got beached in muck right as the lake narrows to a river. Had to pull through all that, then it changed to a boulder field as you near the portage landing...still can't paddle though. So be prepared to get wet.

We attempted to go south out of Long Island to Gordon, and that was almost impassible. A motivated group could certainly do it, but the Long Island River, especially after the little 5-rod portage was a total minefield of boulders. Couldn't find a way to paddle around them, and pulling the boat was no fun...balancing on slippery rocks or stepping into some very deep spots.
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