BWCA Misquah to Little Trout portage - a video Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
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01/12/2022 10:15AM  
For anyone considering a route through the area of Little Trout Lake, the portage from Little Trout to Misquah carries a reputation as one of the toughest in the park. I know there are plenty that are barely maintained and/or much longer, but this one has a bit of everything uncomfortable...from hills, to mud, to slippery boardwalks and more boulders and rocks than a person could count, it's no picnic.

I went in at Ram Lake and up to Little Trout and then north of there a few years ago on a solo. I did this portage on the morning after my first night staying on Little Trout, en route to Horseshoe. I first walked it with my large pack, then went back to get my canoe. Being empty handed, I figured I'd pull out my GoPro and just film the walk.

It's almost exactly 3/4's of a mile long and took me just about 20 minutes. I narrated/mused along the walk, but the audio is pretty terrible so it's hard to hear me. Mostly nonsense anyway...the idea was mainly just to show curious people the terrain of this portage.

Anyway...take a look if you're one of those curious people!

Misquah to Little Trout portage walk
 
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TuscaroraBorealis
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01/12/2022 12:01PM  
Cool! Thanks for sharing.

Perhaps you could also post this video in the Portage and campsites forum so it's easier to find/reference once the initial 'buzz' dies down.
chessie
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01/15/2022 02:47PM  
Wow - flashbacks! We did this route years ago with two friends who had a heavy old alum canoe. It still stands out as the toughest portage in my book. Those boulders! Thanks for posting!
01/15/2022 04:03PM  
I have walked it on a day trip - it's a doozy.
straighthairedcurly
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01/15/2022 06:26PM  
So funny that I remember almost nothing about that portage. I did it in the direction Misquah to Little Trout on my first solo trip. I was in a high state of anxiety over a problem with my SPOT. The portage is a blur to me. Also probably didn't stand out to me because I had done the David to Kiskadinna portage earlier in the trip...can't even see your feet on long stretches of that one due to being overgrown.
scramble4a5
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01/16/2022 02:00PM  
boonie: "I have walked it on a day trip - it's a doozy. "

Did the same and it’s in my top 2 worst portages.
lindylair
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01/16/2022 05:16PM  
We did that route and those portages many years ago(I am talking 70s with heavy aluminum canoes and no such thing as lightweight gear) with a destination of Vista lake. Vista lived up to our expectations but we, as a group, refused to take those portages back to the vehicle which was the original plan. We spent the next few days trying to come up with a plan to get out of there another way and ultimately ended up taking the Morgan lake portage to the road. Myself and a buddy then walked 7 miles back to the vehicle and came back and picked up the other guys and our gear.

It's the worst in my book of all I have ever been on and that's been quite a few. I'm sure we could have made it just fine but we sure as heck didn't want to do it.

paddlingredrock
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01/16/2022 05:48PM  
Thank u for posting this! I tried this portage with my boy in 2012. It had been raining for three days straight and when we got to that eight minute mark the entire trail was underwater about knee deep. After wading for a while we opted to pass and went back to Misquah and stayed on Vista. The trip really turned out to be a survival mission because it was mid-May and cold and rainy. Even the portage from Vista into horseshoe was completely underwater and it It looked and sounded like a western white water stream. When we finally made it out we heard that highway 61 north of two harbors was closed due to water over the highway. At any rate you have convinced me to never try that again. Big thanks!
Speckled
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01/18/2022 07:50AM  
treehorn: "For anyone considering a route through the area of Little Trout Lake, the portage from Little Trout to Misquah carries a reputation as one of the toughest in the park. I know there are plenty that are barely maintained and/or much longer, but this one has a bit of everything uncomfortable...from hills, to mud, to slippery boardwalks and more boulders and rocks than a person could count, it's no picnic.

I went in at Ram Lake and up to Little Trout and then north of there a few years ago on a solo. I did this portage on the morning after my first night staying on Little Trout, en route to Horseshoe. I first walked it with my large pack, then went back to get my canoe. Being empty handed, I figured I'd pull out my GoPro and just film the walk.

It's almost exactly 3/4's of a mile long and took me just about 20 minutes. I narrated/mused along the walk, but the audio is pretty terrible so it's hard to hear me. Mostly nonsense anyway...the idea was mainly just to show curious people the terrain of this portage.

Anyway...take a look if you're one of those curious people!

Misquah to Little Trout portage walk "


Labeled as "The most difficult portage in the park", only by those who've never carried the Seagull to JAP portage.
HighPlainsDrifter
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01/22/2022 09:19PM  

Thanks for the memories (September 2008). My son and I entered at Bower Trout and exited at Ram after looping through Long Island Lake. We were nearing the end of our trip. On our trip, the series of portages coming from Brule to Town Lakes through Cam, Gasket, and Vesper Lakes seemed more difficult than Misquah to Little Trout.
 
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