BWCA Entering Quetico thru Moose River North Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
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Bwana
member (10)member
 
02/01/2022 09:43PM  
I've been to Quetico and the BWCA plenty, but I'm not sure how to enter Quetico Park through Moose River north entry. I've entered through Prairie Portage and Cache Bay previously and I have a BWCA permit for Moose River this May.

Where can we get cleared (ranger station or customs) to enter Quetico by canoe from here? I'd like to enter Bottle or McAree points. Thanks.
 
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Gaidin53
distinguished member (330)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/01/2022 09:54PM  
Id assume you’d have to paddle to the Lac La Croix ranger station. Which is a ways further. I’m not certain if That was open last year and some debate on this year. RABC permit’s have not been started again since they were closed for Covid. Anyone paddling into the Southern entry points is required to have an RABC which is why they basically closed the Southern entry points last year.

The Quetico board on here might get you better answers but we’ve been debating for a while on that board whether the Southern Quetico entry points will open this year.

Ryan

Jackfish
Moderator
 
02/01/2022 10:38PM  
The bottom line is this... you can't. RABC permits aren't being offered and the Sand Point Canadian Customs station is closed. You couldn't enter with an RABC permit alone anyway (you have to stop at a ranger station to pick up your permit) and the Sand Point customs station is WAY too far of a paddle to even consider.

Sorry, but you're out of luck with Plan A.

Now, if you'd like to do a Plan B, you could drive to International Falls, cross the border into Fort Frances, thereby passing through Customs, then drive 1-1/2 hours east to Flanders Road, turn south and drive the 45 miles on gravel to the Lac La Croix ranger station, pick up your permit and go into Quetico that way.
02/02/2022 07:13AM  
The previous answers are spot on. Prior to COVID, most folks (guessing 97%+) that entered McAree or Bottle did so via a tow from Crane Lake. They stop at Sand Point CBSA to clear Canadian customs first, then head to the LLC ranger station to get Q permits, and then get dropped off at the EP. No RABC or BWCA permit required —> different than the Prairie Portage and Cache Bay approach.

Bwana
member (10)member
 
02/02/2022 10:15AM  
Jackfish: "The bottom line is this... you can't. RABC permits aren't being offered and the Sand Point Canadian Customs station is closed. You couldn't enter with an RABC permit alone anyway (you have to stop at a ranger station to pick up your permit) and the Sand Point customs station is WAY too far of a paddle to even consider.


Sorry, but you're out of luck with Plan A.


Now, if you'd like to do a Plan B, you could drive to International Falls, cross the border into Fort Frances, thereby passing through Customs, then drive 1-1/2 hours east to Flanders Road, turn south and drive the 45 miles on gravel to the Lac La Croix ranger station, pick up your permit and go into Quetico that way."


So let me get this straight, The closest ranger station by water is Lac La Croix. If Canada does begin allowing RABC permits, can we paddle to that station across the international border to pick up our Park permit and show our RABC; then enter enter the southern border points? Currently, it appears from the Quetico permitting online site, that no permits for all of the park have been released - is that true also - even through Prairie Portage. Sorry for my confused questioning.



Gaidin53
distinguished member (330)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 10:47AM  
Permits for Quetico become available five months to the day from your entry date. I assume you are probably looking for after July 2nd for your permit.

I really don't believe the RABCs are going to start again this year, which is why I’m booking a northern Quetico entry for this year so I can drive through a border station and pick up my permit at a northern Quetico entry station.

If RABC permits by some act of divine providence do start again, then I think you could paddle up to the LLC ranger station. I did the distance from LLC right by the portage out of Agnes up to the ranger station, and then back over to McAree lake. 23 miles of paddling to do that plan. I’ll include a screen shot modified to not show the source.

Ryan
schweady
distinguished member(7775)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
02/02/2022 11:17AM  
Things might be a bit easier if the LLC Canadian Ranger Station was still just north and east around the corner from the pictographs, at approx. N48 17.741 W91 59.722

In 1978, we were allowed to hole up there in their boathouse for lunch during a horrific storm until the ranger came down and told us that the lightning was done and we'd have to shove off. We fought our way over to site 169 in the scariest paddle of my life. Third day ever in the BW...
Jackfish
Moderator
 
02/02/2022 12:15PM  
Gaidin53: "If RABC permits by some act of divine providence do start again, then I think you could paddle up to the LLC ranger station. I did the distance from LLC right by the portage out of Agnes up to the ranger station, and then back over to McAree lake. 23 miles of paddling to do that plan. I’ll include a screen shot modified to not show the source.
Yes, when RABC permits are back being issued again, this is allowed. Lots of paddling, but it could be done.
Bwana
member (10)member
 
02/02/2022 12:19PM  
Thanks Ryan,
I did the math also; traveling to LLC ranger station from Agnes - too much open water and time for this to happen.
02/02/2022 12:20PM  
Bwana: "Jackfish: "The bottom line is this... you can't. RABC permits aren't being offered and the Sand Point Canadian Customs station is closed. You couldn't enter with an RABC permit alone anyway (you have to stop at a ranger station to pick up your permit) and the Sand Point customs station is WAY too far of a paddle to even consider.



Sorry, but you're out of luck with Plan A.



Now, if you'd like to do a Plan B, you could drive to International Falls, cross the border into Fort Frances, thereby passing through Customs, then drive 1-1/2 hours east to Flanders Road, turn south and drive the 45 miles on gravel to the Lac La Croix ranger station, pick up your permit and go into Quetico that way."



So let me get this straight, The closest ranger station by water is Lac La Croix. If Canada does begin allowing RABC permits, can we paddle to that station across the international border to pick up our Park permit and show our RABC; then enter enter the southern border points? Currently, it appears from the Quetico permitting online site, that no permits for all of the park have been released - is that true also - even through Prairie Portage. Sorry for my confused questioning.
"




To your first question, the Q LLC ranger station is the closest one to BWCA EP 16. One way to get to the LLC ranger station is by paddling from EP 16. Taking this route you would need to have an RABC permit (which are not currently available).

Quetico backcounty permits are currently available to reserve online for all entry points after May 20 and for the next 5 months or until either Sept 4, 11, or 18, depending on which ranger station you need to go through to get the issued permit. You can't reserve a Q permit online outside these dates. You can enter before May 20 or after the ranger station closes in Sept but you self permit there (fill out a form with the info, cc details to pay, etc). The Q ranger stations don't open until May 20 and they all close in Sept.

Quetico online reservations


A couple more comments that may address your confusion:

Firstly, the Quetico Rangers are not responsible for administering Canadian Customs. For example, the LLC Ranger station (staffed by LLC First Nation) doesn't check to make sure you have passed through Canadian Customs at Sand Point or are carrying a RABC permit. That's where you get the Q permit, that's it.

Secondly, with respect to accessing the Prairie Portage or Cache Bay entry points, there is no longer any Canadian Customs offices near these ranger stations. These went away years ago. Thus, the only way to legally enter Canada from the US in these areas is by having an RABC permit. I doubt they will ask if you have one and again, it isn't their responsibility to ensure you do. That's on you.
Bwana
member (10)member
 
02/02/2022 12:52PM  
Thanks everyone for responding to my original question about remote crossing to Quetico from the southern border. The only other question I have for now is about where to look, and how to stay informed of Canada potentially re-starting remote crossing permits. Bwana
02/02/2022 01:10PM  
Bwana: "Thanks everyone for responding to my original question about remote crossing to Quetico from the southern border. The only other question I have for now is about where to look, and how to stay informed of Canada potentially re-starting remote crossing permits. Bwana"


RABC
02/02/2022 03:43PM  
Bwana: "Thanks everyone for responding to my original question about remote crossing to Quetico from the southern border. The only other question I have for now is about where to look, and how to stay informed of Canada potentially re-starting remote crossing permits. Bwana"

Plander's link to the RABC site will keep you current, but you'll have to check it regularly. You should also consider a regular visit to the Quetico Forum, where the RABC and other border-crossing discussions have been popular in recent months.

TZ
 
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