BWCA Clearwater - Mountain - Moose route Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
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RustyCopperpot
  
02/02/2022 10:04AM  
I have an permit for Clearwater EP 62 in August. I'm considering trying to take Clearwater to Mountain to Moose. I've heard Moose Lake is one of the most remote and quiet lakes in the eastern BWCA, given the lack of road access and even no direct access on the Canadian side. Has anyone done the portage from Mountain to Moose? Seems like most folks go to Moose via the Fowl lakes off to the east.

Just wondering if anyone did that portage in the last couple years and what they thought of Moose overall. Reviews of the three portages from Mountain to Moose are many years old and report the portages to be really muddy. I'm wondering if they've been drier with the recent drought that we've been in for the last couple years. I've read that the fishing is pretty good on Mountain and Moose also. Thanks!
 
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straighthairedcurly
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02/02/2022 06:53PM  
I don't have any recent reports, but I will be heading through there on my solo in June. I will publish a trip report early July.
chessie
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02/02/2022 07:52PM  
Paddled these lakes last summer (1st week of August). From Mountain, the Lesser Cherry portage to Fan was, according to my journal, "....gross, mud-sucking loon SH_T." The apparent end of the portage, some boardwalk, led to a swamp (cue Talking Heads, "we're on a road to no-where..."). This led to a short back-track, a right-hand turn, & wading through knee deep loon doo doo to get to the actual end of the portage. The 40 r Vaseux portage and 140 r Great Cherry Portage are not mentioned in my journal. I believe they paled in comparison to the previously mentioned. We were worried about camp availability on Moose. Someone missed seeing the first site. The 2nd site down lake was occupied, and that was the ONLY site on the lake that was occupied! We had our choice of the remaining 3 sites. Both Mountain and Moose are beautiful lakes. I'd go back in a minute. The low water conditions extended many of the portages, or required some river-wading to find actual portage starting points. Have fun!
02/02/2022 08:10PM  
I'm doing this route in June. My route is going to be a loop though. We'll continue past Moose and by the Fowl EP therm back through East and West Pine. I'm looking forward to it.
Voyager
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02/03/2022 10:26AM  
I do this route every Sept. with the exception of last year. Some years, in low water, the one portage is extended at the far end. That is the muddy part. If water is normal you can launch and avoid it.
12/10/2022 11:58AM  
straighthairedcurly: "I don't have any recent reports, but I will be heading through there on my solo in June. I will publish a trip report early July."


Did you do your solo here? Thinking about traveling this area next summer...
zootownboarding
member (32)member
  
12/10/2022 06:54PM  
I've done them 3 times in last two years. in early June and late July last year. they are fine. Nothing to crazy about em
straighthairedcurly
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12/10/2022 08:40PM  
dogwoodgirl: "
straighthairedcurly: "I don't have any recent reports, but I will be heading through there on my solo in June. I will publish a trip report early July."



Did you do your solo here? Thinking about traveling this area next summer..."


Yes, I started at Duncan, camped on Rose for 2 nights. Then did the long portage and camped on Mountain. Traveled into Moose, the Fowls, and into East and West Pike (one night on each). I was going to drop down into Caribou, Alder, etc. and make my way back to West Bearskin via Flour, but I had been pushing and doing really long days (as training for the Border Challenge) and was tired out, so I exited via Clearwater and walked the Clearwater Road back to West Bearskin. I am way behind on my trip reports but can hopefully gat caught up soon. It was a lovely trip. Rose was the only place I really saw many people. Everywhere else was quiet except a brief traffic jam on the Royal River. I went back through the border section with the Border Challenge in September.

To the OP, I went thru from Mountain to Moose in late June and again in early September. I found the portages rocky and some mud, but nothing that was especially horrible. It was worse going from Moose into North Fowl, but my 2nd time thru, a local clued me in to a different ending to the portage on the N. Fowl end that kicks you directly in the stream and no mud.
 
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