BWCA EP 14 & EP 16 All permits taken Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
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02/02/2022 11:44AM  
I've been taking BW trips since the late 80's and have never had an issue getting a permit for my trips in the western portion of the BW. This year I understood that there was going to be a reduction in the number of permits issued in this area so I decided to reserve "earlier" than normal. I've taken multiple trips as a guide/leader for our church and often don't make reservations until sometime in the Spring. To my surprise (reserving on Feb 1st) I found no permits available for EP 14 and 16 and only a very few for Moose River South. This was not only for the intended date but for the ENTIRE summer (I mean every day). I find that hard to believe. I ended up getting the reservations needed for Crab/Cummings for the desired date. I'm fine with that selection as it is also a very good area with lots of opportunities for good fishing, exploring and some very nice campsites. So, ultimately no complaints I'm just very surprised for the permits listed above are TOTALLY taken. What's up?
 
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cyclones30
distinguished member(3904)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 01:11PM  
14 and 16 are very popular, even without reductions. Plus the covid push has brought more people. Those 2 or 3 things means the popular ones are gone quick. Mudro, Little Gabbro, Clearwater, etc etc. And all this has people reserving them sooner (like you) and here we are.

But people also cancel. So them being full today doesn't mean they'll be full next week or next month or so on. People on here cancel and sometimes post that they canceled as a heads up.

02/02/2022 01:44PM  
cyclones30: "14 and 16 are very popular, even without reductions. Plus the covid push has brought more people. Those 2 or 3 things means the popular ones are gone quick. Mudro, Little Gabbro, Clearwater, etc etc. And all this has people reserving them sooner (like you) and here we are.

But people also cancel. So them being full today doesn't mean they'll be full next week or next month or so on. People on here cancel and sometimes post that they canceled as a heads up. "

Good point. Thanks. I'll keep my eye open just in case something comes available in EP14. Made a few trips to Lynx that included bushwhacks to Rangeline and Warpaint. Some of the young bucks would like to try that as well.
papalambeau
distinguished member (203)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 02:51PM  
RJB: "cyclones30: "14 and 16 are very popular, even without reductions. Plus the covid push has brought more people. Those 2 or 3 things means the popular ones are gone quick. Mudro, Little Gabbro, Clearwater, etc etc. And all this has people reserving them sooner (like you) and here we are.



But people also cancel. So them being full today doesn't mean they'll be full next week or next month or so on. People on here cancel and sometimes post that they canceled as a heads up.


Good point. Thanks. I'll keep my eye open just in case something comes available in EP14. Made a few trips to Lynx that included bushwhacks to Rangeline and Warpaint. Some of the young bucks would like to try that as well.
"
"


Love your quote on your profile RJB. We've hit Lynx on many trips and it's one of our favorite basecamp lakes. If you stay on Lynx you need to make a quick daytrip over to Heritage too. Nice walleye and smallmouth and a nice wild feel to the whole lake.

Blessings
02/02/2022 03:12PM  
Last year I got a permit for an ep but not the one I desired. I kept checking and eventually the one I wanted opened up so I took that one and canceled the 1st one.
02/02/2022 03:45PM  
I agree papalambeau. The youth stayed on Lynx in 2020 while I hiked the Sioux Hustler trail with one of the boys who preferred hiking. The group on Lynx did go to Heritage and then took the portage over to Loon Lake. While hiking the SHT we stopped and ate lunch overlooking Heritage. Most of our trips have been in late July and I've fished Heritage a couple times but with limited success. I'll be 70 later this year and have been to the BW area since 1953. I count it a great blessing to have been there all these years and now can share it with children and grandchildren. They love it like I do and were willing to come all the way from GA.
KarlBAndersen1
distinguished member(1291)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 05:13PM  
I'm beginning to think there are other factors at play - like people not only grabbing numerous permits - but MANY permits.
Something is fishy.
Speckled
distinguished member(559)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 07:21PM  
KarlBAndersen1: "I'm beginning to think there are other factors at play - like people not only grabbing numerous permits - but MANY permits.
Something is fishy."


I don't necessarily think what you're saying is happening, as when you go, it's alot more crowded recently, where as if it was one person just blanking out the the system to ensure privacy, that's would you'd find privacy. I found a circus last year.

However, one solution would be to raise the price significantly and make them non-refundable/cancelable.

LynnOK
member (7)member
 
02/02/2022 07:29PM  
They could have made changes on the permits instead of reducing them.

#14 Little Indian Sioux - make 2/3 of them "No camping on Pauness or Shell Lakes"

#16 Moose River - make 2/3 of them no camping on Nina Moose or Agnes.

But to have them all gone for the whole season, that is weird and suspect.

Deeznuts
member (37)member
 
02/02/2022 07:52PM  
I've been planning a loop trip on EP 14 for 2023 and this has me concerned. I understand it's a popular area but I liked it for it's reclusivness once you pushed through the first few lakes. Hoping a lot of the popularity is for the Basecamp lakes and not for the larger loops. Thinking of pushing into weeny PMA just to get away from the crowds, if I can even reserve a permit next year :/
02/02/2022 08:07PM  
Deeznuts: "I've been planning a loop trip on EP 14 for 2023 and this has me concerned. I understand it's a popular area but I liked it for it's reclusivness once you pushed through the first few lakes. Hoping a lot of the popularity is for the Basecamp lakes and not for the larger loops. Thinking of pushing into weeny PMA just to get away from the crowds, if I can even reserve a permit next year :/"

I just posted on your thread.
jhb8426
distinguished member(1336)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/02/2022 09:03PM  
RJB: "I'll be 70 later this year and have been to the BW area since 1953. "
Wow, you went there at the tender age of 1???
02/03/2022 05:09AM  
jhb8426: "RJB: "I'll be 70 later this year and have been to the BW area since 1953. "
Wow, you went there at the tender age of 1???"


Yes, first time in the area I was 9 months old. Our family began vacationing within a few miles of the western start of the Echo trail. Later we purchased a cabin. I can only remember 2 years not visiting in the summer and coming some years more than once. Started taking my boys into the BW in the late 80’s and they still laugh about how unprepared I was. I’d still like to come when snow is on the ground and hike into Big Moose. Maybe this year?
Jasonf
senior member (77)senior membersenior member
 
02/06/2022 12:39PM  
I ran into the same situation this year and barely got a Ep14 permit. I was working midnights and figured I'd get my permit when I woke up in the afternoon of the day the permit window opened. Well it just so happened that I woke up early, around 10:30 am, and started looking at permits on my phone only to find almost everything was already taken for August for Ep14. Thinking I still wasn't awake or something was wrong with the mobile app I grabbed the laptop and managed to get the lone permit left which just happened to be for a day earlier than I had planned but would work.
Crazy as most years I book my permit as soon as the booking window opens but then when I check back a week later there are still permits available so this year I was more lax.
02/07/2022 05:28PM  
RJB: "I've been taking BW trips since the late 80's and have never had an issue getting a permit for my trips in the western portion of the BW. This year I understood that there was going to be a reduction in the number of permits issued in this area so I decided to reserve "earlier" than normal. I've taken multiple trips as a guide/leader for our church and often don't make reservations until sometime in the Spring. To my surprise (reserving on Feb 1st) I found no permits available for EP 14 and 16 and only a very few for Moose River South. This was not only for the intended date but for the ENTIRE summer (I mean every day). I find that hard to believe. I ended up getting the reservations needed for Crab/Cummings for the desired date. I'm fine with that selection as it is also a very good area with lots of opportunities for good fishing, exploring and some very nice campsites. So, ultimately no complaints I'm just very surprised for the permits listed above are TOTALLY taken. What's up?"
I only think this will encourage groups to enter without permits.
ccslick
 
02/08/2022 08:36AM  
In my years of BWCA and Q trips, I never thought I would need to be waiting on the button to secure a permit. A group of us are going in at EP 14, and when I got around to making a reservation the day they were released, they had been picked over quite a bit. I have a feeling its only going to get worse from here.
Bushman
distinguished member (281)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/08/2022 11:27AM  
I was expecting a barrage of folks last year at # 14.
We hit the water very early and we did the loop up through the Beartracks and Oyster and Shell. We hardly saw anyone at all.
We got all of our fist choice campsites as well.
Very quiet week. We exited the day they closed the entry point for fires. Perhaps that had something to do with it.
We entered July 11th.

Took the hit and reserved #23 this year because there are some areas west of Friday bay I haven't seen. Fourtown will be packed as well as Gun will probably be busy.
Hoping to snag an overnight site somewhere around Gun and make for Saturday Bay the next morning.
ThreeRivers
distinguished member (108)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/08/2022 11:57AM  
I actually took of from work the morning of permit day to ensure I got what I wanted for LIS, and did get it within the first 5 min, but amazed how fast they went. I don't want people to attack me but I only have done solos for the last 10 years, and while I do feel bad a wee bit bad for taking 1 permit for 1 person vs a big 9 person group but that's how the system works. Regardless I hope folks can get in somewhere and have a great time.
Doublelung76
member (15)member
 
02/08/2022 12:29PM  
ThreeRivers: "I actually took of from work the morning of permit day to ensure I got what I wanted for LIS, and did get it within the first 5 min, but amazed how fast they went. I don't want people to attack me but I only have done solos for the last 10 years, and while I do feel bad a wee bit bad for taking 1 permit for 1 person vs a big 9 person group but that's how the system works. Regardless I hope folks can get in somewhere and have a great time. "No need for guilt for buying a permit for a solo,you definitely deserve it as much as a group of 9 people,in my opinion more!
02/08/2022 12:41PM  
ThreeRivers: "I actually took of from work the morning of permit day to ensure I got what I wanted for LIS, and did get it within the first 5 min, but amazed how fast they went. I don't want people to attack me but I only have done solos for the last 10 years, and while I do feel bad a wee bit bad for taking 1 permit for 1 person vs a big 9 person group but that's how the system works. Regardless I hope folks can get in somewhere and have a great time. "

No need to apologize for playing by the rules. I've never taken a solo trip in a canoe. It sounds great but I'm not sure my wife would think it was a good idea at my age. Have a great trip. I didn't get my first choice but I'm happy with what we got ...often there is a reason we don't see at first.
02/08/2022 12:51PM  
Bushman: "I was expecting a barrage of folks last year at # 14.
We hit the water very early and we did the loop up through the Beartracks and Oyster and Shell. We hardly saw anyone at all.
We got all of our fist choice campsites as well.
Very quiet week. We exited the day they closed the entry point for fires. Perhaps that had something to do with it.
We entered July 11th.


Took the hit and reserved #23 this year because there are some areas west of Friday bay I haven't seen. Fourtown will be packed as well as Gun will probably be busy.
Hoping to snag an overnight site somewhere around Gun and make for Saturday Bay the next morning."


We entered EP 16 the week after you. The water was so low that the trip to Oyster took 3 hours longer than usual. But ...we got the great penisula campsite. Set up camp. The next day one of the young ones got a hook in his ankle. I got to be Dr. Bob. Three hours later we got the visit from the rangers ...time to get out. Not good news for a group coming from GA.
EddyTurn
distinguished member (211)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
02/10/2022 04:05PM  
???? you probably hit some bug in the reservation system. I see some availability for both entry points, at least in July.
02/10/2022 05:05PM  
EddyTurn: "???? you probably hit some bug in the reservation system. I see some availability for both entry points, at least in July."

I just checked after seeing your post. Nothing but 0's for EP14 &16 for the entire summer.
02/10/2022 10:11PM  
RJB: "EddyTurn: "???? you probably hit some bug in the reservation system. I see some availability for both entry points, at least in July."


I just checked after seeing your post. Nothing but 0's for EP14 &16 for the entire summer."


Looks booked except for the first week in May or after Sept 18 for LISN. Those sure went fast. I was on first thing and got my third choice date for LISN and that was in the first 10 minutes. Last summer my two teenage daughters and I had to go clear to Slim to find a campground on our first day in mid-June. The data shows more people are going into the BWCA...my guess is more people are staying longer too. After Slim we only saw a canoe or two each day, usually in the distance.
 
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