BWCA Fire grates needed? Boundary Waters Gear Forum
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      Fire grates needed?     



member (7)member
04/30/2022 07:02AM  
Hello all!

Headed up for the first time in about six weeks. Do most campsites have fire grates? Or do we need to pack one. I have seen videos and pictures and most seem to have a fire pit with grate. Thanks in advance.

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04/30/2022 07:28AM  
All campsites in the BWCA have a fire grate installed by the Forest Service (and a pit latrine with a seat). You don't need to bring your own fire grate (and you must use the latrine instead of digging your own toilet).

If you arrive at what you think is a campsite, but there is no fire grate, then the location is not a campsite. You are only allowed to camp at locations with a Forest Service fire grate.

Enjoy your trip, what is your entry point and planned route?
04/30/2022 07:30AM  
Welcome. All authorized sites will have a fire grate and throne.
member (7)member
04/30/2022 07:39AM  
Moose lake entry. Looking at either Heading towards Ima, Thomas, Kekekabic or South Knife. Main purpose of our trip is fishing. I know the trip up to South Knife has some mean portages.
distinguished member (270)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
04/30/2022 10:54AM  

The portages to Knife by the way of Birch Lake aren’t bad. The longest is 84 rods. You can get to Kekekabic from the south arm of Knife. If my goal was either lake I would go this way.
Traveling to Ima by the way of Ensign is a nice trip and Ima is a beautiful lake. From Ima to Kekekabic you would have several portages and the last one into Kekekabic is very steep.

04/30/2022 11:46AM  
Welcome, and I agree with Red lake Paddler - the 5-6 portages from Moose through Birch to Knife are generally considered fairly easy. If you go to Knife through Vera or come up from Frazier through Kek, then they get a bit harder. Of course, a lot depends on your groups physical situation, and especially how you pack. It’s not uncommon for first timers to bring too much stuff. It also matters how you pack. Avoid loose stuff - put everything in a few bags. A lot of times I’ve seen groups struggling on a portage, it’s not because of the portage itself but because they are so disorganized on each end.
04/30/2022 02:45PM  
Be sure to watch the required Forest Service videos before your trip. This question and others are answered.
distinguished member(4155)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
04/30/2022 03:25PM  
Yes, read and watch the required materials beforehand. If you are unclear on fire grates then there a lot of other things you're likely to need to know as well.

And no, the portages to Knife are not hard at all. More like superhighways compared to most portages
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