BWCA Mudro (limited) trip planning HELP!!! Boundary Waters Trip Planning Forum
Chat Rooms (0 Chatting)  |  Search  |   Login/Join
* BWCA is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Trip Planning Forum
      Mudro (limited) trip planning HELP!!!     
 Forum Sponsor



senior member (55)senior membersenior member
08/19/2022 10:39AM  
Hey everyone!

This is REALLY last minute but with all my busy schedule I've failed to plan my trip!

For the past 10 years I've always came in nina/moose and straight up to Iron Lake in one day. I just really enjoyed that route and I knew where to find fish, it never disappointed me.

This year is different as I'm bringing my fiancée (her first trip my 12th or so).
I've never been through Mudro and would like to push hard about 6-8 hours and base camp for 5 days.

Any and ALL campsites and destinations welcome!
Good fishing lake a plus (SMB Walleye & Northern)
Current and Waterfalls also a plus of course.

Please help me plan our trip as we head out in 2 weeks!

Thanks in advance!
Reply    Reply with Quote    Print Top Bottom Previous Next
distinguished member(902)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/19/2022 11:51AM  
Are you going yet this fall?
6-8 hours could easily get you to Lower Basswood Falls area out of Mudro. This is a great first trip destination for your finance. Basswood Falls are gorgeous, Close by you have Wheelbarrow Falls, pictos, and you can make a day trip to Table Rock.

You will be able to find fish below the falls.

I would suggest an early start if you go this route. The winds on Horse Lake can pick up and be brutal, especially for a first timer. The only difficult portage is from Mudro to Sandpit, after that, they are all fairly flat and easy. Depending on water levels, there may be some additional pull-overs on the Horse River.

This is also a very popular spot, so expect to see people and full campsites. An early start helps here as well.
08/19/2022 12:07PM  
A popular loop involves paddling down the Horse River to Lower Basswood Falls on the first day. Takes 6-7 hours from Mudro if double portaging. Many people like the area, stay multiple days/base camp there, and head back using the same route (up the Horse River). Current is not bad going up river. A couple nice campsites below LBF. The other option is to keep going up to Crooked and then head south out of Friday Bay via Boot/Fourtown to depart.
John Moore
Guest Paddler
08/19/2022 12:32PM  
I also recommend Lower Basswood Falls area and campsite 1547 if available.

distinguished member(4155)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
08/19/2022 05:05PM  
Since you said current and waterfalls....that pretty much takes out the Fourtown and beyond options. So yeah either head for LBF area as mentioned or I'll throw another option out.....Upper Basswood Falls. Wheelbarrow and Lower are more of a single "falls" type setting. Upper Falls is a long set of rapids and cascades with a long, well traveled and flat portage around it. There are even campsites along the falls/rapids via the water or trails off the main portage. Fastest way there (unless there's a strong NE wind which is rare) is via Sandpit to Jackfish Bay of Basswood. Paddle up the length of the bay and you're basically at the top of the falls. Can setup camp on the lake and day trip to the falls area. Or try and actually get one of the sites along the falls. Lots of pools and backwaters and bays and and among the rapids to fish. And far less busy than LBF as far as campers and fishing from what I've seen (but the same river and same fish)
08/20/2022 07:27AM  
Mudro to LBF would be my choice as well.

The portages into Fourtown can be brutal for a newbie.

Once past the falls there is no portaging for as long as you want.

I really enjoyed site 1859 on Wednesday Bay.
Perfect site for just two people. Can't beat the view and the fishing around the area is great. You can go a long ways to the west through Crooked and turn around and come back the same way or get adventurous and heads south out of Friday Bay back to Mudro. You can avoid the portages at Fourtown by heading over to Horse Lake out of Fourtown if you want or maybe by then she would have her trail legs.
They are pretty cool but tough. I took a spill this year when I stepped out at the landing and managed to find a hole. Sunk to my hip and almost flipped the canoe. Was kind of embarrassing!
distinguished member (137)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/21/2022 01:44PM  
Hands down Crooked/LBF :-) Not even a question, in my mind. :D Unless you are going over Labor Day, in which case...I hear Tin Can Mike is nice this time of year ;-)
senior member (87)senior membersenior member
08/22/2022 06:55PM  
100% Lower Basswood Falls. Especially if waterfalls are a big draw. You could daytrip up to wheelbarrow and Upper Basswood Falls. There's good fishing throughout that entire area as well. Can be a little busy right near LBF though.
distinguished member(1213)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/24/2022 09:42AM  
Done this trip the last two years. It is grand. Don't forget the pictographs after LBF. Fishing is great up there. Best anywhere I've gone.
senior member (84)senior membersenior member
08/24/2022 02:28PM  
My son and I just did a similar trip this past June. Started at Mudro and traveled thru the Horse River to Lower Basswood Falls the first day. It was about 6 hours of traveling and we honestly didn't kill ourselves. We scored the site adjacent to the falls on the American side the first night. From there we headed North along the border checking out the pictos, Table Rock, and ended up staying at the top of Wednesday Bay for a few nights. From there we paddled Crooked to Friday Bay - if you do this make sure to stop and check out the old car - and headed south towards Fourtown before finally exiting at Mudro. We stayed in the Thunder Lake/Beartrap Lake for 3 nights and it was super quiet and peaceful!

The scenery was beautiful, the portages weren't too terrible (well there were a couple that got your heart rates going), and the fishing was very good. I am normally a paddler who looks more towards enjoying the fishing on my trips and this trip we did less fishing and more traveling which turned out surprisingly great and was a pleasant surprise.

You could easily just stay around the "falls area" on Basswood/Crooked then turn around and exit out thru Horse/Mudro and have a great time.
senior member (55)senior membersenior member
08/27/2022 12:22PM  
As always, you guys are amazing!
Thank you for all the help. I'm really looking forward to our trip here in a few days!
08/29/2022 09:41AM  
Just got back from a Mudro loop. We went into LBF from Mudro in one day. Horse river was pretty low. We had a way more challenging time working through the initial section than I expected. I was warned by a solo who was coming out on trip that it was low and was going to be a lot of work. I had two new guys on trip which probably didn’t help in what was a challenging confusing puzzle around every corner of rock gardens.

It was passable and we got through it. We ended up doing the loop since my two new to canoe tripping buddies didn’t want to go back up the Horse River again!

We came out yesterday from Fourtown after a heavy rain. Those portages are definitely challenging without having slippery wet rock.

distinguished member(3422)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/31/2022 06:35PM  
You sure you want to push your fiance for 8 hours?
08/31/2022 11:32PM  
Just looked at my Garmin tracking time from when we started including lunch to get to the campsite. We ended up having to portage past Lower Basswood Falls and it took us about 8 hours and 10 minutes.


Reply    Reply with Quote    Print Top Bottom Previous Next