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member (12)member
08/29/2023 11:20AM  
Taking my wife in via EP30 during the 2nd half of June next year. I wanted to do May, but she doesn't want to be cold. This will be her first trip in over 20 years and my 4th in 5 years. I've only ever gone in August so I've been spoiled by good weather and no bugs. The current plan is to paddle to Lake 4 on day 1 and then base camp for 3 nights. What are we in for in terms of bugs and traffic?
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08/29/2023 07:28PM  
It will be busy. Normally you can plan on paddling at least to Lake three unless you get lucky. Bugs? You're almost a year away, not the time to ask about bugs. Way too many variables. The one thing you can be sure of is yes you're in the BWCA and yes there will be bugs.
distinguished member (385)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/29/2023 09:00PM  
Bugs in later June? Plan for the worst lol
distinguished member (412)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
08/29/2023 09:34PM  
Bugs will be much worse in June & lake 4 will be like you’re on a halloween route. Expect alot of traffic
08/30/2023 04:55AM  
The bug situation will depend on where you are from. We've heard reports that the mosquitoes were terrible where we were going and then found very few when we got there compared to home. By late June the black flies will not be much of a problem and stable flies get much worse in July. If you are from a city that does mosquito control by spraying, you may think the mosquitoes are terrible.

Lake One is the gateway for lakes 2, 3, 4, etc and it has a lot of traffic....except that it doesn't if you choose a campsite away from the main route. Same goes for the rest of the lakes. If you choose to camp right on the main route to Insula, you will see canoes regularly. If you get off the main route you see few. Getting off the main route on Lake 4 is difficult but you could paddle up to Bridge lake and get off the main route.
member (12)member
08/30/2023 10:22AM  
Thanks everyone for the heads up. I asked her if she wanted bugs and traffic or potential cold and no swimming. She said bugs and traffic so look forward to my trip report next year when she will learn what bugs actually mean.
distinguished member (181)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/01/2023 11:11PM  
Check out the campsites in Southeastern Lake 3. A couple very nice ones. Only traffic seems to be people looking to camp in that part of the lake. Been there 3 times in the last 2 years and have gotten one of my 2 favorites each time. It was not uncommon to have one of them unoccupied for a couple days or more.

I believe a large percentage of people that enter at Lake One are heading to Insula and/or beyond. And I suspect the mosquitoes will abundant. They were in mid-July.

I thought there would be noticeably fewer this year since the high water last year created(temporarily), many more breeding places. I hoped that fewer wet spots this year would mean less mosquitoes. An hour after sunset, it is considerably better. Also, look into a Thermacell if you haven’t already.

Good luck,
distinguished member(1440)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/02/2023 04:37PM  
We went last week of May the first year we went, 16 years ago. The numbered lakes were so busy that we paddled for several hours just to find a camp site.

As others have said, bugs will probably be epic in June.

We go the second week of September. Temps are typically mild and there are few if any bugs. We also go to the Gunflint area which has far fewer people
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