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Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Group Forum: Solo Tripping
      Does The Early Bird Get The Worm?     

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04/12/2015 05:00AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
What time of day do you like to paddle the most and when traveling how long of day will you paddle?

Myself I like to get up when it's still dark and get everything packed up and start paddling when I can just start to see the water and have a breakfest snack along the way, portages are way less crowded and you can go by campsites and hear the snoring, I will travel till anywhere between 2:00 to 5:00 pm depending how tired I get or what the weathers doing.

It does make for some early nights, but I will be up around 3:00 to 4:00am most days unless I'm working.
 
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04/12/2015 06:59AM  
I usually don't get on the water until around 9, give or take a little, and I usually like to travel around 5-6 hours. I go in late Sept and days are short though.
 
barracuda
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04/12/2015 07:34AM  
I too love being out on the water at first light.





Got to love the glassy water, cool temps, fog on the water, the quiet of the morning, paddling past all the sleepy people.





The best part is making camp around 2:00-5:00 knowing you had a full day of travel and can enjoy some relaxing in camp. You also have the light to paddle a few more hours if all the good campsites are full.

 
MacCamper
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04/12/2015 07:58AM  
Naturally an early bird, with wake-up hours starting at about 4:30 am, I am up at the crack of dawn or earlier. Breakfast, break camp and then onto more adventuring is pretty typical for me. I like the morning light for photographs and there tends to be more wildlife, not to mention mirror like water to travel through. Bugs are not so bad either in the wee hours of the day.
 
04/12/2015 09:02AM  
Morning is the best time to enjoy why your out there. Morning coffee is the best. I eat a good breakfast usually and then clean up, pack up and go. 8am is a good time to go. If miles have to be met or you need to make a break to not be wind bound I'll snack on my lunch and eat a breakfast later if so inclined. Sleeping in does happen on occasion but very rare and never when moving is important. Sometimes the rush of getting packed up in the morning is kind of fun in itself. Just don't rush the coffee time. One thing I find is the morning can get away if you are not careful. Early rise and organization is important. Pack as much as you can the night before and sort of pack as you go in the morning. When with others it's nice to help each other when you can.
 
Minnesotian
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04/12/2015 10:21AM  

I love the early morning. I try to be on the water and moving by 6:30 if not earlier. The water is usually glass, the mist coming out of the woods is everywhere, and it feels great waking up on the lake.
 
04/12/2015 10:51AM  

quote nctry: "Morning is the best time to enjoy why your out there. Morning coffee is the best. I eat a good breakfast usually and then clean up, pack up and go. 8am is a good time to go. If miles have to be met or you need to make a break to not be wind bound I'll snack on my lunch and eat a breakfast later if so inclined. Sleeping in does happen on occasion but very rare and never when moving is important.

Sometimes the rush of getting packed up in the morning is kind of fun in itself. Just don't rush the coffee time. One thing I find is the morning can get away if you are not careful. Early rise and organization is important. Pack as much as you can the night before and sort of pack as you go in the morning. When with others it's nice to help each other when you can."


+1

I completely agree with nctry almost word for word.

I enjoy my morning time and coffee time too, but when conditions dictate I can be on the water before the mist has burnt off the lake. Much like boonie though, 9:00 A:M is more the norm.

Due to the fact I prefer the northern EP's of Quetico, there's less people, and therefore less competition for campsites and the portages are rarely "shared". Nevertheless, wind and large waves are still a concern on the bigger lakes, so getting on the water early is still preferable.

When on solo trips, I tend to travel longer miles and hours, six to eight hours per day is not uncommon.

Hans Solo

 
OBX2Kayak
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04/12/2015 01:20PM  
I get on the water when I get on the water. Some times its early, other times its later. I like not having a schedule when I'm in the BW.
 
04/12/2015 04:30PM  
I vary quite a bit. On the first few days of a trip, I like to get up and on the water by 7 or so. That's making time for coffee, which I really enjoy in the morning. I like paddling past other camps that haven't stirred or are just making fires. Once I've turned the corner and am more heading out rather than in, I tend to pack and move more slowly, especially if I have a really good site. Either way there is no sleeping in because my dog always likes to make sure I know the sun is about to come up.
 
pswith5
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04/12/2015 04:32PM  
It depends on time of year to some degree as to the time. Early May is different than the 20th of June. I don't need to paddle in the dark.
 
hobbydog
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04/12/2015 08:54PM  
I duck hunt a lot and you have to be on the water before it even thinks about getting light. There is something special about watching the day come alive. Ut can take some effort but the rewards are high.
 
04/12/2015 09:33PM  
I've never gotten out of the sack when it was completely dark but usually just at first light. I love the very early morning breakfast and sitting by the lake. It takes me a bit to wrap everything up so I shoot for 8-9:00 on the water.





 
04/12/2015 10:30PM  

It's the early bird that gets the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.
 
04/12/2015 10:45PM  

quote TomT: "I've never gotten out of the sack when it was completely dark but usually just at first light. I love the very early morning breakfast and sitting by the lake. It takes me a bit to wrap everything up so I shoot for 8-9:00 on the water.




"


Awesome photo Tom! Where was that taken?

Hans Solo
 
04/13/2015 03:52AM  
I like the idea of getting on the water early but the reality is that I enjoy sleeping in more. If I was more of a photographer I might change my priorities.

The only day I get on the water early is the put-in day. Every day after that it seems like I don't get on the water until 10:30am or so. I paddle until 6-7pm. Not generally a problem as I trip early and late in the season so there is less competition for a camping spot. There is plenty of light left to set up my hammock and get water boiling for dinner.
 
04/13/2015 09:33AM  





Some tripping partners love to get out there early too...
 
Alan Gage
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04/13/2015 09:57AM  
I almost always trip in the fall so even if I do get up with the sun I'm usually not in a hurry to get on the water until it's warmed up a bit. Also gives the tarp and any other dew covered gear a chance to dry off.

My early mornings are leisurely spent cooking and eating breakfast. On the water around 9:00 and usually travel until late afternoon/early evening, many times not finishing dinner until the sun has gone down. I'll usually have an extended break somewhere in the middle of the day where I'll do some exploring on foot, reading, or napping.

After a few days I get tired of sitting around the fire by myself for hours on end, which is why I tend to travel later into the day and eat late. After dinner I might walk down to the lake shore for a little fishing or sometimes I'll go out for a night paddle before bed, which can be a really special thing.

Alan
 
04/13/2015 12:19PM  
At home I will want to get out early to avoid the crowds and enjoy what nature has to offer in the calm of the morning. Tripping the first day is usually early and after that it depends on the weather, my mood and if I had plans for the day. If I do plan on getting an early start I pretty much prepack everything so I can load and push off only making a pot of coffee and perhaps boiling a fresh egg in the process.
 
04/13/2015 01:07PM  
quote OBX2Kayak: "I get on the water when I get on the water. Some times its early, other times its later. I like not having a schedule when I'm in the BW." I don't have a schedule, I just enjoy the early morning hours the most, and to make sure I get back to my suburban on the last day of my trip.
 
04/13/2015 01:15PM  
quote nctry: "





Some tripping partners love to get out there early too... "
I still love that photo Ben, I might have to frame it and put it on my wall of BW pictures.
 
04/13/2015 06:08PM  
quote nctry: "Morning is the best time to enjoy why your out there. Morning coffee is the best. I eat a good breakfast usually and then clean up, pack up and go. 8am is a good time to go. If miles have to be met or you need to make a break to not be wind bound I'll snack on my lunch and eat a breakfast later if so inclined. Sleeping in does happen on occasion but very rare and never when moving is important. Sometimes the rush of getting packed up in the morning is kind of fun in itself. Just don't rush the coffee time. One thing I find is the morning can get away if you are not careful. Early rise and organization is important. Pack as much as you can the night before and sort of pack as you go in the morning. When with others it's nice to help each other when you can."

We're on the same page on this one! I go early when I have to cover miles but it's a rare trip that I miss the coffee in the morning before I move. Somewhere between 8-9AM is probably about usual for my departure time although I've also left at 6AM (just not too often!).
 
04/14/2015 06:58AM  
quote HansSolo: "
quote TomT: "I've never gotten out of the sack when it was completely dark but usually just at first light. I love the very early morning breakfast and sitting by the lake. It takes me a bit to wrap everything up so I shoot for 8-9:00 on the water.

"


Awesome photo Tom! Where was that taken?

Hans Solo"


It's the campsite at Bald Rock Falls on the Falls Chain in the Q Sept. 2013. You just walk a path and your right next to it. I thought I lost my dog on this morning but she wandered over here and couldn't hear me calling her.
 
ParkerMag
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04/14/2015 07:56AM  
I'll get up at first light, but then start coffee, fish from shore while it's heating, then take a cup out with me to fish for 30-40 minutes. After that we'll pack up and move...generally rolling by 8:30.
 
04/14/2015 11:02AM  

quote TomT: "quote HansSolo: "
quote TomT: "I've never gotten out of the sack when it was completely dark but usually just at first light. I love the very early morning breakfast and sitting by the lake. It takes me a bit to wrap everything up so I shoot for 8-9:00 on the water.

"


Awesome photo Tom! Where was that taken?

Hans Solo"


It's the campsite at Bald Rock Falls on the Falls Chain in the Q Sept. 2013. You just walk a path and your right next to it. I thought I lost my dog on this morning but she wandered over here and couldn't hear me calling her. "


Wow, I've been through the Falls Chain several times and I've actually camped there as well, but I can't remember Bald Rock Falls looking so ferocious. Beautiful picture!

Hans Solo
 
04/14/2015 08:04PM  
For September it was really great. I was up early that morning and took pics while the sun came up. Here's a couple more.

 
04/14/2015 09:15PM  
Yea, that's a keeper. My memory has faded...but is that Bernice?

quote nctry: "





Some tripping partners love to get out there early too... "
 
gkimball
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04/16/2015 07:27PM  
I like to get up early, but it is hard if I stay up late to star gaze or just listen to the night, which I also like to do. A magical time of day to be up and about, whether you are moving or just up and awake. It is different from any other time of day.

Foggy Beth Lake Morning
 
04/16/2015 10:11PM  
quote Exo: "Yea, that's a keeper. My memory has faded...but is that Bernice?


quote nctry: "





Some tripping partners love to get out there early too... "
"




Yes, that's Bernice on our forty day trip on Elton Lake.
 
FOG51
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04/17/2015 02:44AM  
I work nights so I've seen many thousands of sunrises and when I'm on vacation we rarely hit the water till 8am and them only if I'm moving or headed out. Not to highjack your post Mark but I want to thank Ben for his photo, truly beautiful and says why a lot of us go tripping. FRED
 
hobbydog
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04/17/2015 11:18AM  
quote nctry: "





Some tripping partners love to get out there early too... "


No doubt. Mine sat and watched the sunrise on a cold morning a few years ago while I worked on getting a fire going. I can't ever remember a morning where I forced myself out of bed early that I later wished I had stayed in bed.

 
04/17/2015 12:29PM  
I might have to get a tripping dog one of these days, Dena won't let me take the Yorkie.
 
04/17/2015 08:56PM  
I'm surprised Suncatcher hasn't piped in here. He's the king of early morning sunrises. :)
 
hobbydog
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04/17/2015 10:18PM  
Not sure about early birds getting the worm but this early fox got some fresh turtle eggs. She came back every few minutes and grabbed about 20 eggs that morning. Had I not crawled out early that morning I would have missed a very memorable morning.



 
04/18/2015 08:21PM  
You have to love first light.
 
04/19/2015 06:48PM  
A fox encounter, nice shots Hobbydog.

The coolest early morning wildlife encounter for me was way back in 1984 on my first solo.

I don't remember the lake but dawn was just barely coming on as I lay in the tent. All of a sudden I feel the ground vibrating and loud thumping steps coming closer. Something very large just walked past my tent and was wading into the lake.

I hurriedly unzipped the door and fly to see a cow moose swimming away from my site. I got out and went to the shore in my bare feet and watched it climb up on the far bank of the bay I was on. I remember it looked back at me before ambling up into the forest. It's something I'll never forget and it's moments like those on solos that keep me craving to get back.

 
yellowcanoe
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04/19/2015 09:55PM  
I usually get on the water by six or seven. Solo, wind avoidance is important. I have outrun several high winds which tend to kick up about 11.

In twenty years soloing this strategy has failed only twice on days it turned out windy.

Often I am in camp at noon free to relax and do whatever.

The earliest I got up was at three am and yes paddled in the dark for an hour. I had a premonition..

plus those am wildlife sightings are something you dont get during the day.

Moose are up early...btw.
 
paddlinjoe
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05/14/2015 03:01PM  
I don't take a watch on my trips, but do carry a spot. Judging from the launch times there, I am typically hitting the water between 6:30 and 7:30 on tripping days. Morning is definitely a favorite time to paddle. That said, I have read several posts about paddling by moonlight which have inspired me to put that on a list of things to try.
 
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