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Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Group Forum: Solo Tripping
      Made it back!     



member (50)member
09/17/2016 09:20PM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
I am back from the Solo, and, even though my original destinations were not met, I had a very good time. One thing I realized this time is that I am 62 years old! Instead of making it to Brent and around to Elk, Ted, I only made it as far as northern McIntyre. It boils down to my body not wanting to paddle and portage as much as my mind may have imagined it wanted to. By the end, my joints were creaking and groaning, and my general energy level was going down even with good food and sleep. Granite Cliffs and I intersected at Isabella Lake. I just couldn't believe it when he said "veggykurt". I had the good campsite on that lake. He said he had always found it occupied when traveling by. But it was so very interesting to meet up that way. Anyway, my trip went North Bay, Isabella, on up to Sarah and then McIntyre. I traveled only a 3 to 5 hours each day, and stayed 2 days at to campsites-that one on Isabella and one on Alice--the one in that "channel that has a real nice fire pit and a secluded feel to it. Protected from the wind, too. At that campsite I had a moose sloshing through the water-maybe even taking a bath--not 10 feet from my tent at 3am. Actually, I don't KNOW that it was a moose, because I never left my tent--I just listened to a lot of grunting and swishing of water. For all I know it could have been Yeti. Anyway, I spent plenty of restful time in very nice campsites-Including the "5" in the northern part of McIntyre on an island where there is one on the other end. I got some of the best sleep I have had in years. All equipment worked well, including that clamp on portage yoke I was complaining about before I left. After I got the hang of it it worked just fine--no need for dangling counterweights after all! The NRS workboot workshoe was the star of my equipment, though. Inexpensive, lots of ankle support, cannot come off your feet in knee deep muck--I couldn't have been more pleased with a portage boot. My first day on Baylee Bay I got very nasty westerly winds in the face and it took a lot out of me. My Pack Canoe was stable in all conditions, however. I have a new appreciation for that canoe now--lightweight and tough. I could go around downfalls on portages with it because it is so short. I'll let you in on a dumb mistake I made and that was following the Fisher map and trying to take the lower portage from the unnamed lake into Isabella. That just lead to a muck pit from Hell and in search for that portage I tested the NRS boots for real! In fact, I should have referred to that Chrismar Map that I had to double check it and see that, even if there was a portage there, it sure isn't there any more. I admitted defeat and got to the real portage entrance a short distance away. When solo canoeing, you pay for your own mistakes! Well, time to go for now, but it really was a meaningful and enjoyable trip--very good in many ways, and I thank you guys for giving me feedback on it. BTW--I was of a mind, laying in that tent next to some huge animal sloshing near my tent(presumably moose) that I would rather come up against a black bear than a pissed off or surprised moose. I am sure some of you have had experiences to share on that account! Nite all.
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09/18/2016 10:31AM  
Thanks for the update, veggykurt. Glad it went well. I know the feeling of getting "older". I did pretty well this year. I found that lightening the load and some physical "preparation" helped a lot, but some days I was still pretty sore and tired.
distinguished member(7210)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/18/2016 01:57PM  
I was alone on an island once when I heard something swimming to my home. Then I heard clop-clop-clop and dripping. It was a moose. I had an air horn, which I blew, and the moose went back to swimming.
member (50)member
09/18/2016 02:01PM  
MissMolly--Airhorn--excellent! If it was a moose I was afraid of getting stepped on if it came onto shore. I had images of a moose with a tarp and tent wrapped around it's legs--me in the tent. I will remember the airhorn for next time.
distinguished member(1919)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/19/2016 12:31PM  
Nice job and nice to see you on Isabella.
Don't feel badly about taking the Muck Portage from unnamed to Isabella. I have been through the area there likely dozens of times. This trip I was with my brother and his son in law. We were in a hurry trying to get to the island campsite on MacIntyre on our first day. Hurrying, it turns out, does not always work out well.
I remember selecting my maps for the trip and having two Fisher maps of the route to MacIntyre. You guessed it. We also took the Muck Portage and after we started across the portage I realized my error. But we headed on and all three of us ended up stuck in the mud. Actually, it was quite humorous.
When I got home I pulled out the other map and sure enough the map had a large X across that portage. Still perplexed as to why I forgot that muck, guess too old and in to much of a hurry.
Now both maps have the X!
member (50)member
09/19/2016 04:02PM  
How interesting that you did a similar thing! I felt pretty dumb about it. Had you all witnessed it from a Godlike position you might have laughed as I marched into that 10 acres or so of muck and bog with a 65lb pack on my back. I was rooting around back there looking for a trail like the Conquistador looking for El Dorado!
I have all my trip pics and videos up on Facebook, but I haven't yet figured out how to get them from there onto here. I guess I better download them from Facebook first. Yes, I find it remarkable that you came across me out there! And, yes we probably were on the same island camp on McIntyre--I have pics of that too--the great rocky outcropping. More later.
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