Boundary Waters, Trip Reports, BWCA, Stories

One New Fisherman
by Spartan1

Trip Type: Paddling Canoe
Entry Date: 08/29/2011
Entry & Exit Point: Mudro Lake (restricted--no camping on Horse Lake) (EP 22)
Number of Days: 5
Group Size: 2
Trip Introduction:
This is a report of my first fishing trip, ever. As a forty-year veteran of trips to the BWCA/Q, I had never fished on any of my canoe trips. But I had the opportunity to go on a trip with Ramsey Dowgiallo of "Wilderness Journey Guide and Outfitters" this summer when I won a free trip online. It was a great time. Thanks, Ramsey!
Part 1 of 8
One New Fisherman


This trip started years ago when I stopped at the Wilderness Journey Guide and Outfitters booth at the Quiet Waters Symposium in East Lansing, Michigan. After talking to the guy there, I signed up for their online newsletter. Since then I have read each edition with interest. This spring I received an email stating that I was the winner of a fully outfitted and guided canoe trip.

I had never fished, so while talking to Ramsey, the guide who would be taking me, it was decided that he would teach me to fish and our trip would emphasize fishing.

In May I attended a meeting with all the parties being guided by Wilderness Journey. Most attending were “newbies”. Information sheets were handed out with rules, lists for personal clothing, what to include in each personal pack, and suggested fishing equipment. One thing was made clear: the guide does not DO DISHES!

The scheduling of the trip was complicated. When was the guide available, when was our granddaughter (whom we had taken for a cabin week the past four years) available, and when could we be gone for three weeks so that Spartan2 and I could have a 6-day trip? After many communications with everyone involved, my trip was scheduled to begin on August 29th.

Next I needed someone to assist me in gathering the fishing equipment. I contacted Jason Olmsted (oldgentleman on and he agreed to help me. We set a date and I traveled to Lansing and took him to lunch. We then went to Gander Mountain, where he works part-time in the fishing department, and worked off the list. Total was under $200.

On August 17th we traveled to the Chicago area and picked up our granddaughter and we were on our way. Our travels included a visit with friends in The Cities, then on to Rockwood Lodge on the Gunflint for a week in the cabin.

After our daughter picked up her daughter, we traveled to Ely, where Spartan2 would stay in a cabin while I was on my “fishing” trip. We met with Ramsey on Sunday afternoon and made final plans. He would pick me up at the cabin at 5:00 AM.