Sunday, June 24, 2012
EP 14 to East Loon. Approximately. 9 miles.
We wake up early to get a jumpstart on the day. The VNO bunkhouse was comfortable, and suited our needs well. (Except for the herd of elephants staying upstairs having a jumping contest...) After a hot shower and breakfast, we head over to VNO to meet with John, and load our gear in the van. While speaking with John, we decided to rent a 23' MN 4 instead of two alumacrafts 17' and 18.5'. This decision pays huge dividends through out the trip, and served our group very well. The crew at VNO unload our two alumacrafts, and load up the MN 4. We load our gear, and follow the van to EP 16 (Moose River) where we park our vehicle. Our driver is a polite young man and we have good conversation about hunting on the way to EP 14 (LIS North). After we unload our gear, he offers to portage our canoe down to the water, but we respectfully decline. We take a few photos of the group and begin the portage down to the LIS River.
We load our gear, don our pfd's, and push off. All the planning, packing, checking, re-checking, unpacking, re-packing is done and we are on our way. One of the boys snaps a shot of a very happy dad...
As we progress to the first portage, we all settle out of the day to day world, and into paradise. The boys are excited to get out and take a little hike. 60 rods later and we push off again. Noah and Joel are doing well so far, we paddle north.
We decide to take the 8 rod portage from Upper to Lower Pauness.
We paddle up Lower Pauness to the 160 rod portage around Devil's Cascades. With water levels high, the falls were Awesome!!
By this point we have passed several groups traveling towards the EP, which is a good sign for us.
After lunch at the falls, we decide to move north, to look for a good site on East Loon or Little Loon. A group of the Order of the Arrow was performing portage maintenance as we passed by. We offer a Thank You to the group, as the work they do is very much appreciated.
As we paddle through Loon, we see three fishing boats with motors. Each fisherman was respectful, and to our surprise, kindly motored away as they saw us approach. Chris catches 2 nice northern pike, we will eat well tonight!! We decide to camp at the northern most site on East Loon. I would rate it as a 3 star site. It has two nice tent pads, but the flies were horrible. We have made it much further today than I thought we would. The boys are doing great and enjoying themselves. I can't believe how well Joel is doing, portaging his own pack the whole way. I am very proud of both Joel and Noah. They have both pulled their own weight today, and have been smiling and laughing the whole way. The weather is perfect, fresh fish for dinner, happy kido's, camp set up, dinner made, eaten, cleaned up. Life is good!! We all fall asleep pretty early, we've worked hard today.