Boundary Waters, Trip Reports, BWCA, Stories

Revisiting & Testing My Limits
by Dbldppr1250

Trip Type: Paddling Canoe
Entry Date: 07/31/2016
Entry & Exit Point: Moose Lake (EP 25)
Number of Days: 9
Group Size: 1
Trip Introduction:
This year my paddling buddy George had some scheduling issues and I could not find another partner to trip with, so I decided to be solo and revisit an area where I used to take students from my school in St Louis, Missouri for ~9 years. I've also had some health issues that made the experience a challenge and gave me an opportunity to test my limits. Fibromyalgia, some bulging discs above and below my L 4-5 fusion, and bad knees have been holding me back. Fishing as always was my first priority and my camping sites were prioritized to the northwest corner of Ensign and Splash Lakes. George also wanted me to bring him back some "Let It Ride" and "Let It Roll", brewed up north in Grand Marais, where he used to live. I also had a chance to visit George and Leslie on the way to and on the way back. My drive is over 1400 miles, so I'll first drive from my home in Winston-Salem, NC to their home in Erwin, TN, and then on to Ely, MN. I made arrangements to rent a canoe, buy a fishing license, reserve a bunkhouse for the night before I start my canoeing, and get an entry permit all from Latourell's Outfitters. Now I was ready to test my limits - things aren't getting any easier at age 66!
Day 1 of 9
Sunday, July 31, 2016 This day I took off at 4 pm for a short 3-hour drive to my friends, George and Leslie Gradek. I got there in the evening, and we had a great chance to catch up on our recent experiences. George and I then sat out on his deck and watched 6 deer cropping in the grassy meadow that is adjacent to his lot. The deer didn't seem to mind us talking and watching them with a high-beamed light for a few hours. We had a great time just sitting there and talking, and then we headed in for a bit of sleep.