First BWCA Trip
by bdeck37

Trip Type: Paddling Canoe
Entry Date: 08/02/2016
Entry Point: Angleworm Lake (EP 20)
Exit Point: Mudro Lake (EP 23)  
Number of Days: 5
Group Size: 2
Day 2 of 5
Wednesday, August 03, 2016 Ron woke up much earlier than I did and got the fire started. I woke up somewhere around 7 after a very sound night of sleep. Ron started to cook breakfast once I got up. We had bacon and eggs and it was pretty good. We packed up camp to head to Home Lake to do some Walleye fishing because Ron had caught some there on a previous trip. Our plan was to eventually get to Gull lake and set up camp there. We covered the short portage to Home Lake. At the end of the first part, since we had to double everything, we ran into a group (the first people we had seen and the only for the next 3 days). After talking to them they said "Go to Beartrap, it is awesome!" They also mentioned walleye which made me go crazy because that was one of the things that excited me most about this trip. We then hit high gear since there was only one campsite and they said it was open. I think we set water speed records for a canoe. I did take a few minutes to make a few casts at the north portage out of Home Lake because it looked great for smallmouth. I caught nothing. Now on this portage we had something that can't be explained happen to us. Ron and I are walking along the portage and about halfway to the lake, off to our left we heard a tree snap. There was no wind that day. This was not a dead tree either the noise had that sound of a sapling about 8-10" in diameter snapping. That crackling and popping of a live tree. The noise came about 100 yards off the portage in some pretty thick cover. We couldn't see what made the noise but it was enough for us to stop and look at each other and go, "What the ????" Unsure of what made the noise we moved a little faster than before. We reached gull lake after a fairly decent double portage. We made a few casts as we paddled across Gull catching nothing. From there we moved into Mudhole lake. The portage was exactly that, a mud hole. We didn't take long to cross Mudhole, portage and get into Thunder Lake. Thunder's southernmost campsite had us thinking twice about going to Beartrap. It had a beautiful rock point coming out but we continued on. Ron and I covered the 5 rod portage into Beartrap by just carrying the canoe fully loaded. Now on Beartrap, we knew we were in the right spot, it was beautiful. I knew only having one campsite this was the place I wanted to be because I didn't want to see people. Another one of my main reasons for being up here. We paddled across the lake west, towards the campsite. This campsite deserves more than 5 stars, it is simply outstanding! The fire pit and makeshift bench were phenomenal. There were plenty of flat rocks too to serve as tables.
We took our time setting up camp and then made lunch. After lunch we explored the lake and did some fishing. We checked out the small waterfall that I am assuming leads to the Beartrap River. Later in the evening towards what Ron calls the "Golden Hour" we picked up a few walleye. The walleye shortly became dinner. Since we fished almost until dark, we finished eating and decided it was time to wash up and head to bed. We had been in the tent for about 45 mins or so and I was just dozing off to sleep when Ron screams and jumps up and the tent moves! Now I don't scare too easily so I assumed he was messing around. I rolled over and looked at him like, "Dude what the hell?" He responds to my blank stare with, "Did you not hear that?" I was still very confused and half asleep so he responded with, "Something just ran into the tent. There was a pitter-patter of small feet then, BAM! A creature ran into the tent." I was now a little shaken up because this was my first true wilderness trip and didn't like the idea of an unknown creature running around. (Later that trip we came to the conclusion of a Pine Marten or Fisher either way we named the creature Pepe). After about an hour of constantly repeating the story to each other we finally drifted off to sleep. About 2 a.m. I woke up to the sound of heavy wind. I looked off to the NW to see some lightning. I woke up Ron and told him we needed to get any clothes off the line and double check that everything is tarped or put in the tent. No sooner did we finish and get into the tent did it cut loose. This was a pretty intense thunderstorm, but I, liking my sleep as much as I do, fell right back to sleep.