Boundary Waters, Trip Reports, BWCA, Stories

Number Chain Newbies--Guiding Five First-timers on Lakes One, Two and Three
by bottomtothetap

Trip Type: Paddling Canoe
Entry Date: 08/06/2022
Entry & Exit Point: Lake One (EP 30)
Number of Days: 5
Group Size: 6
Trip Introduction:
The seeds for my 2022 BWCA trip were planted in the summer of 2020 as I shared details of a pending canoe trip over a beer with friends Ashley and Debbie. Ashley remarked that such a trip would be something good for her teenage son to try some day. Having guided numerous teen groups in the past, I told her that I could probably make that happen. Then Debbie stated that the Boundary Waters was a "bucket list" item for her as well. Soon we were discussing how I could take her, another married couple we knew, Ashley and her son all on a "newbie" BWCA canoe trip. As soon as 2021 permits were available, I secured one for late August at the Lake One entry. But...that summer's extreme drought and resulting wildfires put an end to those plans when the Boundary Waters was closed and our permit was cancelled. So we re-set to 2022. Then most of the summer I fought a bad back which sometimes made it so I had a hard time moving. Suddenly our trip was in danger again! I did NOT want to cancell again so I aggressively re-habbed enough to be able to do the trip, though I told the group that they would be doing a lot more of my share of the physical work than normal. Finally, come early August, I was able to take Ashley, her son Jakob, married couple Matt and Alicia, and Debbie on their first ever Boundary Waters adventure.
Day 1 of 5
Friday, August 05, 2022 After almost two years of planning, the day was finally here! I was about to introduce five new people to the magic of Minnesota's Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness!

Our group all knows each other from involvement in our local Chamber of Commerce so we decided to first meet up that day at the Chamber's weekly breakfast meeting where we excitedly shared our plans with other attendees (making just a few of them slightly envious!). When the meeting concluded, we all rushed home to gather gear and then reconvened at my house where we loaded up and snapped a few photos before hitting the road to Canoe Country Outfitters in Ely. After checking in with them and securing a few last items of gear, it was off to Sir G's for pizza and beer. We then concluded the evening at the apartment over CCO's store with a few more beverages and lots of smart talk before our heads hit the pillows, full of anticipation for getting on the water early the next day.