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Boundary Waters Quetico Forum :: Listening Point - General Discussion :: Mice
 
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gopher2307
08/09/2020 09:52PM
 
Same lake three site last week...did see three large garter snakes. Sunning themselves during the day, and I saw them coming out at night too, I assume to get some mice.


Agreed, I was much more comfortable with the snakes!


I hate those fricken mice, man!
 
LindenTree
08/10/2020 09:16AM
 
I was on Perent Lake the end of May, left my hat outside my tent all night. Woke up in the morning to see mice had chewed on it. Had that hat close to 10 years and that was the first time I ever had Mice chewing on it.
 
ducks
08/10/2020 10:09AM
 
We stayed in a cabin at Rockwood for a week and they said that the mice have been crazy for everyone on the Gunflint Trail this year. Grand Marais ran out of mouse traps. I also saw that the Trail Center had posted on facebook about how bad the mice are this year.
 
Spartan2
08/10/2020 12:21PM
 
mooseplums: "Mice ...be sure to dump your water buckets or cook pots before bed.
I've found. drowned mice in them."



This has happened to us, too.


Has anyone every encountered "kangaroo mice"? They are incredibly cute, big ears, hop like a kangaroo. Our son discovered some of them on the only trip we took with our kids, which would have been 1988. I had retired for the night, but I opened the flap enough to see them hopping around. Never had seen them before and never saw them again. Just that one night on Back Bay.



 
timatkn
08/06/2020 07:33AM
 
It really varies. Had one year where for an hour it seemed like 30 of them were trying to get into our tent at night. Probably only 5...but seemed like 30...Eventually they left, but it was weird. Most trips I don’t see them.


T
 
deerfoot
08/12/2020 09:16AM
 
Mouse damage on nature center canoe.
 
carmike
08/06/2020 08:31AM
 
HangLoose: "I once camped at a BWCAW site where a group of mice would climb my tent guy lines and then slide down the rain fly of my tent over and over and over again. I have no doubt that they were just playing and having fun. Fairly common to see mice at campsites. I've never felt they were a nuisance. "


I'm glad to hear this has happened to at least one other person...because the same thing happened to me on one of my first solo trips and it bothered me a lot. Just an unsettling sight/sound, especially with a bad case of first-time solo heebie jeebies.



 
snakecharmer
08/06/2020 07:55PM
 
The mice turned my roll of TP into a pompom on one trip. NOT GOOD!!!
 
Banksiana
08/10/2020 01:54PM
 
Jumping Mice or Zapus Hudsonious are very cute and quite common. More difficult to trap, but I still get quite a few in my hippie built open-mouse house. Primarily nocturnal, rarely seen in daylight unless its quite cloudy. As Spartan2 noted "incredibly cute".


It does seem to be a banner year for mice. I dread the body count when the fall influx comes; its already bad enough in the height of summer.
 
MNSummer63
08/04/2020 08:32AM
 
Hi everyone! My son and just got back from our trip. This was our second year. We love it as a fun thing to do together. However, this year, unlike last year, we had issues with mice in our camp. We were on Parent Lake and came in via Hog Creek. Is this a common problem? Any information or advice would be helpful. Thanks!
 
inspector13
08/10/2020 02:02PM
 
Spartan2: "Has anyone every encountered "kangaroo mice"? They are incredibly cute, big ears, hop like a kangaroo. Our son discovered some of them on the only trip we took with our kids, which would have been 1988. I had retired for the night, but I opened the flap enough to see them hopping around. Never had seen them before and never saw them again. Just that one night on Back Bay."
They were probably Woodland Jumping mice.

Video.

What most people call kangaroo mice are native to the desert southwest.


 
MNSummer63
08/04/2020 08:48AM
 
Thanks for the reply. I thought it was strange to have so many issues this year and not have a single problem our first year.
 
CityFisher74
08/10/2020 04:31PM
 
Almost always see Mice at camp sites. Many don't notice them because often I see them not come out until sunset. They are pretty small too so you just need to stop and look at the ground and notice the movements. They are so used to humans that you can simply step on them to kill them (a friend told me this...).
 
Savage Voyageur
08/04/2020 08:42AM
 
Yes they are a problem. I have more trouble with them getting into our food pack than all other animals. One of them snacked away inside our food pack up in the tree. I think we closed it in and he went to town on our food. Mini bears are a problem.
 
yellowcanoe
08/04/2020 09:01AM
 
MNSummer63: "Thanks for the reply. I thought it was strange to have so many issues this year and not have a single problem our first year. "


Not so strange when you think of the way rodent populations ( Including squirrels and chipmunks) vacillate. When there is a good natural food year they breed over and over and over producing too many! The next year not so much natural food and too many rodents they will come looking for your food.


Same as home : we live in the woods. There is a lot of natural food this year and next year we expect to see squirrels swimming ISO food from anywhere.
 
MikeinMpls
08/04/2020 08:59AM
 
I had one chew a hole into my thwart bag two weeks ago. I had accidentally left a Clif bar in the bag. The hole isn't too big. I don't think the mouse liked Clif bars.


Mice are omnipresent, but often overlooked as a potential pest. They will make a mess of a pack.


Mike
 
straighthairedcurly
08/04/2020 10:20AM
 
I only spotted one this year so far, but have commonly had them around. One time I was resting in the tent, felt a tug on my hair, and rolled over only to come face to face with beady little mouse eyes. Not sure why or how he had ventured in, we never have food around tents.
 
fadersup
08/04/2020 11:02AM
 
I've had them chew holes in packs and straps, they are pests for sure.
 
Zulu
08/04/2020 01:18PM
 
Like the cartoon character Jinx the cat always said “I hate meeses to pieces”.
 
HangLoose
08/04/2020 01:16PM
 
I once camped at a BWCAW site where a group of mice would climb my tent guy lines and then slide down the rain fly of my tent over and over and over again. I have no doubt that they were just playing and having fun. Fairly common to see mice at campsites. I've never felt they were a nuisance.
 
boonie
08/04/2020 02:31PM
 
Oddly enough, in about 18 trips I've never had a problem and rarely seen one.
 
Wolfee
08/04/2020 02:18PM
 
I used to like to bring my big labrador-mix along on trips, just to watch her slow clumsy attempts to try and catch the mice. Cheap entertainment...


Yes, the mice are pretty much everywhere. Started using vittle vaults back in the late 90s and haven't had an issue with mice getting in to the food since.
 
tomo
08/10/2020 05:15PM
 
Paddled the Flambeau river last fall and had mice all over my campsite once the sun set, including running up my tent between the tent and fly (was happy I didn't use my lean 2 as a shelter in that instance). Been catching mice in the basement in the last week, so it's on!
 
mychurchmyhome
08/04/2020 02:47PM
 
Hang your food pack, that helps. Better for the mice and rodents than bears most days.
 
shock
08/04/2020 04:19PM
 
the shale site on Gogebic , the mice with run over your feet at sundown and drag anything away they can find. i'm sure they have a freeway underneath all that shale.
 
Jaywalker
08/04/2020 05:06PM
 
About 25 paddling trips and I’ve not had any mouse troubles other than one night on Lac La Croix when they kept running over the netting on my tent. No food issues and no chewing.
 
MNSummer63
08/04/2020 06:35PM
 
"I once camped at a BWCAW site where a group of mice would climb my tent guy lines and then slide down the rain fly of my tent over and over and over again.” Yes! This happened to us as well. I found it unsettling and didn’t sleep that well that night.
 
yellowcanoe
08/16/2020 02:41PM
 
chessie: "rodents, not bears are the reason we switched to bear barrels rather than hanging food pack. Mice can scale down the rope to the pack, and seem to know exactly where to chew through to get the good stuff (gorp). And, after all the damage to large tree limbs I saw on recent trip, I am more convinced that barrels are the way to go!"


What is a bear barrel? The blue ones with the snap on rim and metal band are hardly bear proof. Very good for rodents however. With a cotter pin through the band latch hole also raccoon proof.


The stash and hide method does seem to work. I have used barrels for 25 years and never had a bear problem but I don't have any illusions of bear not being able to get into it.


A true bear canister is so expensive heavy and limiting in volume it does not suit my tripping style. Others do use them successfully.


The mice ought to have had too much fun reproducing this year that when next year comes and not so many trip they may have a big die off.
 
MNSummer63
08/04/2020 06:30PM
 
vittle vaults? What is that? I’ll try anything. I don’t mind bugs, chipmunks, squirrels, or most any creature, but I don’t like mice at all. Thanks!
 
Wolfee
08/04/2020 06:52PM
 
MNSummer63: "vittle vaults? What is that? I’ll try anything. I don’t mind bugs, chipmunks, squirrels, or most any creature, but I don’t like mice at all. Thanks!"


Vittles vaults is a brand name for pet food storage containers. They come in a bunch of different sizes and have an airtight seal with an o-ring and gamma lid. I don't think they are bear-proof like the "bear vaults" containers. Could probably be smashed open by a determined bear.


Vittles vault


I use the 4350, but i some people like the smaller sizes to fit them into other packs. I made a janky homemade harness out of webbing, minicel foam, and duct tape:) for mine and carry like a backpack. Not the most comfortable carry for my torso, but my wife says it fits her fine.


Search on this site and I'm sure you'll find some threads about them.

 
gopher2307
08/04/2020 10:19PM
 
Just back from Lake Three...had plenty of mice at night there. Made for an early bed time. I hate mice as much as Larry from the Alone show does.


10 years ago, coincidentally also on Lake Three, had an incredible amount of mice every night. We would have a lantern going and the mice would hang in the shadow. As we ate dinner after sun down, a mouse ran up my buddies back, so as to stay in the dark shadow he created. I was able to dispatch said mouse, still on his back, with a spatula. Larry would have been proud. My friend did not finish his dinner and has yet to return to the Bdubs.
 
salukiguy
08/09/2020 06:33PM
 
Had a mouse eat a whole in the top of my friends brand new tent. It dropped into the tent and the two tent mates were scrabbling around at 2 in the morning trying to get it out. They never did find it but it probably left when they tooK everything out of the tent. We were on an island site that was overrun with mice.
 
LittoralZone
08/09/2020 12:12PM
 
Inmyelement: "I'll take snakes over mice any day."


+1
 
treehorn
08/05/2020 10:50AM
 
gopher2307: " I hate mice as much as Larry from the Alone show does.
"



Nobody hates mice as much as Larry!

 
Bushman
08/05/2020 09:44AM
 
We had a chipmunk climb up our food barrel and begin licking the tap to our box of wine. It was funny at first but after a few shoo aways he didn't get the message so we moved it where he couldn't get it.
We had a few mice running around but they kept to themselves. I think they search the firepit areas looking for tidbits. They found none and disappeared soon after.
 
Canoearoo
08/05/2020 11:05AM
 
There is a reason people call them Mini Bears
 
hexnymph
08/05/2020 11:26AM
 
They get a few warnings from me before things get fatal.


Hex
 
GopherAdventure
08/05/2020 12:01PM
 
MikeinMpls: "I had one chew a hole into my thwart bag two weeks ago. I had accidentally left a Clif bar in the bag. The hole isn't too big. I don't think the mouse liked Clif bars.



Mice are omnipresent, but often overlooked as a potential pest. They will make a mess of a pack.



Mike"



Lol! Was it one of the new coffee flavored ones? Because I’d have to agree with the mouse, those are nasty! I always go with the Sierra Trail Mix, Oatmeal Raisin and Blueberry Crisp.


Tony
 
greywolf33
08/12/2020 01:43PM
 
Our group stayed one night on the Shell Lake campsite closest to the Little Shell portage this past week and it is OVERRUN by the varmints! Some fool also carved what looked to be initials on a red pine in camp...sad and stupid...SMH.
 
chessie
08/14/2020 09:01AM
 
rodents, not bears are the reason we switched to bear barrels rather than hanging food pack. Mice can scale down the rope to the pack, and seem to know exactly where to chew through to get the good stuff (gorp). And, after all the damage to large tree limbs I saw on recent trip, I am more convinced that barrels are the way to go!
 
johnnyg08
11/30/2020 09:15AM
 
Yeah, I'm in your camp.
Once I hear the noise, that is all I will hear the rest of the night. Gonna have to be ear buds or something...b/c that would drive me nuts!
 
johnnyg08
11/30/2020 02:51PM
 
brp: "...by the end of the trip you're carrying around a barrel of air. "


Ha! Isn't that the truth?!
 
dex8425
08/12/2020 04:08PM
 
They are a problem, especially this year with SO. Many. People. Messy campsites lead to mice proliferation, usually for the next group who tries to use that campsite.


To make a long story short, mice are why we will never bring our tarptent (An A frame backpacking shelter with no floor or solid walls) to the BWCA again. We tried to cook and eat out of the rain and mice were running over our legs. Disgusting. Somehow I still slept that night and thankfully they didn't damage anything, like chewing a hole in my quilt or something. There were so many I could step on them and kill them.
 
brp
11/30/2020 01:55PM
 
The Ursack is a bear proof "canvas" bag. I imagine that mice cannot chew into it if a bear can't. I've never used one, but barrels bug me as they are heavy, large, hard to pack and by the end of the trip you're carrying around a barrel of air.
 
4keys
08/09/2020 12:52PM
 
snakecharmer: "The mice turned my roll of TP into a pompom on one trip. NOT GOOD!!!"


Very not good! I usually keep mine in a plastic bag next to the tent (under vestibule at night), so far no problems, but I may have to reconsider.

 
mooseplums
08/09/2020 05:21PM
 
snakecharmer: "The mice turned my roll of TP into a pompom on one trip. NOT GOOD!!!"


Haha I remember that trip. It was a Oct trip on Disappointment Lake many years ago.
 
mooseplums
08/09/2020 05:23PM
 
Mice ...be sure to dump your water buckets or cook pots before bed.
I've found. drowned mice in them.
 
mschi772
11/30/2020 04:32PM
 
brp: "The Ursack is a bear proof "canvas" bag. I imagine that mice cannot chew into it if a bear can't. I've never used one, but barrels bug me as they are heavy, large, hard to pack and by the end of the trip you're carrying around a barrel of air. "


Standard Ursacks are not rodent-resistant. That is why they have the Ursack Minor and Allmitey.
 
Inmyelement
08/06/2020 08:22AM
 
We were also on Lake 3 recently but didn't have any mice. Could have been due to the family of snakes that resided at the site. I'll take snakes over mice any day.
 
BearBurrito
08/05/2020 04:30PM
 
I have never had a problem with them, I have only seen a few while camping. I seem to have more in my backyard than I have ever seen in the woods.