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Chauncey

Non BWCA trip possibilities

15 posts in this topic

I'm sure I'm not the only one to miss out on a overnight motor permit into the BW, any suggestions on lakes in northern MN that would suit a week camping adventure? I really love the big smallie and big northern possibilities. Thanks in advance!

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There are many, but let me suggest one. Birch Lake. 17 miles of lake, with very limited developed shoreline. Several camping spots with fire grates. It is currently being managed as a trophy northern lake, with several 15-25# taken every year. The smallies are getting there. Not known as a premier smallmouth lake, the population has been growing quickly the last ten years and are now in catchable numbers and respectable size.

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I had a great trip a couple of years ago floating the Vermillion river. Ed at Vermillion Dam Lodge can set you up and might even have a cabin open the night before the trip. Walleyes are abundant under the rapids, and long flat stretches give up some pike and an occasional musky. Pull out in Byke to restock head for Crane lake. Smallmouth the whole way.

Campsites are limited and there is some private property, but have never had any trouble finding a place to stay. No special regs on the river until you get to Crane lake. This is a canoe trip, with many underused portages. Many people enter the river halfway and go up or down river to avoid portages or to fish with small motor boats. Pine point lodge can also answer questions about the gorge(must see spot)and fishing on Crane.

If I was insistant on fishing a motor boat, Vermillion would be my first choice. Campsites a more difficult to find during busy season but there is alway the park to fall back on.

White Iron, Farm, Garden lake chain is a great place to catch a monster pike-so is Birch out by Babbit. Bearhead state park and the number lakes also worth a look. There are many opportunities out of Ely that are not in the BWCA but have the same beauty. Sometimes they can be less crowded than the "put in" lakes, like Fall, Moose or other half in half out lakes. Good luck, Hans.

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Kabetogama, Rainy, Namakan. You pretty much can't beat this triplet. Great island campsites available too. If you are looking for solitude, I would go in early May or late September/October. Although I had a really nice solo trip in late August. Summer months there can get pretty hectic with power boats and skiers and such.

GE

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I like going to snowbank. Half in the bw. Not a lot of northerns but have caught some nice ones. Last year the smallies were rediculous. Nice walleyes if you can find them. Nice camp sites.

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All good suggestions listed above-could also add that there are several lakes off teh gunflint/arrowhead trail w/ remote/boat in sites and Wabana/bluewater area around grand rapids have nice some boat in campsites. I like to basecamp and then do little daytrips to smaller potholes-you never know what you may find and usually have teh lakes to your self.

redhooks

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Lake Vermillion, Whiteface Resivor, Birch Lake, Crane Lake, Echo Lake, Pelican Lake

There are a few to start with.

Do you want to stay at an individual campsite or a campground?

Do you want remote/rough or to have some ammenities (such as showers and flush toilettes?

What size boat/motor will you be using? Do you need a concrete landing or would a cary down work?

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Chauncey,

There are about 4-6 camping spots on Burntside (some are unauthorized). Great for smallies, big walleyes, northerns, and lake trout.

Depends on the time of year for each of the species listed.

When would you be coming up???

For more info, call my shop 218-365-4744 on Sunday mornings and I can tell you further details.

Great lake, not much traffic during the week!!

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Thanks for the helpful advice! The previous two yrs I went into Pipestone/Jackfish via Moose Lake in mid May, I would prefer early in the yr or late in the season to avoid the bugs. When do the bugs clear in the fall? Sept? I have a 14' with 25HP that is portageable, but I would have to use wheels. Do you need any forest/camping permits to enter these lakes mentioned? Who maintains the campsites? Are they mapped out anywhere? I do not need any amenities, just a peacefull campsite in the wilderness and big Jacks/Smallies!

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Chauncey no you do not need permits for the sights on the lakes mentioned. They are first come first served. Come with a wilderness latrine and a fire grate. I believe they are all maintained byt he forest service. Kab,nam and crane would be maintained by the national park service. All the lakes mentioned are good lakes.

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Some even have the bear proof food locker....which is very nice to have. I love those things. You can put all your stuff in there at night and about the only thing that is going to get in is the mice. I always put my food in a rubbermaid bin too so the mice aren't even an issue. It's a good thing God did not create most animals with opposable thumbs!! I think my trips this year will consist of Rainy, Saganaga, Birch, possibly the Vermillion or Rainy River, and a whole bunch of daytrips into small walk-in lakes off the echo trail and the ely area. I am looking forward to it.

GE

GE

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GoggleEye, Thats funny! I have close to the same plans for my summer fishing! I work in west st paul. wonder if ive seen you around. those walk in lakes are sounding good right now!

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Fishon, well I am always looking for people to go on trips with. Usually I can't find anyone to go with me so I pack up the truck and boat and off I go by myself. I moved here not too long ago and so I know pretty much nobody besides my girlfriend, which is the reason I am always fishing alone. If you ever want to hook up and go throw some lines in, let me know. I live in west st. paul but work in wisconsin, so I fish a lot over there too.

GoggleEye

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Chauncey check out these web sites. There are a ton of options. Anything from backcountry water access sites to campgrounds with flush toilets and hot showers.

http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/superior/recreation/camping/back_camp.php

http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/superior/recreation/camping/rustic_camp.php

http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/superior/recreation/camping/fee_camp.php

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You can't beat Voyageurs National Park for a boat and remote camping experience.

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