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JBMasterAngler

My family and another family will be camping in Ely over 4th of july weekend. On that saturday we're planning a canoe day trip. I'm not sure which outfitter/location we'll rent from yet. But what are some good beginner friendly lakes in or outside of the BWCA?

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Steve Foss

I'd say hit South Hegman, North Hegman and Trease. It's in the Bdub. Short trip up the Echo Trail, short portage down to South Hegman, and the pictographs just above the water on the sheer cliff to the left as you're about to exit North Hegman into Trease. Very short portage between South and North Hegman (like only a few yards). No portaging needed from North Hegman to Trease.

We did that trip the first summer we moved up here and it was nice. We had a picnic lunch at a campsite on the north shore of Trease. All three lakes are fairly small, so it's not a long/hard day of paddling at all.

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mbeyer

Fall lake. It has outfitters right on shore. A gateway to BWCA.

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Beegreen111

I second Fall Lake. You can rent from PackSack Canoe and paddle the length of the lake to get into the BWCA or rent in town and drive them to the campground boat launch and you are real close to the BWCA. The portage is short into Newton by the roll dam on Fall. Good luck and have fun.

Brad

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JBMasterAngler

That hegman deal sounds pretty good. But yeah, I definitely need it to be as simple as possible. Something to rent at whichever lake we choose. The other family is beginners, and when I mean beginners, I mean BEGINNERS! We'll also have 4 kids all under 5. Aside from being an easy canoe day, I'm most concerned about the newbies being able to catch fish. Some fast smallie action would be ideal. Thanks for the help so far.

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Jmnhunter

hey JB, i'm in the same situation you are for next week as my inlaws want to experience the BWCA for the day and they dont have any experience. I really like steve's suggestion and will probably lean towards that to see the pictographs and some fishing.

I'll let you know how it goes

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chucker1101

I'd say hit South Hegman, North Hegman and Trease. It's in the Bdub. Short trip up the Echo Trail, short portage down to South Hegman, and the pictographs just above the water on the sheer cliff to the left as you're about to exit North Hegman into Trease. Very short portage between South and North Hegman (like only a few yards). No portaging needed from North Hegman to Trease.

We did that trip the first summer we moved up here and it was nice. We had a picnic lunch at a campsite on the north shore of Trease. All three lakes are fairly small, so it's not a long/hard day of paddling at all.

+1

This is a decent day trip without any serious portages. I've taken my father on this one, and the portages are pretty easy, plus as mentioned, the pictographs are a definite must see.

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chaffmj

Quote:
That hegman deal sounds pretty good. But yeah, I definitely need it to be as simple as possible. Something to rent at whichever lake we choose.

There is no rental at the Hegman BWCA entrance, just a parking lot for people headed in to use. There are lakes up the Echo where you can rent canoes but you are limited. Big Lake and Fenske have resorts on them that rent canoes.

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JBMasterAngler

I just did a quick search, and found that there is an outfitter on lake one. How is that lake? I'm going to do some further research, but would love to hear from some people that have fished/paddled it.

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Steve Foss

That hegman deal sounds pretty good. But yeah, I definitely need it to be as simple as possible. Something to rent at whichever lake we choose. The other family is beginners, and when I mean beginners, I mean BEGINNERS! We'll also have 4 kids all under 5. Aside from being an easy canoe day, I'm most concerned about the newbies being able to catch fish. Some fast smallie action would be ideal. Thanks for the help so far.

If you want to rent canoes on the lake you're paddling, that leaves out Hegman. Didn't realize from your OP that was a constraint.

I'd say Fall, as others have recommended. Or the Kawishiwi/Lake One. That's really nice country.

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delcecchi

Unless you have absolutely no way to get a canoe to hegman, I would go there. Especially if this is a paddle around to look at stuff kind of trip.

I would even check out getting a shuttle from an outfitter in ely for the canoe(s).

The pictographs are as good as any I have seen, and I just got back from a week on Quetico Lake. The bog is full of pitcher plants and other interesting stuff. All in all, I thought it was top notch. Day use permits are free and self issued.

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Jmnhunter

hey JB just got back from ely, and took Steve's suggestion on Thursday. My inlaws and wife have never been in the bwca and had limited canoe experience, and they LOVED it! it was a really cool trip, we did it within 3 hours, but we sped it up at the end as some showers were moving in. not sure how many people you plan on bringing but there were 4 of us and we took 2 canoes 1 pickup; the guys at Pine point lodge set us up and they were awesome to work with and they gave us the history behind the pictographs. the trip shows everything that the bwca has to offer. the 1st portage is a 1/4 of a mile with some terrain but it was manageable, my father in law has never portaged before and he was fine with the light canoes we rented; and the 2nd "portage" was just a good break to stretch the legs walk 10 yds and your in the water again. the hegman lakes are really nice with some cool terrain and the pictographs looked as if they were drawn a few days ago. so if you can pull it off, i would definately do it.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • IronDioPriest
      Hi folks... I wanna specifically address fishermen and women, boaters, outdoorsmen and women, and their spouses and significant others. Also, anyone who believes that our right to access public waterways supported by our tax dollars, and managed for our benefit by the DNR, should not be infringed upon by special interests... listen up... You may or may not know about a new program in Wright County to limit access to three lakes in the Annandale area where wealthy lake-home associations have coerced the County Board into implementing a pre-launch "AIS Inspection Station" in the city of Annandale. Anyone wishing to launch a watercraft on Lakes Sylvia, Pleasant, and John, must first travel to the city of Annandale (miles away from any boat landing), go through an inspection process, and be given permission to launch their boat in the form of a zip-tie on the trailer. There are MANY problems with this inspection regime. One problem is its hours of operation. It is open from sunup to sundown. This means that if you wish to go fishing in the evening, or at night, or early in the morning, you must first travel to Annandale THE DAY BEFORE you wish to access the lake, and get your zip-tie. Needless to say, this will undoubtedly prove to be a big enough burden on boaters and anglers that many will simply choose to go elsewhere, which, we contend, is the unstated goal of the Lake Associations who have funded this effort to lobby the County Board. They want non-residents off "their" lake. Another problem is the fact that these lakes are already unfortunately infested with AIS, which means inspecting boats on the way IN to the lake makes no logical sense. Only inspecting boats in their way OUT of an infested lake will have any chance of slowing or halting the spread of AIS. Another problem is that local businesses in Annandale, Southhaven, and to a lesser extent Clearwater and Maple Lake, will be adversely affected by the reduction in commerce that WILL occur as people from outside these fine communities decide to take their watercraft elsewhere. Another problem is the scope of this program, and the stated goals of those who are promoting it. They have said point-blank that they hope to have every county in MN look to Wright County as an example of what can be pushed through, as Lake Associations state-wide are organizing their resources and their political clout in an effort to see similar County ordinances implemented throughout Minnesota. This could, in the future, lead to a scenario where every boater who does not own lake property will first be required to travel to a central County Inspection Station in whatever county they wish to launch their boat, before they will be given permission to launch at a lake that may be many miles away from the station. We believe this is an infringement on the rights of Minnesota boaters and sportsmen to freely and responsibly access our public waterways. Even the DNR is skeptical of this program, but since it is a county matter, they are accepting it for now. Sorry for the lengthy statement. Now I'd like to ask you to take action. We have organized a social media page, over 600-strong now.... Our goal is to gather as many concerned people as we can in this group - and then appeal to the Chambers of Commerce in these fine cities, to organize themselves and appeal to the County Board for a reversal of this misguided policy, on the grounds that it will harm them economically as people take their dollars elsewhere to avoid the infringement of the inspection regime. If you haven't already, and you are concerned about liberty to access public waterways without undue burdens placed upon your access, would you consider lending your voice to ours, and joining our group? Thank you! Join Us!
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