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hamboneco

My buddy and I are hoping to make it in to Little Trout Lake the week after next.   Sitting a canoe has become a little less comfortable over the years, so our idea is to row/pole our way through the channel from Trout Lake in our 16' boat, then row around and drift in Little Trout, while catching some nice walleyes.   Hoping we can get through whatever remains of the beaver dam in the channel without getting in the water.    If anyone has been in to Little Trout lately, does this seem doable?    Poling through the channel always worked years ago when motors were allowed on Little Trout, but of course, things can change in 40+ years.   The only bummer is that I was hoping we could leave the motor on the boat and just not fire it up on Little, but the Ranger Station in Cook told me I must remove it and stash it on the Trout Lake side. 

Also, although I spent quite a bit of time on Little Trout in the late 50's through the early 70's, I've only been in there a couple times since.  If anyone has any advice on fishing locations, I would gladly accept them. 

 

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Spss

I know somebody that was up there a week ago and said they used a conoe and had to portage around the bever dam. He said the dnr won't do nothing to the dam anymore.

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BRULEDRIFTER

The DNR has no authority in managing the BWCA. That's the Federal US Forest Service.  Being it's within the designated wilderness, they won't touch the dam. Like it or not, that's kind of the point of designated wilderness areas.  Let nature do it's thing and man is a visitor that must adapt to nature, not interfere with it.  

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Spss

I figured it was something like that. He said they sure hammered them though.

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JerkinLips

I believe that row boats are not allowed on non-motorized BWCA lakes because the oars/locks are considered mechanized travel.  Just like sailboats and portage wheels aren't allowed in the BWCA.  Might want to check to confirm.

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BigVwalters

I've rowed into little Trout a few times when the water was high.  But if the beaver dam is built up you might have trouble getting through. 

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SkunkedAgain

Row boats are 100% legal in the BWCA. It's the matter of propulsion that can get you into trouble. Paddling or polling is legal but oars are not, because you are using a mechanical advantage.

My advice is to spend some money on nice, comfortable canoe seats. They do exist and would solve your problem.

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JerkinLips

On non-motorized BWCA lakes you are not allowed to use motorized or mechanized methods of travel.  The regulations specifically exclude pontoon boats, sailboats, and sailboards.  No mention of row boats, but the oar locks would be considered illegal because they are mechanized.  I guess you could paddle a row boat, but it wouldn't be pleasant for long trips.

 

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delcecchi

Oar locks are mechanized?   And how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?  

Their rules etc, but that one seems silly.    I do recall seeing some guys rowing a canoe in Quetico and going like a bat out of heck.  

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BRULEDRIFTER

I know bikes and sail boats are a no-no. Portage wheels are ok on a few of the portages into motorized lakes. 

I'm confused on the oar locks, too. The last trip I was on, I was in a group of 3 canoes and 2 of the 3 boats had oar locks and oars. Me and my buddy were dragging a$$ trying to keep up with those guys. They use them every year and haven't been dinged yet, so I would assume they are legal, but maybe they just haven't been pinched by the Feds yet. 

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Cliff Wagenbach

If you really want to be technical a paddle is a mechanical device! It is a lever!

Crazy rules do exist in the BWCA! No horses allowed there either but dog sleds are OK?

Cliff

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Skibo

I was in Little Trout last Friday with my sons and some friends.  The beaver dam has a low spot in the middle with water flowing over it.  Low-draft canoes with people svelter than me were able to get upstream without getting out.  Our canoe required the front paddler to get us started over the dam.  Coming out was not a problem, we just slid right over it.

Regarding rowboats and oars, there was a boat with dual oarlocks on the lake on Friday.  And, if you've ever been in on Opener, you would have seen a bunch of motors standing against trees at the mouth of the river, while the boats are poled and rowed into the lake.

It's an experience.  Everyone needs to do it a time or two.  And, the fishing can be really good or you might have to work a bit for them as we did last Friday.  Of course the wind came up after we were all the way across the lake behind the island!  Happy paddling to all.

Lyle...

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JerkinLips

I recall that the regulations previously excluded row boats specifically but now don't appear to list them.  Maybe they are legal transportation in the BWCA now.

The one that puzzles me is sailboats, the most quiet and simple mode of propulsion.  Why don't they allow these?

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Walleye Guy

Oars and oarlocks are legal in the BWCA.  We have used a rowing kit specifically designed for a canoe for many years in Little Trout, Pine, Oriniack etc. and have been checked by the Forest Service while using them in those lakes.  There was no issue.  One of the forest service guys inquired about where we bought the rowing kit because of interest for his own use.

I have seen many boats in Little Trout where rowing with oars and oarlocks was the only form of propulsion they had. 

The regulations states the following:  "Motor-powered watercraft are permitted only on
the following designated lakes. All other lakes or portions of lakes within the BWCAW are paddle only. Motors may not be used or be in possession on any paddle-only lake. No other motorized or mechanized equipment (including pontoon boats, sailboats, sailboards) is allowed."

In my opinion you are over-analyzing the situation if you are equating the use of oars as motorized or mechanized.

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JerkinLips

Thanks for clarifying the regulations.  I still don't understand how pontoon boats, sailboats, or sailboards would be mechanized, but not a rowboat.

The bigger question I have is would you reveal where you got your rowing kit for your canoe?  I have a 17' square stern that I would love to put oars on.

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Walleye Guy

www.springcreek.com/product/paddle-sports/rowing-outriggers/

 

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hamboneco

Just to close this thread out, my buddy and I opted for the canoe option into Little Trout yesterday.  A rowboat would have been difficult to maneuver over the beaver dams. In the canoe, we had to get out once and wade a few yards going in, but coming out we were able to glide over the dams. The lake was a bit calmer  and the day a bit sunnier than we would have liked, but caught a nice stringer of keeper Walleyes just off the weeds on the reef south of the island, nothing big. The couple other parties we ran into were not killing it but slowly caught a few.

Thanks to all who responded to my initial inquiry.

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