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  1. #1
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    Boundarys Waters Trip Help.....

    At the start of planning a trip to the Boundary Waters Next August with my Wife and two girls . I am looking for some help with some trip routes for us for a 5-8 day trip. I have been three times in the past and fell it is time to get my girls up there and let them enjoy the wonders of the outdoors and a canoe. Some info:
    1) WHO:
    Wife - 37 Kind of loves camping Has not found the love of a hammock yet
    Daughter #1 - will be 11 loves her ENO DN and has spent slept in it out doors
    Daughter #2 - Will be 9 Loves her ENO DN and has NOT spent any time out doors in it
    Me 37 Love it all and am trying to use the trip to update allot of the family gear to the good stuff!

    I am trying to do this trip so that every one has his/her own gear and learns the need to pack your own stuff and make sure in is all taken care each day ( of course with a little help from mom and dad)

    2) The Trip:
    I wold like to be away form folks as much as possible and get in and set up some sort of base came and go from there each day for fun and fishing (the fly fishing is some what a large part of the trip but only after everyone is happy and content!)

    3) Food
    All the girls are Vegetarians and i eat meat like it is going out of style . GO figure! so i have a friend who has all the nice equipment for dehydrating but i am looking for some good Veg recipes as i do not want to eat spaghetti every night.

    4) Gear advice:
    For my wife and my self i am thinking some WBBB 1.7 doubles and let the girls use the ENO's with the bug nets. Planing on a couple to 4 DIY tarps. Do we each need a tarp.
    also how handy is a large group tarp for cooking and such? Over Kill? any and all help wold be great!
    Thanks a ton
    ZC

  2. #2
    Senior Member beep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by taimentwin74 View Post
    At the start of planning a trip to the Boundary Waters Next August with my Wife and two girls . I am looking for some help with some trip routes for us for a 5-8 day trip. I have been three times in the past and fell it is time to get my girls up there and let them enjoy the wonders of the outdoors and a canoe. Some info:
    1) WHO:
    Wife - 37 Kind of loves camping Has not found the love of a hammock yet
    Daughter #1 - will be 11 loves her ENO DN and has spent slept in it out doors
    Daughter #2 - Will be 9 Loves her ENO DN and has NOT spent any time out doors in it
    Me 37 Love it all and am trying to use the trip to update allot of the family gear to the good stuff!

    I am trying to do this trip so that every one has his/her own gear and learns the need to pack your own stuff and make sure in is all taken care each day ( of course with a little help from mom and dad)
    With this much lead time, you've got time to schedule some short trips and backyard hangs to give everyone some hands-on experience. You could combine that with some of the home-trial recipes for "al fresco" dinners!

    2) The Trip:
    I wold like to be away form folks as much as possible and get in and set up some sort of base came and go from there each day for fun and fishing (the fly fishing is some what a large part of the trip but only after everyone is happy and content!)
    I'd recommend having some conversation with a good outfitter. They can work with you to get permits and suggest specific routes. Any gear you lack, they can rent you. One I know personally in Ely, MN is Jason Zabokrtsky at http://www.boundarywaterguideservice.com/ Jason is very helpful and a genuinely nice guy. FWIW, he's also a wintertime dogsledding guide at Wintergreen Dogsled Lodge in Ely. If you go in August, the bugs will not be bad.

    3) Food
    All the girls are Vegetarians and i eat meat like it is going out of style . GO figure! so i have a friend who has all the nice equipment for dehydrating but i am looking for some good Veg recipes as i do not want to eat spaghetti every night.
    What about having "campout" dinners at home? Each person can be responsible for researching, cooking and cleanup for ONE meal to try out different recipes. You can rate the results and have a collection of recipes ready to go by your trip date.

    4) Gear advice:
    For my wife and my self i am thinking some WBBB 1.7 doubles and let the girls use the ENO's with the bug nets. Planing on a couple to 4 DIY tarps. Do we each need a tarp.
    also how handy is a large group tarp for cooking and such? Over Kill? any and all help wold be great!
    Thanks a ton
    ZC
    For a canoe trip, having a huge tarp for cooking and just sitting around can be a blessing. If it were me, I'd have a tarp for each hammock PLUS a big "kitchen" tarp.
    Last edited by beep; 07-27-2010 at 11:21.
    "The more I carry the happier I am in camp; the less I carry the happier I am getting there" - Sgt. Rock

  3. #3
    Senior Member Diab's Avatar
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    On my trip to the Boundry waters, I found a "kitchen" tarp to be invaluable. It rained 3 evenings and it was nice to be able to get out of the rain and still be able to cook with my friends.

  4. #4
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    Agree with beep on lots of his ideas.

    1) make sure everybody is going to comfortable in their gear before you go, especially wife and daughter who have not spent much time in the hammocks. Fine for everyone to carry their own clothes and shelter, but remember that the food pack and canoes have to be portaged too. Keep this in mind when planning. Single portage great. Doubling portage ok. Having to triple portage gets old amazingly fast.

    2). The beauty of the BWCA is that there are daily quotas for each entry site. You will see other canoes the closer you are to the entry lake, but because of the quotas it is rare that you are camping near someone else. Again agree with beep re: outfitters. Even if you don't rent, they can give great advice on routes, portage difficulty, fishing, etc. Think about how much paddling your girls are up for in a day. 3 hours? 6 hours? 9 hours? In the rain? Against the wind with rolling whitecaps? You might want to take the first trip easy. One bad trip can ruin it for a long time.

    We have been going to the eastern portion of the BWCA for the last 4 years. Highly recommend http://www.sawbill.com. Awesome folks!

    3) we dehydrate like crazy! Some good resources are books like Lip Smackin' Backpackin', Freezer Bag Cooking and http://www.trailcooking.com/. BPL also has a food forum with tons of great dehydrating tips and recipes. Have your girls think about their favorite veg meals. Most likely there is a way to dehydrate it. Try them before you go.

    4). No major advice about gear as to each their own preference. But if you do WBBB for you and your wife you might consider getting a lefty and a righty foot box so you can hang close with your zippers facing each other and be able to pass things between hammocks. You might consider a larger tarp to hang both hammocks under. We always bring a tarp for cooking/eating under. Again, make sure your wife is ok with hammocks before you go. Mine thought the hammocks were comfortable, but didn't feel we were "together" enough vs. sleeping together in a tent. So we'll be back to ground on our next trip.
    Last edited by BER; 07-27-2010 at 16:24.

  5. #5
    Senior Member exdiver's Avatar
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    You have received some very good advice...
    Kitchen tent is almost a must on our trips. June can be wet and/windy! Good place to gather on inclement days especially if you are in hammocks where everyone would be isolated if they "turn in".
    We also do east side entry through Voyageur Canoe Outfitters...they have some trip planning help on their website canoeit.com Call Mike or Sue in person, they'll be glad to help. Girls might appreciate a waterfall or pictograph along the trip.
    A tow is a good idea to get a jump on mileage away from the crowds. Don't have to travel too many portages in to escape the majority of people.
    Not to sure about bugs/bugnets in August, we do June, Sept they are gone(so say some of our group who have been in Sept.).
    Another good place for ideas and recipes is Quietjourney forum.
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  6. #6
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    I would also recommend Sawbill entry point and maybe a base camp on Alton or Beth. I'm doing a 3 night out of Sawbill in the middle of September as i find the bugs are all but gone about then.

  7. #7
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    I have not paddled the BWCA yet, however; I paddle 30-60 days a year in N. Michigan hosting groups of people and would definitely recommend a rainfly for the group and separate rainflies for the hammocks. Gives you way more options and the ability to be together in inclimate weather. Have FUN!!!!
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  8. #8
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    I have been going to the BWCA since 1988 started with my father every year then and now its my girlfriend and I every year. she really enjoys it.

    BWCA.com is a great site on the same grounds as this one. great information from people who love going the BWCA. my first trip was entry at isabella lake and came out farm lake by going thru clearwater lake off the kawishiwi river. it was a nice paddle good fishing and there was only two portages with some distance on them. an easy and enjoyable trip would be to put in at little isabella river and go to Quadga lake. hang for your trip and come back out.

    Lake One you can put in with no portaging paddle around the number lakes (heavily traveled) and make camp. it is heavily traveled because of the easy portages. i would do an easy trip at first to see if its what your looking for and go for the more difficult routes later.

  9. #9
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    I'll just echo what everyone else said, a few practice nights with an easy bail would be a good idea, cuz once you're out there the "easy bail" may not be an option. Leave some room for a wind day or two, and def. take a kitchen tarp. More than anything, have fun!
    Good luck,
    RED

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  10. #10
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    I have been going to the Quetico for 20+ years. Wish you guys would have been dropping hints back then. Agree with the above comments with the exception of little to no bugs in August. No blackflies to speak of, but sunset will turn on serious moskies for at least an hour of forest- buzzing, skin-biting feasting. Would recommend always take bug nets and repellent into the Quetico.
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