bwca: day 5

bwca: day 5


  • 2 lakes
  • 2 rivers
  • 5 portages
  • 1 big meal
  • 1 beer
  • 1 shower-less campsite 🙁

i figured out the secret to my sleep pad and had a great-for-camping night’s sleep. we broke camp fairly quickly and set out shortly after 9 a.m. it was a little gloomy, which was ok because it mean no sun – no heat – an and easy, sweat-free paddle. it was a long slog because we camped at the far end of lake agnes, but it was about 5 hours to the trailhead.

mr. beaver was hard at work while were out. not only did we slide up/push through 4-5 dam, but we actually had to get out and pull our canoe over one of them. busy beavers!

i might like canoeing the rivers more than the lakes. the trees are tall and surround you like you imagine they should. maybe hugging the shorelines of the lakes would make me feel differently. the tall pines and aspen are really beautiful.

i wouldn’t have minded paddling longer yesterday for a shorter day today, but that’s ok. steady as the beating drum! unless the portage is short, i really don’t notice the difference between all the distances. it’s all just one foot in front of the other with 40 lbs on your back.

after we got out, it was another hour-ish to ely, where i dropped off the canoe and remembered there was  pandemic happening and forgot my mask when i went to the gas station. we went to a brewery for a post-trip meal, and it was delish. i had a patty melt, fries, and beer and i could’ve died in food heaven.

then it was time to part ways. i had a campsite at judge cr magney and the weather’s not forecast horribly, so i decided to head northeast. looking back, i probably should’ve just gone home.

i stopped in grand marais to hopefully get some pie, but no luck. i stopped at a holiday station for a cookie and a muffin and some tea instead. tomorrow i’ll stop at the rustic inn for a slice.

i realized as i was driving in that the park might not have the showers open. and i was right. —sigh —

so i washed my hair under my water jug and heated water to wash my face and for tea. so here i am in front of a fire with a wet head. i’m excited for my cot and my pillow.

it’s very weird going form almost complete silence in the evenings to a low chatter among people in a campground and the occasional passing car on the highway just down the road. in the BWCA, a jet would pass over occasionally (MSP to…?? toronto to seattle?) it was such a weird, out of place sound. and now i wouldn’t notice.

i just looked up at the sky and saw a lone star among the trees. if the sky continues to clear, more will pop. a commonality among the north.

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