Father’s Day Walleye

Bob and his son Ben spent father’s day in the BWCA. I can’t imagine a more fitting place to spend quality time with your son. Ben caught his dad some walleye and smallmouth bass and we celebrated with a delicious boundary waters fish fry.

Coffee and Bacon

Bacon and a cup (or 3) of Gene Hicks coffee makes the Boundary Waters an even better place. If you want to add some Ely flavor to your BWCA mornings, then bring along Gene Hicks gourmet coffee. The Good Morning blend shown above is my favorite coffee in the world. We pack it with all…

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Flooded Portage Near Oyster Lake

The portage trail between Hustler and Oyster Lakes in the BWCA is challenging. It is about a mile long. And it is known to be flooded for about a hundred feet at the Oyster end. Some recent rains meant a particularly deep wade for us today. We decided to put the canoes down, load them…

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White-tailed Buck on the Little Indian Sioux River

I launched a six day BWCA canoe trip with father and son guests from Chicago today. Bob snapped this photo of a white-tailed buck grazing near our entry point on the Little Indian Sioux River. This young buck has velvet on his antlers, and hardly seemed to mind us paddling past him. The buck appears…

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Smallmouth Bass Spawning Bed

The smallmouth bass are on their beds now. The male smallmouth bass have recently created visible beds in shallow waters along the shores of BWCA lakes and rivers. The male bass makes the bed by fanning the sand and gravel away from an area near a rocky shoreline. If a female bass is impressed, then…

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Beatty Rail Portage

An option for people who want to enter the BWCA or Quetico from the west end is to take a motorboat tow to Lac La Croix. The motor tow is an adventure in itself. During the trip to La Croix from Crane Lake, the motorboat is twice loaded onto a cart and pulled across portages…

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Dragonfly Nymph

I turned over some submerged stones in a BWCA lake this week looking for crayfish. Instead of crayfish, I spotted this dragonfly nymph. Dragonflies spend most of their lives under water in a nymph stage. As nymphs, they are aggressive predators. They are carnivorous and primarily eat insects, but are known to eat vertebrates such…

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BWCA Tombstone of Ella Hall

I know of one tombstone in the BWCA. It identifies the grave of Ella Hall. Over a century ago, the teenage Ella died on the lake that bears her name. I took this photo recently at the grave site. In the million-acre-plus BWCA it seems there should be more marked grave sites. I would enjoy…

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Back to Civilization

After a fun week of venturing through the BWCA with David and his sons, we returned to civilization today. This trip made memories of varied weather (sun, clouds, wind, rain…); long paddling days; an excursion to Thunder Point; sighting lots of wildlife including eagles, moose, otter, and loons; fishing for lake trout, pike, and walleye;…

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Juneberry Tree in Bloom – The “Popcorn Tree”

Sitting around our campfire on Disappointment Lake, David asked about the “popcorn tree” behind the tents. What a perfect description! Juneberry trees are covered in spectacular white blooms now. From a distance, they appear to be covered in snow white popcorn. Juneberry trees are often called “serviceberry trees.” Serviceberry is probably a more appropriate name…

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