Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness-Angleworm to Mudrow Lake

TRIP LOG: Submitted by Taylor Ham, February 2016

BWCAW Canoe Trip Photo courtesy Taylor Ham

On October 1st 2015 my friend Cole and I set out on a four day canoe trip in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. We put in on Angleworm which was a two mile portage just to get to the lake. We packed as light as we could to make the portages as fast as possible.

In the first day we portaged 1,413 rods total, it was surprisingly enough a short day, we set up camp around 2 and were able to take a nap. The nights dipped down to close to 35 degrees, during the day the temperature was around 55 and sunny, we couldn’t have asked for better weather so late in the season in the Northwoods. The next day we spent mostly paddling, the wind picked up making it difficult to pass large lakes. We paddled through Friday bay into Thursday bay down and into Wednesday bay then we set up camp on the Basswood river. The campsite we picked was so beautiful, it had many tall red pines surrounding the fire grate. We gathered firewood and spent the rest of the night around the fire. The next day was a shorter paddle so we decided to enjoy our campsite for another few hours before packing up camp. The sunrise was spectacular at this campsite. When we packed our camp up we set out for the Horse River, the paddle there was the best out of the whole trip. The Basswood River flowed through beautiful rock walls that towered at least 50-100 feet in the air. We sat in our canoe and gazed at them for close to an hour, we knew we were behind schedule but we didn’t care. When we started paddling again the bow seat broke making it impossible to put weight on it fully, so we had to pull over and I used paracord to fix the seat to the best of my ability and it held up for the rest of the trip.

BWCAW Canoe Trip Photo courtesy Taylor Ham

When we made it to the Horse River it was an easy paddle, no navigation required, although we did have to get out a few times to walk our canoe through very low running water. When we made it out of the River it was getting late at this point and we had to settle for a campsite that was not very nice at all, but we were so tired we didn’t care. We made our food that night and went straight to bed. The last morning was very cold. So we packed up as fast as we could and got on the water. We were about two lakes from our exit point and we were just talking about where we were going to go eat as soon as we took a sauna. Our last portage from Sandpit lake into Mudrow lake was very difficult terrain, which made it one of our most difficult portages, but we finally made it to Mudrow and paddled out to our car. In 3 1/2 days we traveled about 40 miles and 6 of those miles were portages. It was a great experience for my friend and I and I’m glad we got to do it together. Although it was only a short time it had an huge impact on my life and I will never forget this trip.

BWCAW Canoe Trip Photo courtesy Taylor Ham

BWCAW Canoe Trip Photo courtesy Taylor Ham


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