Canoe Trip Report

Boundary Waters – Round to Seagull Lake Canoe Trip

Entry Date: August 9, 2010
Trip Length: 2 Days
Permit Required: Brant Lake (#52)- BWCA
Group Size: 3
Submitted by: Liz


Two weeks in a row Katelyn and I had the day off together. To make it even better, Ethan had the day off with us as well. We didn’t even have to talk about if we would take another trip or not. The only question was where we would go. Turns out we didn’t have much of a say, at least on where we would begin. We booked the very last permit in the Gunflint Trail district of the BWCA, and started planning our route, which was pretty ambitious for a two day trip with a Brant Lake entry point.

Monday, August 9, 2010:

Tsunsethe days until our trip flew by, as they had all summer. Katelyn and I were absolutely jacked to go on another trip, and Ethan was too, though I knew he was a bit worried about going on a trip with the two of us…..We can be a bit overwhelming at times. I could see the fear in his eyes the day before we left when we were having an in depth conversation about sports bras. Another day went by, and we left on our adventure. I don’t think any of us had a clue as to how much of an adventure it would be. We got dropped off at Round Lake, and decided we didn’t need to get the map out for the very first lake. We didn’t figure out until about a half hour later that we had taken the wrong portage out of the first lake. After about twenty minutes on what was supposed to be a 100 rod portage, Katelyn and I started commenting on how it had been the very longest 100 rod portage ever. Probably a mile into the portage, Ethan was running back to us with a look of shock on his face. We laughed at him until he told us we were on the Tusc portage. We looked at each other for a few seconds, not quite sure what to do. Then we laughed harder.

Even with the accidental change of plans, we had a goal in mind that night. Deb told us that we wouldn’t be able to make it to Ogishkemuncie that first night. We wanted to prove her wrong. We paddled so hard, and yes, even jogged on a few of the portages…. Turns out she was right after all, and we wound up in quite the predicament. Note to self: NEVER DOUBT DEB ON ANYTHING BWCA RELATED.

After paddling around in the dark (one lake away from Ogish) for a half hour looking for a campsite with nothing but a pencil-sized flashlight for light, we decided we had no choice but to go ask the men at the campsite a while back if there was any way we could throw up a tent at their site. After they told us they didn’t have any more tent space, they offered to take us to the other site on the lake, as they had gone earlier in the day to look at it. By 10 pm, our tents were pitched, stomachs were full (with disgusting freeze dried lasagna), and we were definitely ready for bed.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010:

ethan-the-barbarianSince we had made it so far that first night, we decided we should relax a bit more the next day. We got to Ogish within a half hour, and after a bit of a hike, made our way to an amazing waterfall. Katelyn and I explored and chatted while Ethan fished. And fish he caught. Every single cast, he pulled in a smalley. They were all pretty good size too………….for babies. Oops, did I just say that last part? Sorry Ethan. Either way, we had a great morning and decided to start making our way back towards Seagull. I’m not exactly sure how it happened, but at some point, we decided instead of enjoying a relaxing day, we were going to make it back home as fast as possible. Throughout the entire trip, Ethan had been talking about how he could carry all of the things we brought. Katelyn and I decided that to get him to stop being sassy about it, even if he was right, we should take him up on it. For one of the portages, we strapped every piece of equipment we had, less the paddles and fishing rods, on his back. He did it, like a champ. It would have been even better had we not run into other people on the portage……I swear Katelyn and I are not nearly as worthless as we looked in that moment.

liz-ethan-katelynBy the time we made it to Seagull Lake, we were all running low on energy. We fueled up on granola bars and Hershey’s chocolate, and took off on the last leg of our trip. It was pretty quiet until Katelyn splashed me with some water. I splashed back, and within a matter of seconds, the three of us were all splashing each other and laughing so hard we had tears in our eyes. Everything in the canoe was absolutely soaked, but the water was refreshing, both for our bodies and our spirits. We made it across Seagull in record time, and when we finally made it to the dock; we were all exhausted, extremely sunburned, and ready to eat at the Trail Center. I can’t believe all that we accomplished in such a short time, and how many memories we made in the process. I had a great time with great friends, I know Katelyn did, and Ethan told us when we got back that we “actually didn’t annoy him at all,” I think that meant he had a good trip too. I know if I had the chance I would be back there with those two in a heartbeat doing it all over again.

I am so thankful for the experiences I had and for the memories I share with the strangers, who became my friends, who became my family away from home. Thanks guys. 🙂

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