7/26/14 -Our own Cindy Lou & Co. took a four-day trip ending last weekend. The group came back smiling with great tales of their trip. Three main themes included talk of the portages being hard in an awesome way, gorgeous scenery, and minimal traffic. For two days they saw only one other person! The group put in on Round Lake and cruised to Gillis, Little Sag, Crooked, and Tuscorora lakes and back to their start at Round.
The area Cindy, Jeanne, Sue & Carol paddled through on this trip was impacted in the springtime of 2007 by the Ham Lake fire. At that time, it was the most extensive wildfire in Minnesota in over 90 years, burning for 15 days and covering over 76,000 acres of wilderness. As the permit video says, "Remember the wilderness is always changing. Wind and fire are a natural part of this process." It's beautiful and inspiring to see the now vibrantly green area impacted by the Ham Lake fire thriving seven years later. This certainly is a destination to keep in mind when planning your next trip. Entry points in the area include Cross River (#50), Missing Link Lake (#51), and Brant Lake(#52). You can also reach this area through routes from Sawbill Lake including the Little Saganaga East and West Loops. Happy trip planning! -Carla
Smiling campers clockwise from Left to Right:
Jeanne Rysdahl, Cindy Lou Hansen, Sue Davis, Carol Perkins
Sunset on Cooked Lake
7/26/14 - Here is this week's edition of the Cook County West End News from WTIP-FM, North Shore Community Radio.
7/22/14 - There was a large storm that came through the Northland last night, and there are some rescue operations occurring farther west in the Boundary Waters. However, here at Sawbill and in the lakes surrounding us there have been no reports of injuries and no rescue operations are currently occurring.
We also got some updates about conditions in the Sawbill area from the Tofte Ranger District wilderness crews today. Here's what they have to say:
The beaver dam on the Ada Lake to Skoop portage has blown out and now visitors have to skirt the drainage. The Lujenida portage also has some associated beaver activity that has flooded out a portion on the south end of the portage. There was a system of boardwalks that are now floating around. People have been generally skirting the water and making it through. After the wind storm last night there may be trees down across the portages.
Blueberries are not even close to being ripe yet. The water is still very cold on the larger lakes like Brule and Cherokee, so please remember to wear life jackets! - Peter
7/21/14 - The summer is in full swing, with fewer bugs, plenty of sunshine, warm water, clear starry nights, and good fishing. Unfortunately, we have already had to say goodbye to our wonderful crew member Laura Hoppe, who left yesterday to begin a semester studying abroad in Mexico. - Peter
Best of luck in Mexico, Laura! We miss you already.
Steve Hagen was nice enough to send this picture of himself from Patagonia, Chile today. - Bill
7/17/14 - Our good friend, wood and canvas canoe builder extraordinaire Alex Comb, is organizing a wooden canoe gathering here at Sawbill this September.
7/17/14 - Our good friend, wood and canvas canoe builder extraordinaire Alex Comb, is organizing a wooden canoe gathering here at Sawbill this September. Information from Alex:
Sawbill Landing Wooden Canoe Gathering
September 5-7, 2014
We will gather Friday at the National Forest Campground at Sawbill Landing, which is at the end of the Sawbill Trail on the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Car camping sites are available at the campground (half of the sites can be reserved online at: www.recreation.gov, while the other half are on a first come basis). Heavily wooded with mature white Pines it is a beautiful setting. The northern two thirds of Sawbill Lake is in the BWCA and there are short portages into Alton, Kelso and Smoke Lakes. Day permits are available by simply filling out a registration form.
We will take some excursions in the BWCA on Saturday, while Sunday will be left for paddling around the landing. There may be a bit of boat swapping available for people to try each other's boats. Stewart River Boatworks will also have some models available for folks to try.
Everyone with interest in wooden canoes is welcome to join in. Bring a wooden canoe if you have one or just bring what you have.
The kids are back at school, the bugs have gone to bed. It is a wonderful place to enjoy the early autumn.