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Northern Tier Route - Moose Lake to where

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Our scouts got shut out by Philmont (2018 also) so they decided to go to Northern Tier but asked to do this through an outfitter to save some money and to be more flexible with the date. I have been to the BW 6 times so I have no issues with idea but I cant seem to find examples of the treks Northern Tier will take you on. By providing examples it will be easier for the crew to make thier own plan. I can help them but am trying to stay back a bit, make them do research and voice their opinion.


So my question is from Moose lake where did you go and what was the route.

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Might not get many replies here in the sub category of equipment.

When we did our trip we went, Moose, Sucker, Birch, Knife, then looped back through Kekekabic, Strup, Wisini(sp), Gerund, Fraser, Thomas,Hatchet, Ima, Jordan, Ashigan, Ensign, Sucker, Moose

Ima lake was a highlight, there is an island with two camp sites, the eastern facing camp has a fantastic sunset vantage. Plus a great spot for star gazing.  

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There are plenty of great books and online resources available. Though, mostly oriented towards adults. I would recommend Robert Beymer's book "Boundary Waters Canoe Area: Western Region". The introduction in the book provides good guidance on trip planning. The chapters explain common routes along with background and history. Depending on your own route, you'll need to reference different chapters covering the lake chain you take. It won't provide information on current portage conditions or "good" campsites.

If you already have maps, make sure to bring one new set to reflect campsites that have since closed. You can buy maps from your outfitter, or directly from W.A. Fisher online (shipping folded maps via UPS letter is about $8.50 and arrives quickly). For trip planning you may want to get an overview map (E-15: Minnesota-Canadian Wilderness).

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^ Disappointment Lake: our best campsite 3 years ago. ^


This is by far the best link for information on the BWCA:


Be sure to haunt the forums and trip reports for current info.

I'd guess that your biggest challenge is going to be finding campsites large enough to accommodate your group. Or multiple campsites close enough to together.  Remember to have backup sites in mind, in case your destination is occupied.

If you use Snowbank Lake as your entry point, you could swing by the BSA facility on Moose Lake to get some bling.


We entered Snowbank, went through Parent to Disappointment and Ashub; and back.

Site 1381 was our best.  (Photo above.)




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I wouldnt worry about what NTier sets up for trips - focus on the neat things to see then build a route that takes in several of them.  Prairie Portage is neat and they can get a picture at the Canada sign.  Robbins Island is neat - there is "bacon rock" and some remnants of Dorothy Molter's lodge (stop at the museum before hand to learn about Dorothy).  There are some pictographs between Jordan and Ima.  Cattyman Falls is nice.  You'd have to look it up - I remember there are some old pilings and a sunken steam ship in the south part of Basswood - near the end of 4-mile portage as I recall.

If you want to get away from the Moose Lk area - we went in at Mudro last year then up to Fourtown and Gun lake areas.  Very nice and fewer people.

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