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Paddle & Backpack: Lake One to the Powwow

Contact Susan Pollock, crew leader, before registering for this trip. There is at least one space available. I will have a waitlist and welcome inquiries. Phone 612 644-4562 or email or message me through this Meetup site. Thank you.

Adventure awaits volunteers on this canoe and hike clearing trip to the historic Powwow Trail north of Isabella, Minnesota. This crew will paddle and portage Lakes One, Two and Three to access the beautiful rugged west side of the Powwow Trail.

Thursday afternoon, September 19, we will carpool from the Twin Cities area to Ely, MN. That evening we will stay at a Kawishiwi Lodge bunkhouse, steps away from the sandy shore of BWCAW Lake One. Friday morning up for breakfast and coffee and our paddle through Lakes One, Two and Three. We will stash our canoes at Lake Three, hoist our packs and hike south on the Powwow Trail.

Our Friday-Saturday-Sunday campsite will depend on progress of the BWAC Memorial Day clearing crew along this route three weeks prior to this trip. The site will have a fire grate but no latrine. Saturday and Sunday we will clear new growth and downed trees to liberate the original Powwow Trail. Monday will see us packing out and returning to the Twin Cities, tired but rewarded by the knowledge of leaving a safe trail and experiencing the camaraderie of new friends.


This is a canoeing and backpacking trip in the wilderness. Each participant will carry their own pack, shelter, sleep system, food, personal gear and a clearing tool. BWAC may have gear to share or borrow and has suggestions for menu and food packing. Participants should be in good physical shape and have a "can-do" attitude for unknown trail and weather conditions.

We will have a required local hike during August-September to meet each other and conduct a gear check for major gear components: footwear, pack, rain gear, layers, sleep system, tent; and to hash out trip logistics. Trail clearing experience is not required or expected. BWAC provides all tools and safety training.


You will make new friends, share your skills and learn new skills from your crew, and have an unforgettable experience helping restore a fire-damaged legacy trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness for hikers today and into the future.


All participants must sign the BWAC liability release and BWAC medical health form before trip departure.

The $25 registration fee includes a Mckenzie map of the Powwow Trail and offsets some administrative and tool costs for BWAC. Additional costs will be $15.00 bunkhouse, your trip food, and $15-$20 shared gas for those not driving. Our trail partner, the U.S. Forest Service, provides canoes and the wilderness permit for BWAC volunteer crews.

THANK YOU FOR CHOOSING TO VOLUNTEER WITH THE BOUNDARY WATERS ADVISORY COMMITTEE. Your time and energy will leave a legacy for hikers now and in the future.