Countdown to the BWCA ~ Part 4

Well February just went SCREAMING by! Maybe because there were only 28 days in the month – but really – screaming by!

In the past month we did a lot of research on bwca.com (my favorite website) and purchased a LOT of BIG items.

1.) We bought a canoe! After firmly deciding that we were not going to haul the beast of a fiberglass canoe that our friends had borrowed us, we were thinking about renting a Kevlar canoe from the boundary waters. We poured hours upon hours into which brand and model canoe we wanted and landed on the one below.  When doing the math – after just two or so trips we would have an entire canoe paid for – so we ended up purchasing a 2013 Wenonah Boundary Waters Canoe from Dan Waters up at Canadian Waters Inc. in Ely. It was a used outfitting boat that’s in great condition. He is storing it up at his place until we come.

Boundary Waters-Menu

2.) After a co-worker borrowed me his #4 and #3 Duluth Packs I determined that I would rather have a portage pack, so I returned my awesome purple Crestrail 65L for an even more awesome CCS Pioneer Hybrid pack (in Red). This sucker takes the practicality of a portage bag and marries it with the convenience and comfort of a framed hiking pack and BAM! You have a CCS Hybrid bag. The best part is that it’s not only made in the USA, its made right down the road from me!

I had the luxury of visiting CCS headquarters and meeting owners Dan & Karen who are avid paddlers, and know a thing or two about the BWCA! While I was there I got loads of free advice, and picked up a Pathfiner Thwart Bag as well to hold our map, bug spray, sun screen and anything else we want to keep handy in the canoe.

hybrid600

thwartpathfinder-md

What else happened? We reserved our bunkroom with Canadian Waters, Inc. as well, and it seems like a very very good deal. We plan to head up to the bwca on a Friday and put in on a Saturday – instead of waking up around 3am to drive up to Ely and get in [the entry point] early enough to avoid canoe traffic at the major portages.

It is $20 per night for a room (per person) of private bunk beds, and Sadie can stay with us too – and breakfast is included at Britton’s Cafe across the street. If you ask me – thats one heck of a deal!

In this next month we will be purchasing sleeping bags for both Miss K’s  and myself and three Exped or Thermarests mats to get us up off the freshly thawed ground and a few more clothing items as needed.

Jason did discover there is quite a few items of interest at Fleet Farm at a pretty good discount. Dry bags which are in the same fashion as our REI purchased ones, and these super awesome flexible ties. He also purchased a handful of bungee cords and a handful wool sox as well.

One other website that I found is this awesome one: Paddle Planner. You can put in your entry point to your desired daily location and it will tell you (in miles) how far you have to travel and the estimated time it will take you to get there. They also have campsites listed with photos and reviews! I already have my eye on several campsites I would like to make my home for a few days!

This next month we should have everything fairly buttoned up in terms of the majority of our supplies. Here’s to more “hunting and gathering”.

~ Till next time.

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