Feedback requested

Questions about trails and campsites on the island.

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Feedback requested

Post by susanjely » Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:33 am

We are first timer's going to Isle Royale at the end of August with the below itinerary as a starting point. I would love feedback from more experienced hikers. We have hiked a lot in the Smokies and were looking for something different, when we became intrigued with Isle Royale.

August 28th - Arrive at Rock Harbor via boat. Hike the Rock Harbor Trail to the Daisy Farm campsite. (7.8 miles)
August 29th - Hike Rock Harbor trail to Lake Richie Trail to Indian Portage Trail to West Chickenbone Lake site. (10 miles)
August 30th - Hike Greenstone Ridge Trail to Hatchet Lake Trail to Minong Ridge Trail to Todd Harbor campsite. (11.5 miles)
August 31st - Hike Minong Ridge Trail to Indian Portage Trail to Greenstone Ridge Trail to East Chickenbone Lake site. (11.3 miles)
Sept. 1st - Hike Greenstone Ridge Trail to Lane Cove Trail to Lane Cove campsite. (10.9 miles)
Sept 2nd - Hike Lane Cove Trail to Mt. Franklin Trail to Tobin Harbor Trail back to Rock Harbor dock for afternoon departure. (6.9 miles)

Thoughts and comments appreciated.

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Re: Feedback requested

Post by JerryB » Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:35 am

I have no idea how far you like to hike. My own preference would be shorter days. A few other thoughts-it is always good to plan a layover day. It will give you some one flexibility in case of bad weather, blisters or just a desire to relax at a beautiful site. On your sites: E Chickenbone is generally considered the worst on the island so you may want to consider alternatives. Some good ones which may or may not work for you are McCargo, Chippewa and Mosley. Also, if you have time at Rock Harbor, the Stoll trail to Scoville Point is an awesome day hike. I recommend it. As to Lane Cove, I like that site but be aware of,reported beaver flooding on the trail, as reported elsewhere on this site. Read some trip reports for some ideas. Whatever you choose, enjoy.

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Re: Feedback requested

Post by Tom » Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:36 am

Welcome to the forum!

A couple quick thoughts:

August 28th - The requisite "take the Tobin Harbor trail and cut over at Suzy's Cave" advise applies; it just makes for an easier start.

August 31st - Any reason you're zig-zagging at McCargoe Cove? There is a trail direct from McCargoe to Chickenbone East, without the need to go down the Indian Portage Trail to the Greenstone. This part of the Greenstone isn't all that spectacular; it's a little bit of a lower area as it passes between lakes.
Personally, I would consider routing around Chickenbone East; and either make it a shorter day from Todd Harbor and stay at McCargoe, which is a spectacular camp. It's just that, well, every park needs to have it's "armpit campground" - the least desirable, and the NPS just decides to make it totally obvious which one that is. It's widely considered to be Chickenbone East. The hike from either McCargoe or Chickenbone West isn't too arduous, so other than another hour on trail, it might be worth it...

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Re: Feedback requested

Post by MIKE A » Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:39 pm

Just did Lane Cove on June 20 th.
Swamp boards were not flooded over but just barely!
Could change from day to day.

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