A few questions from a first timer

Questions on general information and things that do not fit into any other categories.

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frig0018
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A few questions from a first timer

Post by frig0018 »

Hello!

I've been happy to find this forum and have ordered the guidebook for my upcoming trip this August! My plan is 4 days/3 nights with an itinerary of arrive via Grand Portage and camp Washington Creek (night 1), Hike to Huginnins (night 2), Hike back to Washington Creek (night 3), then depart for home. I will be travelling alone with my 4 year old daughter and had a few miscellaneous questions:

We are hoping to rent a canoe or tandem kayak (experienced paddler, did BWCA with her when she was 2) and paddle around the harbor outside Windigo. Would it be fun to explore/picnic on Beaver Island? We're happy just being on the water too. Do I need to bring her a life jacket? I'm sure there are adult ones there.

Is the creek near Washington Creek good for playing in? Are there places to access the big lake near Washington Creek and/or Huginnins for wading?

For the hike to Huginnins, do you recommend east to west or west to east? Or just east or just west? I have the option of carrying her in a front baby carrier if things get too tricky/sketchy/her 4 year old behavior comes out...

If we're lucky enough to get a shelter at Washington Creek, do people typically set up their tents inside the shelter or do you just use your pads/quilts?

Does anyone have a recommendation for somewhere we can rent an InReach or are we better off just buying one? (We're out of cell service camping together several times a year at present, though I'm guessing this might increase in the future as she gets more active).

Any other advice?? Thanks! - Lacey
instagram: lacey.frigaard

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Ingo
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Re: A few questions from a first timer

Post by Ingo »

Welcome to the forums. Sounds like a great trip and great to see you getting out with your daughter while she's young.
Personally I always brought our own lifejackets for our kids when they were small--never trusted what someone else may have, even if they had something. I don't think I ever added them to a 10 mile backpacking trip, but I would. But I think the store in Windigo offers storage for a fee, or you may find someone or a place to stow it for your night to Huginnin--there's always friendly/helpful folks around.

I haven't made it out to Beaver Island, but I think that would be a great little day trip. Washington Creek is pretty swampy and the bank is steep in front of the shelters. But it's great for watching wildlife--ducks, geese, swans, moose. Huginnin Cove, however, has a sloping gravel beach where you can wade in the lake, if you can deal with the temp. Water shoes (e.g. Crocs) would be recommend because it is rocky.

I did the loop clockwise but didn't see any compelling reason to do it one direction or the other. But if the weather's changing I'd probably do the lakeside stretch when it's the best--it's a nice scenic stretch. But also where you'll want to watch the young'n more closely, as it's a bit of a precipitous drop in spots.

I've never set up my tent in a shelter, but many do for some added warmth. In Aug, and because you don't have winds off the lake blowing in at W.C., I doubt you'll want to, but you can make the call there.

If you find a convenient place to rent an inReach or Spot, please let us know--I sure others would be interested.

Have a great trip!
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Re: A few questions from a first timer

Post by torpified »

just to make explicit what you've already divined from the map: the lakeside stretch of the Huginnin (which is extremely awesome for jaded elderly people like me, and so probably extraordinary for the short and imaginative) comes AFTER the Huginnin camp if you're going clockwise. So you'd miss it if you did an out-and-back starting clockwise. Also: I liked the nature trail behind the Windigo store pretty well. I didn't actually see many striking mammals, but it was full of promise. Finally: Kudos for cultivating a now and future adventurer!

frig0018
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Re: A few questions from a first timer

Post by frig0018 »

Thanks for the advice and encouragement! Do you think I’d be able to stash the life jacket at the ranger station while we’re at hugginins? Looking to cut weight wherever possible - carrying for two won’t be easy!
instagram: lacey.frigaard

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IncaRoads
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Re: A few questions from a first timer

Post by IncaRoads »

The concession operation at Rock Harbor and Windigo do offer a service to store gear for a fee. The box of gear cannot contain stove fuel or food.

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