We had a great trip really enjoyed the drive to Grand Portage we stayed at the Casino there.
We went in at McCargo Bay off the Voyager 2 ferry out of Grand Portage. There were 5 of us onboard 3 young men who were backpacking from McCargo Bay to Windigo. They seemed a little disorganized but they had great enthusiasm. I would guess they may have had very few trips of a life times under their belts. They kind of reminded me on my first canoe trip, or even my pup’s first hunting trip. When we got to McCargo bay it was just too hot to move all our equipment to Chickenbone, so we opted to stay the 1st night in McCargo. My wife discovered the sleeping shelters and fell in love with them. The three young travelers seemed to be lost after a ½ hour one of them swallowed his pride and ask how to find his trail out of the camp site. I smiled and helped them as someone did do for me when we were their age. We did meet another couple who were hiking the Island also they were staying at McCargo Bay. They too did allot of canoeing and had some of question on canoeing the Island. I think they were a little envious of us canoeing the Island. They were from Florida and were up north to escape the heat. He asked how far north do you have to go to get cool. I just smiled and told him stick around and it will.
It was so hot the 1st 2 days in the 90 and high humidity. 1st day we hiked up to Minong Mine about a mile away and just tried to stay cool.
I portage our Canoe in the late afternoon it is a 1.2 mile portage to Lake Chickenbone not very hard with walkways over the wet areas. We camped on the west side of Chicken Bone Lk. the next day. We fished and did well we caught some walleyes, and allot of pike. It was hot so we went back to camp and hiked up to Lake Livermore on the hiking trail. We decided that it was not the way to portage. We decided to use the real portage in the middle of Chicken Bone into Livermore Lk. which is by far the best way. I fished Chickenbone towards evening caught some fish. The next morning we were getting up early to beat the heat and head up to Livermore just before we hit the Livermore Lake we got rained on and it just did not stop. I had a weather radio along they predicted 20 % light rain. It rained all morning. We did not fish Livermore would have loved to but it was not nice out. We hit the next portage and off to LeSage Lake. The portage was in real nice shape long but easy walking. LeSage is nice lake twice the size of Livermore. Still raining so we headed to Lake Richie the portage is a little hard to find it on the north side of a weed bed. We did see our first group of canoeist on the portage. The trail was really getting wet ankle deep by all the rain but not bad just a little long. We hurried along to Lake Richie canoe campsite before the wind picked up too bad. We made camp and watched the white caps. Listening to the weather radio it sounded like it could get ugly. The low clouds were moving east and the upper clouds moving west never a good sign. Lucky for us the bad weather went south of us. I did not fish Richie either. We wanted to keep moving to the next site the next morning. The humidity level was so high we did not dry out for 2 days. Plus along with the rain the slugs were all around our camping site into everything.
My mind thought of those young men who need some assistance and how their trip was going. I would smile and laugh out loud knowing they were doing ok and probably having a great time.
The portages between Richie and Intermediate Lake were a little tougher but not bad. Intermediate had two canoes on the campground . The lake is not too big we hit the portage between Intermediate and Siskiwit Lake it was ok also. Lake Siskiwit is the biggest Lake and the clearest lake on the island. At 10 + feet and you can see your jig. We were going to stay on Wood Lake. We looked at it and it is one of most used but prettiest campsites of the ones we have seen on the Island. I could tell my wife wanted to stay in a shelter at Malone bay after all the rain we had the day before, and I was with her on that one also. We did see the last canoe group of the trip coming out of Wood Lake.
Lake Siskiwit is big, clear, deep (160') and pretty. My guess it is a hard lake to fish during the day better night lake. I have never had much luck with clear lakes. I would love figure that lake out.
We made it to Malone Bay campsite and found it almost to ourselves, except for some researchers. Our little shelter had a very nice view of the bay. At night you could see the light of the Lighthouse which made my wife very happy. With the light breeze off Lake Superior it was very comfortable.
We fished on and off Siskiwit for the rest of the 2 days never had hit. I did have a follow by a nice lake trout which surfaced but did not hit my lure one evening. It must have missed my lure swam under the canoe hit than surfaced and came back towards me. This made my evening. We hiked around the lake and found a nice cliff overlooking Lake Siskiwit. We hiked until we got to a bridge and were driven back by some ground wasps. Mean little buggers we had to walk through them twice. It was nice to go for a swim after the hike the cool water felt great.
We left Malone campsite with a feeling of pride and completeness, as we headed to be picked up by the Voyager 2 for our return to Windigo for check out of the park. With quick sandwich and a much rewarding ICE COLD POP (heaven) from the Windigo store along with it my wife found a nice tee shirt.
While on board we ran into the young hikers from earlier. They seem to have changed with a
Walk of pride and smiles on their faces I shook their hands and congratulated them. They had a good trip but next time they are bringing a canoe they said. They tried canoeing while there and wanted to do canoe route trip next time.
We arrived at Grand Portage around 3 pm and decided to see the old fort and museum and spend the night at the Casino again. It was rib night yea and cold beer. Service was slow but the ribs were great.
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Thank you on the paddle I carved them out of Cottonwood. My wife decorated hers, she has lots of positive commits about it. Seems like I am always making a different paddle for myself. They are great tripping paddles but not much for shallow water. I was at Grand Portage there was a few paddle in that style there.
Little wide for a voyager paddle but you can paddle them all day with them. Thanks for all your posts pretty much planed my trip off your advice. I will be back I really want to investigate Siskiwit any advice on fishing it I would be interested.