Figure 8 hike

Questions about trails and campsites on the island.

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thesneakymonkey
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Figure 8 hike

Post by thesneakymonkey » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:23 am

Ok so with snow on the ground and winter in full swing, I am feeling the call of the island again . I was thinking about when we go again which trails we would like to hit. I am thinking about doing both the Huginnin cove and Feldtmann loops (starting and ending in Windigo). We haven't hiked either of these loops yet, but we have hiked the island twice (see videos in my signature below). If you were to do this hike, which direction would you go? Would you start with Huginnin or Feldtmann? Clockwise or counterclockwise? I am thinking something like 5 nights (1 ea at Hug cove, Island Mine, siskiwit, feldtmann lake, and windigo), but I could be convinced for longer stays. What are your thoughts?

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Ingo
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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by Ingo » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:05 pm

I did the Feldtmann clockwise and that worked for me--steep climbs take it out of me and they're more gradual in that direction, albeit the same elevation up and down. But if you're going from the Feldtmann Loop to Huginnin (which I'd suggest), a day from Island Mine to HC would be easier/shorter than from Feldtmann Lake to HC. So unless you're old, out-of-shape, and hate climbing like me :? , I'd probably suggest:
Feldtmann Lake -> Siskiwit Bay -> Island Mine -> Huginnin Cove
which also avoids passing through the civilization of Windigo in the middle of the trip. Putting HC at the end gives you more options depending on the weather and how the trip's gone--cutting it if you need to, or an easier hike to make the boat the last day.
79: worked RH, 01: BI-DB-RH, 02: MC-LR-WL-CH, 05: MI-CI-MB-DF-RH-TM-RH, 09: MC-BI-DN-RH, 11: WC-HC-WC, 12: MC-CB-HL-TH, 14: BI-ML-CI-CH-MB, 16: RH-CI-TI-RH, 17: WI-IM-SB-FL-WC, 18: MC-PC-BI-DB-RH-DF

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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by thesneakymonkey » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:41 pm

Ingo wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:05 pm
I did the Feldtmann clockwise and that worked for me--steep climbs take it out of me and they're more gradual in that direction, albeit the same elevation up and down. But if you're going from the Feldtmann Loop to Huginnin (which I'd suggest), a day from Island Mine to HC would be easier/shorter than from Feldtmann Lake to HC. So unless you're old, out-of-shape, and hate climbing like me :? , I'd probably suggest:
Feldtmann Lake -> Siskiwit Bay -> Island Mine -> Huginnin Cove
which also avoids passing through the civilization of Windigo in the middle of the trip. Putting HC at the end gives you more options depending on the weather and how the trip's gone--cutting it if you need to, or an easier hike to make the boat the last day.
Great answer. Exactly the reasoning I was looking for. thank you!!


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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by chippy » Sun Dec 09, 2018 3:18 pm

Did the trip you are describing last June with my husband. We did it in 3 nights: started at Windigo, first night at Siskiwit Bay via the Greenstone, 2nd night at Feltdmann Lake, 3rd night at Huginnin, then back to Windigo in the morning to catch our boat back to MN around noon.

I understand the milage reasonings for stopping at Island Mine, but that campground just seems so disappointing compared to all the awesome ones on the lakes! I would push past Island Mine if it were me, but obviously do what works best for you.

I actually enjoyed passing back through Windigo before heading up to Huginnin- stopped for a break, and a few beers and snacks (that we wouldn't have to carry) before the final few miles up to Huginnin.

Overall I thought this figure 8 trip was a great sampler of many different landscapes that Isle Royale has to offer- the green tunnel of the Greenstone, beach walking along Siskiwit bay, swamp walking, ridge walking, Lake Superior rocky shore walking...it's got it all.

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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by thesneakymonkey » Sun Dec 09, 2018 5:14 pm

I have thought the same thing about Island Mine but I am reserving judgement until I see it in person. We could always just pass through if needed. I am not worried about the mileage but I have learned from past trips we like to take our time and smell the roses on the island. We are also trying to see all the campgrounds on the island at some point. Island Mine may offer a different perspective on the island that I haven't seen yet.

It is good to hear a different opinion about making a stop in windigo half way through. I think I am leaning more towards not stopping in "town" to preserve that wilderness solitude feeling that I like, but a few beers and a pizza might convince me otherwise. :wink:


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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by ARRC » Sun Dec 09, 2018 9:53 pm

I've done both loops and like Ingo's suggestion. Strangely I found the climb from the bay up to Island Mine more difficult than anything on the Minong.

I did Loop in May, it was an awesome experience. If you can, I highly recommend May. The lack of green up, allows for spectacular views.

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Re: Figure 8 hike

Post by philranger » Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:27 pm

Relatively speaking, Island Mine isn’t that bad. When we did the Feldtmann loop, we did it counter clockwise and spent the first night at Island Mine. It reminds me of any State Park campsite. The biggest difference between it and any other campsite is it’s lack of a water vista. After hiking up the Greenstone for 7 miles, Island Mine wasn’t so bad for one night.
Isle Royale Trips: 2005-RH to Windigo via Greenstone. 2006-McCargoe Cove to Chippewa Harbor. 2007-RH to Daisy Farm and back. 2008-Feltmann loop. 2009-McCargoe Cove to Chippewa Harbor. 2013-Minong Ridge. 2014-Windigo + Huginnin Cove. 2015-Lookout Louise to LC to DF to MB. 2018-McCargoe to Todd to HL to Malone Bay.

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