Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Questions about trails and campsites on the island.

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TomM1940
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Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by TomM1940 » Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:23 pm

Dear Isle Royale Forum Nation:

I've been stalking this forum and planning a trip for far too long. This month is it. Three members of The Big Adventure Discussion And Sports Society will travel to the island. Copper Harbor to RH on 6/15 then likely camp at 3M, DF, McC, Moske, 3M, then depart on 6/20. We may alter this to fish at Chickenbone or Ritchie. We are not in a hurry.

About 99% of my questions have been answered in numerous posting by members of the great Isle Royale Forum Nation. But here are just a few you might be able to help with.

How busy are these camp grounds this time of year? As of 6/8 the boat from CH on our date of departure shows 5 remaining spots. I envision the off spoken of rush to 3M to grab one of the 12 sites. Should I instead hunker down at RH or maybe try for Lane Cove? I suspect the farther you are from W or RH, the fewer the people.

Are there picnic tables for each camp site or a few per camp ground? I know they can get moved as stated on some older posts but I'm wondering what to expect? I know these don't exist at inland sites.

Are there fire rings per camp site or generally just one per camp ground? Here too I found some info on older postings. We're cooking with back pack stoves as required so the fire would be for fun.

Does trash have to be packed out with you on the boat or can it be dropped at RH or W?

We are camping at Ft Wilkins Friday, is there anywhere for breakfast in CH that serves before the boat departure?

My brother was last seen heading for the island some years ago and I've not heard from him. Have there been Sasquatch sightings on the island? Those could be my brother. He was always a hairy goomer.

Thanks for any info,


Bobcat1
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Re: Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by Bobcat1 » Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:43 pm

You are exactly right, the further you get from RH, the less full the campgrounds are. As for staying at RH, that might depend on if it is full of the people leaving on the next day’s ferry. There’s a distinct cycle if the Ranger or Voyager leaves in the morning. I have had to go as far as Daisy Farm to get a spot, and that was by doubling up with someone.....but that was in the peak season mid-August.
19 RH-ML-TI-RH by kayak
16 RH-DF-MB-TI-RH-3M-RH by kayak
09 RH-DF-MC-TH-HL-SD-WC
00 WC-IM-WC
96 WC-FL-SB-SD-HL-CE-3M-RH
94 RH-DF-MB-3M-RH
92 RH-DF-LR-CW-HL-SD-IM-WC


Bobcat1
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Re: Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by Bobcat1 » Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:43 pm

As for staying at RH, that might depend on if it is full of the people leaving on the next day’s ferry. There’s a distinct cycle if the Ranger or Voyager leaves in the morning. I have had to go as far as Daisy Farm to get a spot, and that was by doubling up with someone.....but that was in the peak season mid-August. The same week, on Thursday night RH was almost empty but Three-Mile was packed with people preparing to arrive early at RH to bag a spot for Friday night and take the Ranger out on Saturday.
Last edited by Bobcat1 on Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
19 RH-ML-TI-RH by kayak
16 RH-DF-MB-TI-RH-3M-RH by kayak
09 RH-DF-MC-TH-HL-SD-WC
00 WC-IM-WC
96 WC-FL-SB-SD-HL-CE-3M-RH
94 RH-DF-MB-3M-RH
92 RH-DF-LR-CW-HL-SD-IM-WC

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dcclark
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Re: Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by dcclark » Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:48 pm

Welcome to the forums (and, soon, to Isle Royale!).
TomM1940 wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:23 pm
How busy are these camp grounds this time of year? As of 6/8 the boat from CH on our date of departure shows 5 remaining spots. I envision the off spoken of rush to 3M to grab one of the 12 sites. Should I instead hunker down at RH or maybe try for Lane Cove? I suspect the farther you are from W or RH, the fewer the people.
Things are getting busier, but it's far from high season. There's always a rush to 3 mile, but you'll certainly be able to find a tent site -- they're meant to be shared. You may not get a shelter if that's important to you, but I wouldn't worry too much.

This partly depends on which ferries are coming or going. If the Voyageur or Queen are leaving Rock Harbor the next day, you may find things even busier at Three Mile, where folks pile up to hike in for their morning boat. If the Ranger is leaving the next day (at 8 am), then Rock Harbor will be busier than the other campgrounds.

If things aren't busy, staying in Rock Harbor (and taking in a ranger talk, doing a Sandy tour, etc.) is also a good option and lets you get on the trail nice and early the next morning.
TomM1940 wrote: Are there picnic tables for each camp site or a few per camp ground? I know they can get moved as stated on some older posts but I'm wondering what to expect? I know these don't exist at inland sites.
One per camp site at every spot you'll visit. Many inland sites do not have picnic tables at all (such as Richie and Chickenbone), but they often have handy logs to sit on.
TomM1940 wrote: Are there fire rings per camp site or generally just one per camp ground? Here too I found some info on older postings. We're cooking with back pack stoves as required so the fire would be for fun.
Most of the campgrounds you're looking at do not have any fire rings. McCargoe has one communal fire ring by the dock, and that's it. I don't think the rest have anything.
TomM1940 wrote: Does trash have to be packed out with you on the boat or can it be dropped at RH or W?
There are trash cans and dumpsters that you can leave trash in. I've sometimes been told by rangers that they prefer for you to pack your trash all the way back to the mainland -- after all, they have to haul it out if you don't. But the cans and dumpsters are still there, and nobody mentioned anything this year.
TomM1940 wrote: We are camping at Ft Wilkins Friday, is there anywhere for breakfast in CH that serves before the boat departure?
Most people either pack a breakfast, or get a pastry and coffee at the small shop that shares the Queen's dock (it's all in the family...). I doubt anything will be open early enough in Copper Harbor for you to both have a full breakfast and get to the dock by your 7:30 check-in time. For example, the Tamarack Inn doesn't open until 7 am. Others may know some secret little breakfast place, but Copper Harbor isn't that big -- I encourage you to bring your own oatmeal. Also, keep in mind that the lake might be rough...I wouldn't want to have a full breakfast in my stomach for 3 hours on the boat.

(Edit: pastry, like a cinnamon roll... I accidentally wrote "pasty" which is a yooper food too, but not correct!)
TomM1940 wrote: My brother was last seen heading for the island some years ago and I've not heard from him. Have there been Sasquatch sightings on the island? Those could be my brother. He was always a hairy goomer.
This him? He's doing some good LNT work...
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hooky
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Re: Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by hooky » Mon Jun 10, 2019 7:51 am

The Big Adventure Discussion And Sports Society?

I see what you did here. :mrgreen:


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TomM1940
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Re: Finally getting to the Island, a few questions on sites

Post by TomM1940 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 7:52 pm

Thanks much for all the good info. Yes, Big Adventure Discussion And Sports Society. It started some years ago. A dad I had met years ago when our sons went through scouting approached me. We'd done many scout trips with the boys. Some paddling on the Current River in MO, Philmont Scout Ranch, and many other trips closer to home. He said it was time for a dads trip. That led to a rim to rim 4 day hike through the Grand Canyon. We did not stop there. A journey to see the total eclipse of the sun in the Shawnee Forest, and last fall paddling the Green River through Canyon lands NP. Now the Island. A big adventure need not be a major excursion. Big is the eye of the beholder. A trip with your 4 year old to Home Depot and climbing on each lawn tractor is a pretty big adventure. There's always something to talk about, hence discussion, and try to keep active through sports which can be skiing the Burkie or a ride on your bike for ice cream. Whatever it takes, as Tom Petty wrote;
"I need a big weekend.
Kick up the dust.
Yeah a big weekend.
If you don't run, you rust."

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