Summer: 5am - 10pm Fall: Please Call
1 (800) 848-5530
  • Register

Boundary Waters BLOG

Non-Quota Season Rules

Non-Quota Season Rules:
A permit is always required when a group goes into the BWCAW.
From October 1 through April 30th people use the non-quota, self-issue permit form whether they are 
staying overnight or just in for the day and whether they are using a motor on the motorized areas 
or are travelling without a motor.
The BWCAW rules and regulations are the same in both quota and non-quota seasons
with these exceptions:
•     Snowmobiles are only allowed in two places in the BWCAW : Crane Lake to Little Vermilion and 
the eastern portion of Saganaga.
•     During the ice-travel season, people may camp off of the designated sites. In fact, we prefer 
people camp offsite to avoid messes created when  the snow is deep and the latrines are hard to 
•     When snow is on the ground, fires may be built outside FS fire grates. However, care should 
be taken to locate fires where fire scars will not be left behind. Charred wood should be scattered 
out of sight. The use of a firepan is encouraged.
A few rules that stay the same but are sometimes for- gotten:
•     No more than 9 people should be gathered togeth- er anywhere in the BWCAW—even at the picto- 
•     Groups must have a permit.
•     No cans and bottles.
•     If you packed it in, pack it back out.
•     Cat holes (self made latrines) must be 150 feet from any water source,
       even if the lake or stream is frozen.
Continue reading
14 Hits

David Peterson's trip


John and Lynn,
I want to thank you for planning our trip.  Here are the results.

and trip report

View or comment on David Peterson's post »


Continue reading
166 Hits

Hurry 2015 trip

We did a day trip just for pike fishing. First pike in the canoe was 39". Caught several 36" including this one that Jim is holding, and numerous 30"+. Nothing under 30" and we put nearly 2 dozen  in the canoes. My son-in-laws were in awe (me too).


David Hurry

Continue reading
218 Hits

Collins/Marks 2016 trip

Dave: Thanks for forwarding the pictures of our trip to Lynn. I also would want to thank Lynn, John, and their helpful staff in making this a great trip. This is my 5th trip with VNO and they provide great equipment and knowledge to get the most out of a trip in the BWCA. Thank you so much and I look forward to many more trips in the future.



William K. Collins


Continue reading
196 Hits

After trip "Thank you"

Just now left Ely on our way home. Another great trip! We just want to say thank you for your friendly service! See you next year!


Jeff Goodwin

Continue reading
189 Hits

Quetico Fire ban

Quetico Fireban Details:

As of May 7th and until further notice, Quetico Provincial Park Interior and Dawson Trail Campground will be under a Restricted Fire Zone. No fires are permitted at any time.

Continue reading
1132 Hits

2014 Late October trip to Triangle Lake (North Kawishiwi entry)

Since we had some really nice weather at the end of October so I took a friend out for an overnight trip to Triangle Lake.

This area is where the entry #29 North Kawishiwi River is located - you have to start at Ojibway Lake, portage 5 rods to Triangle Lake, & paddle across to the portage.

My friend Katie and I decided that we would camp at Triangle Lake and walk the portage to the Kawishiwi River to check it out...Its 190 rods & not an easy portage, not horrible but It
would be more difficult to carry packs or canoes across.


Continue reading
1815 Hits

Jack on Nina Moose 2013


Continue reading
1896 Hits

Ely Rebrands Fall as "Getup"




               ELY, MINN. — SEPTEMBER 12, 2013 —It’s time for fall colors everywhere. But this year, America’s Coolest Small Town, Ely, Minn., is launching a campaign to encourage tourists to Getup — instead of Fall. 


               "Fall is such a negative word. And yet for hundreds of years, that's what we've been calling these post-summer months,” says Ely mayor, Ross Petersen. “Time for a change, we say, to do this season justice. With all there is to do this glorious time of year in Ely, well, we're just going to go ahead and rename it Getup."


               “We know we’re messing with a tradition that dates back hundreds of years. We know there are potential astronomical and meteorological implications with renaming a season,” adds Petersen. “But really, it’s bad karma. Temperatures fall. Leaves fall. Let’s turn it around.”


               So Getup to Ely and experience its stunning bright orange, reds and yellow foliage. Enjoy uncrowded lakes and easy permits in the BWCAW, as well as great hiking, biking and bird watching. The days are warm, the nights are cool and everything slows down a pace or two.


               “In years past, we’ve told the story of Ely’s "legendary" leaf painting family, the Zueniks.We have a lot of fun pulling tourists’ legs in Ely,” says Petersen. “But this is no joke. It’s truly time to Getup here before the snow flies — and experience the opposite of Fall. What a downer. Fall. Who thought of that, anyway? Getup already!”


               Get up to Ely, named “Coolest Small Town in America” by Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel; and to book a vacation that’s less than four hours from the Twin Cities, visit

Continue reading
2293 Hits

All boaters must do this!

Before traveling to Minnesota every boater must:

  • Clean all aquatic plants, zebra mussels and other prohibited invasive species from boats and trailers.
  • Drain water from boat, bait buckets and motor; drain live well and bilge by removing drain plugs.
  • Keep drain plugs out while transporting watercraft.

In Minnesota is it illegal to:

  • Transport watercraft without the drain plug removed.
  • Arrive at lake access with drain plug in place.
  • Transport aquatic plants, zebra mussels, or other prohibited species, whether dead or alive.
  • Launch watercraft with prohibited species attached.
  • Transport water from Minnesota lakes or rivers.
  • Release live bait into the water.

More information about Minnesota’s AIS laws is posted on the DNR website at Resorts, chambers of commerce, convention and visitors bureaus, and lake associations may also provide trip-planning information and links to AIS laws.

Continue reading
2339 Hits

Heather & kids first trip

b2ap3_thumbnail_298226_2492269623334_1583685596_n.jpgMy friend Heather wanted to go on her first canoe trip, so we choose a simple 3 day base camp on Isabella Lake for the end of August. The kids really had a good time & were really good campers!



Continue reading
2218 Hits

2013 BWCAW Permit Reservation Update

2013 BWCAW Permit Reservation Update:

Jim Sanders, Forest Supervisor for the Superior National Forest has decided to implement changes to the lottery and reservation system for the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW).

For 2013, the lottery will be retained for Fall Lake entry points D (Fall Lake & Beyond) and 24 (Fall Lake) and Moose Lake entry points F (Moose-Newfound-Sucker), G (Moose-Prairie-Basswood) and 25 (Moose Lake). People wanting day use motor, overnight motor, and overnight paddle permits for these entry points can continue to use the lottery to make their reservations as they have in the past. All other entry point reservations will be made on a first-come, first-served basis shortly after the lottery is run.

Lottery applications can be made starting from 12:01 am CT on December 19, 2012 to 11:59 pm CT on January 21, 2013. The lottery will run on January 22th. Reservations for all entry points can be made on a first-come, first-served basis starting January 30that 9:00 am central time. Reservations can be made at or by calling 1-877-444-6777.

Continue reading
2372 Hits

Amber, Becky, & Karyn's September trip - Crane to Moose River






Continue reading
2280 Hits

Amber & Becky's Hegman Lake October Day trip

Click below to view trip photos...

Continue reading
2457 Hits

Clark Boyer Sept 2012 trip

Click below to view trip photos...

Continue reading
2163 Hits

June 2011 Brian's Big Fish

Brian's Big Fish
Story :

Continue reading
2217 Hits

Mike Sawyer BWCA-2010

Thanks again. I thought as things slow down for you, you might have a chance to look at these. Some of them are of your shop.
Mike Sawyer and family

Continue reading
2204 Hits