Boundary Waters – day two

We woke to stormy skies. We made breakfast and coffee and talked about our plans for the day: how far we would try to get for the day and what our ideal campsite would be if we could get there before anyone else. The water looked grey and choppy. The temperature was cool but at least with the stronger winds the bugs were not as bad. All of a sudden it felt as if I had pinched a nerve in my neck. It tighten up on the right side and I wasn’t able to move my neck without a certain amount of pain. Moving my arm also caused pain in my neck and right shoulder. This was not good given what lie ahead of me for the day. I took 2 Advil from the first aid kit and hoped for it to kick in soon.

And soon enough the rain and winds picked up and made us run for the tent after securing our gear. It was around 8am and we were stuck in the tent waiting out the storm. We could see the other campsite across the lake was hunkering down as well. While laying in the tent, both of us a little grumpy, hubby says “day two…and the morale is low.” It made us laugh so hard and lightened up the situation. By 9am we were able to get out on the still choppy water and head north to the far end of Nina Moose lake.

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The first portage of the day and we had decided that things would go better for us if we both just made 2 trips instead of trying to get everything in one trip. Portages are measured in “rods” and a rod is basically 16 feet long, the length of a typical canoe. The first portage was 70 rods.

Dropping back into the water and more paddling up Moose River.

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We saw a deer near the edge of the water.

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The next portage was 96 rods. We were starting to get this portaging thing down. It was muddy and buggy but we just needed to put our heads down and carry all of our crap to the next waters edge. Done.

One more stretch of river before we would hit Lake Agnes. I kept looking for moose, as I always do, but didn’t see any. Spoiler alert: I didn’t see any moose the whole trip. I guess the moose population is declining in that area and they’re down 40%. There’s a study currently going on to see why the numbers are dropping.

Lake Agnes was pretty big. The skies were still stormy and the water a little choppy but not as bad as in the morning.

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At the far end of Lake Agnes we found the portage spot and once again got ready to dance with the mud and mosquitoes. This was a 115 rod portage but it would also be the last portage of the day.

The next body of water was Boulder Bay. This was probably one of my favorite areas. The clouds were starting to break and the sun was peeking out. It was just peaceful and we didn’t see anyone else for this whole stretch.

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We came around the bend and the lake just opened up wide! It was huge! Water everywhere with tiny islands all over. Some were Canadian and some were US owned. We didn’t need a passport to explore but we did need to camp on the US side of things. The wind was strong and we were going against it. The winds also made for a lot of chop on the water. We put our heads down and went to work. This was thrilling and one of the most exciting parts of the trip for me. I wasn’t scared but I had a good respect for the water, how quickly conditions can change, and how easily a small boat can capsize. And with this knowledge and both of us working hard it became exhilarating. I also love doing new things where I’m a little hesitant at first but then prove to myself that I can overcome it. I loved it!

After about 30 minutes of pushing though the rough water we could see the island that we were aiming for. The campsite that we wanted was open! Things were definitely getting better. We pulled the canoe up onto the land and surveyed the site. It was great: on our own island, jutting out so we had water on 3 sides of us, breezy to keep the bugs away, sunny but with trees for shade, an awesome view of Canadian islands, a fire pit with scraps of wood laying around and a flat area for the tent. It also had a perfect tree to hang our food from bears and critters. Hubby was super excited about this. It couldn’t get much better!

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Hubby did some fishing but didn’t catch anything. We didn’t really need to catch anything with views like this!

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As the sun started to lower we got some gorgeous lights reflecting off the clouds and water.

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We got a fire going and sat back with some lovely boxed wine (minus the box of course). It was a good vintage. ha ha.

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As we sat soaking in the beauty around us we noticed a double rainbow. A great end to a great day!

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We nicknamed this campsite: Perfect Campsite!

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~ by willtriforbeer on August 1, 2014.

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