BWCAW 2007 – Day 3

Synopsis: Spoon Lake to Kekekabic Lake. 1.50 miles paddling plus 2 portages totaling 110 rods.


Today’s map.

Base map courtesy USGS; overlay by Reid Priedhorsky.
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As it turns out, the wind roars through the trees all night and it rains off and on. In the morning, it is windy, wet, and cold, though the rain has mostly stopped. There’s not much initiative to get up and moving.


Spoon Lake.

Photo by Jan Studebaker.
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Our canoe landing. Note how soggy and cold everything looks.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Those of us who are up hold a powwow — the choices are to wait in camp and hope for an improvement, or to go on, reasoning that it’s nicer to be moving in bad weather than simply waiting. We choose to go on to Kekekabic Lake (it’s only two portages) and rouse the rest. There’s a lot of grumbling.

It’s a cold breakfast and packing.


Andy and me changing out of warm, dry boots and into wet, icy sandals.

Photo by Bill Priedhorsky.
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The lake is pretty choppy, but once we’re out and moving it is not too bad. The landing at the portage is a bit exciting due to the offshore wind and rocks.

(Given conditions over the next few days, however, this seems not bad at all in restrospect.)

We cross Pickle Lake, and 86 rods after that we’re on Kekekabic Lake. The original plan was to cross and take a far-shore camp recommended by my sister, but it’s rather windy and Kek (a big one) is quite choppy, with whitecaps, etc., off in the distance.

We opt to head east along the (lee) shore and stop at a campsite about half a mile along. This we do, but the camp (quite a nice one as far as we can tell) is occupied, so we continue along a few hundred more yards to the next one. This one is also nice, and it’s a bit more sheltered.

There’s some debate about whether to lunch here and then move on to someplace more sheltered, perhaps just across the bay, but it’s freezing cold, nobody has much drive, and the view is quite good. So, this’ll be our home for the next two nights.

We have a cold lunch and settle in for a nice lazy afternoon. There will be plenty of time to collect firewood, put up bear ropes, and relax.


Kekekabic Lake from our campsite.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Marilyn and Rick in our campsite.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Canoe parking.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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Marilyn enjoying the view.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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This patch of blue sky (one of just a handful) gave us our only sunlight for the day. It lasted about thirty seconds.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Rearranging the campfire logs for greater comfort.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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Dick relaxing.

I read this book (Three Cups of Tea) some months later, and it’s really quite extraordinary. I highly recommend it.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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Cooking one of many rounds of hot drinks.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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Campfires are really nice on such cold days. Dinner is cooking at my left. I believe this was famous enchilada night.

Photo by Jan Studebaker.
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More misbehavior.

Photo by Rick Kelley.
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Andy is too cool for the sunset.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Please continue reading on Day 4.

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