Sunday, December 14, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Since the Holiday Season brings lots of friends and families together to plan vacations for next year, I thought it timely to provide some permit and opening dates for you all.
December 1, 2008 Boundary Waters Permit Lottery Begins
February 1, 2009 Boundary Waters Permit Phone Lines Open
May 9, 2009 Minnesota Fishing Opener
May 16, 2009 Quetico Fishing Opener
In addition, for those paddling the Quetico this summer, we can reserve your Quetico Permit 5 months in advance of your trip departure date.
In the meantime, if you find yourself dreaming of open water, think about joining the 2009 Seagull Bay Ice Out Contest on our discussion board at
http://forums.seagulloutfitters.com/tool/post/soseagull/vpost?id=3127781 . Winner takes home a $100 gift certificate to be applied towards a canoe trip or cabin this summer. Or, join the monthly photo contest at http://forums.seagulloutfitters.com/tool/post/soseagull/vpost?id=3082586 . Stay in touch with Seagull friends and customers that are planning for 2009!
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
I thought you might all enjoy seeing what the fall colors are around the shower building at Seagull. We are closed for the season. I was slowly driving the trail today and enjoying the colors. During the course of the season, I rarely take the time to stop and "smell the roses." It was a relaxing drive today.
Monday, September 29, 2008
Whew! We are ready for a break from the daily routine at Seagull. The time has come to take life a little easy for awhile. We are excited. Our canoes are put to bed, cabins cleaned and ready for 2009.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Do you have an itch for a fall canoe trip in the BWCA or Quetico? You still have time to plan that fall trip. The weather and scenery are beautiful. No bugs, fall colors, cooler temperatures,and water that is still swimming temperature are just a few reasons to come up with friends and family in the fall. Fishing is also a great reason to come up during the fall months. The fish are getting their feed-bags on in preparation for the long Northwoods Winter.
Wylie caught this 29.5 inch walleye this week.
The fishing will only get better from this point until your favorite northwoods lakes freeze over. If you have any questions planning your fall trip, give us a call or email.
Thanks and keep your line in the water,
Friday, August 15, 2008
The weather and fishing has been heating up recently. Walleye are still being caught and stories of nice stringers have been told. Slip-bobbers and leeches have been the ticket in the BWCA, while a jig and plastic combo has been producing in Quetico. They're catching marble eyes between 15 and 20 feet.
The smallmouth are still hitting on just about anything that can be fished. We had a customer catch a smallie on a yellow Starburst!!! Most people are catching them from the surface to as deep as 30 feet down.
The northerns have also been cooperating quite well with anglers. Jeff caught this beautiful 41 inch pike last week.
Thanks and keep your line in the water,
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Maggie caught this 27.5 inch walleye on Seagull with her parents.
The cabin guests aren't the only ones taking advantage of the great weather. Shakti Khalsa and her little dog Layla went paddling out on Seagull for a few days. Layla had a great time swimming and hanging out around camp. Doesn't she look ready to take on the Boundary Waters?The Plath family paddled out of Seagull in our catamarran. The catamarran's a great option for families with small children because it's so stable. They look ready to go camping!
Look for the winner of July's photo contest- we'll post it in the next few days. August's photo contest is just beginning, and the theme for this month is food. Send us your pictures of the great meals that you managed to whip up out in the woods- your favorite camp dish, your delicious fried fish, your amazing triple-decker s'more- anything you can come up with!
We look forward to hearing from you!
Sunday, July 27, 2008
He was even nice enough to let Dad in on some of the action!
One trip to the BWCA with the whole family can lead to many possibilities, maybe even a family tradition that can be carried on for many years to come!
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
If you're going to be around Seagull anytime soon keep your eyes open- you might get to see these cute little guys too!
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Isn't he pretty?
Hopefully more wildlife photos will be coming soon!
Monday, July 7, 2008
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Fishing has been really good the last couple of weeks. People have been catching all sorts of fish all sorts of ways. Walleyes are have been pretty eager to taste anglers' hooks. There have been a lot of great reports from just about all routes. I talked to a group who came back from Quetico who had a triple while trolling crankbaits!! A lot of people are using crankbaits, jigs/plastic, and lindy rigs, with the trusty slip bobber producing as well. The depth of the walleyes has also surprised a lot of veteran anglers... as shallow as 6 feet during mid-day. Most anglers say the marble eyes are down between 8 and 15 feet of water.
Smallmouth bass have moved onto their spawning beds which made fishing funny, and catch & release vital. The males are protecting the nest from anything that ventures too close. Anything from jigs to topwater to fly-fishing has been producing the scrappy bronzebacks. A lot of people are sight-fishing with a set of polarized sunglasses and fishing individual beds while others cast towards the shoreline and find beds that way.
Most northern pike are being pulled out of 4 to 8 feet of water. Few anglers have been targeting pike so most northerns have been caught while fishing for walleyes and smallies. Pitching jigs has been the presentation of choice for the big pike.
Lake trout have moved deeper over the last couple weeks because of the rising temperature. A majority of the fish are being pulled out of 30 to 60 feet of water. Drifting a spoon or jig have been the weapons of choice.
Let us know how you're doing... PLEASE SEND US PICTURES OF YOUR TRIP!!!
Please practice Selective Harvest and/or Catch & Release.
Thank you and keep your line in the water,
Friday, June 27, 2008
A couple of guys pulled into Seagull today with a Leinenkugel's canoe! A promotion for Honey Weiss beer, the canoe has a honeycomb and bee theme. Pictured above are staffers Sam and Tim, posing with the canoe.
You might be wondering exactly how much Leine's you have to drink before someone gives you a canoe, but that's not quite how it works. These guys were lucky enough to win this fantastic canoe in a raffle! Think a free canoe sounds pretty great? Well, you're in luck! It just so happens that we're currently selling raffle tickets for a brand new Royalex Spirit 2 canoe! Tickets are $5 and all proceeds go to the Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department. The canoe will be raffled off on July 16 at the Gunflint Canoe Races, and you need not be present to win. Email us at email@example.com for more information.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
We all ate way too much, but it was a great time. We hate to see the Petrees leave at the end of this week, but as always, we'll be looking forward to seeing them again next year! Until then, so long and thanks for all the fish!
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
All along the Gunflint, these wild pink roses are blooming. They're most commonly found in open areas, such as in clearings in the woods, or along trails and roads.
The wildlife viewing has also been great over the past few days. Just last night I saw a moose swimming in a pond near the road. Later, when it was dark, some of the other staffers and I were lucky enough to see a chubby little bear cub running down the side of the road! As usual, there are lots of red fox around, especially when driving down the Gunflint in the early evening. There is also a wide variety of turtle species in the ponds and lakes of the BWCA. Red-eared sliders, painted turtles, and box turtles are all pretty common.
I found this painted turtle sunning on some rocks near Saganaga Lake. Isn't he great?!
As always, it's a great time to be in the wilderness. Hope to see you soon!
Monday, June 23, 2008
The season is in full swing and we have lots of parties out on the water this week.
The Moeller party just returned from a great Father-Daughter trip. Three dads and their three eleven-year-old girls paddled and camped for a few days. Here they are right before heading out into the wilderness- if you look closely, you can see an "I heart Dad" t-shirt! Two of the girls had never been into the Boundary Waters and were excited to learn from their friend, who was back for her third trip with her dad.
Who says you can't eat whatever you want when you're in the woods? The guys from the Kopp party rigged up a watermelon so they could portage it and have a tasty treat while out in the woods. They even had it set up so they could tie it up and keep it down in the water to keep it cool. Pretty neat!
This young man from the Brandes party is a fine example of Northwoods style. With that headnet, the mosquitoes should leave him alone, and the nice floppy hat will keep him safe from sunburn. Well done!
As always, I keep my eyes open for wildlife up and down the trail, and sometimes I get lucky. This past week I got to see a painted turtle laying eggs in the sand right on the beach. Also, when I was at Moose Pond, I saw cute little mink running along the shore with a little fish in its mouth! A couple of customers also reported seeing a big bull moose with some impressive antlers near our Sag cabins.
Don't forget about our monthly photo contest! We'd love to see your amazing Boundary Waters fishing pictures- and to hear the fish stories that go along with them!
Hope to see you soon!
Sunday, June 15, 2008
We have had our share of moisture and the woods are beautifully green and lush. Paul and Eric Douglas from Texas just came off the water a few days ago and emailed this beautiful double rainbow. Despite the wetness, they had a good time. The first day of summer is June 20th and we hope that means sunshine and warmer temperatures. The forecast is looking good.
The northern pike are swimming right along with the smallmouth. Most people are using crankbaits and a few spinnerbaits to catch this toothy critter. Most of the bigger northerns have been caught in 5 to 8 feet of water with a few coming shallower.
Eric, from Texas, caught this northern casting towards shore.
Please practice Catch and Release.
Thanks and Keep Your Line in the Water,
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
At the outfitter the other day, we had a pretty great fish story ourselves. I was carrying canoes out to the dock when I spotted some fish fins near the surface of the water. I walked over to get a closer look and couldn't believe what I saw. A good-sized Northern was swimming right next to the dock...with a huge bass stuck in its mouth! Apparently the Northern bit off a little more than he could chew. I yelled for everyone and we all stood there a few minutes, watching the Northern. We were pretty sure he wasn't going to survive. I ran into the store to get the camera, and when I went back out, there was no Northern in the bay, but there was a bass near the shore. So I don't have photographic evidence of my wacky wildlife sighting...but I do have witnesses!
Summer Solstice is approaching, and it's the perfect time to be in the BWCA. Daylight seems to go on forever, so there's plenty of light for paddling and fishing late into the evening. It's great for those who are out camping, as they have some more light to set up camp and watch for those moose that everyone's so excited to see.
Hope to see you soon!
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Fishing is picking up as the water temperature rises. The walleyes are starting to turn back on after recovering from the spawn. Our cabin customers have been picking up a few walleyes on jig/minnow or leech combo. Most of the walleyes are being caught pitching jigs into 5 feet of water. Concentrate on areas of moving water or wind blown points and drop-offs. Most of the 'eyes have been ranging from 15" to 25" with a few bigger walleyes revealing themselves too!
Brock from the Twin Cities caught and released this 30 inch walleye off of his campsite with a slip bobber and minnow.
The smallmouth bass' activity has increased tremendously in the past week. They are even starting to attack topwater baits. Most customers have been catching the smallies in just a little shallower water than the walleyes. Anything from Mepps to X-Raps to Slip Bobbers have been producing 14" to 18" smallies with the biggest I have heard of being around 22" coming on a jig/minnow. Most of the topwater hits have come on floating Rapala and Heddon Torpedos, I even watched a group of smallies attack a bobber sitting on the surface.
Many bass and walleye anglers are also picking up some nice northern pike. The anglers looking for pike have been using Rapalas or Mepps in shallow bays with some really nice results. The biggest pike I heard of was right around 35" inches, caught on a X-Rap.
The lake trout are still sitting surprising shallow. Most are coming from between 8 to 20 feet down. Anglers have been trolling Shad Raps and Minnow Raps over 15 to 30 feet of water on wind blown shorelines. With the lake trout still shallow, the canoe country grand slam (walleye, smallmouth, northern, and laker) ususally rare, is for now, a regular achievement.
Good luck and keep your lines in the water
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
"on the Seagull forum page, go to the "Chat" option on the navigation page (right above the list of Forum options) looks like this: Welcome "User Name" - Control Panel Logout Search New Posts ChatClick "Chat" if you get a page you can't read, you will need to download the latest version of Java 1.5. You can do it at: http://www.java.com/en/ and click the "Free Java Download" button. After it is downloaded, try again and you will be able to get on the chat room and talk live with your fellow Seagull Forum buddies!"
This is a great way to stay connected to forum members and talk fishing, camping, portages and anything else!
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Sunday, April 20, 2008
A couple of return staffers, Shira and Chris will be arriving next week. The t-shirts have started coming in and we just delivered the new Sag Jon Boats to Seagull. By May 3rd, we will have 5 staff on board and you will see us busily working to get the business open and ready. After many months with no change on the webcam, you will see the daily progress of our efforts.
For anyone going into the Quetico or fishing the Canadian side of Saganaga this summer, you may get your fishing license in advance through the mail if you wish. This will get you through the Cache Bay Ranger Station faster and on your way to your favorite fishing holes. If you are interested, follow this link to learn all about the Ontario Fishing Licenses.
http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/198219.pdf . You may call them at 800-677-1940 and process your fishing license over the phone. They will then put it in the mail to you.
Don't forget about our monthly photo contest on our discussion board this year. This is the first month of the contest. Tom and Johnse have worked hard at it and we would love to have your participation.
There are lots of permits for both the Boundary Waters and Quetico left for the summer. Let us know how we can help plan your trip!
Friday, March 21, 2008
As we all know, the North Country lends itself to some fantastic photo opportunities. We're all fortunate to be in the right place at the right time to capture some of these "priceless" moments. Whether it is a sunset, eagle, rainbow, thunderstorm, moose, etc. we'll have a month dedicated to all of these themes, and many more.
To view pictures entered in the contest, and to enter the contest yourself, you can visit the discussion board that will host the contest. Contest rules and the theme for the month will be posted on the discussion board. Remember to return on a monthly basis to catch the latest photo theme, so you can dig into your archives and share with us all.
We hope that you'll get involved and share the "priceless" moments you've caught on film and enter to have a chance to win the monthly prize, and the year end prize.
Enjoy and Good Luck.
Photo Contest link
Friday, February 22, 2008
"The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) near the upper end of the Gunflint Trail has gone through a myriad of changes over the past few years, some more dramatic than others. Two separate but somewhat related issues have arisen over the past few years that I believe are timely to address. Both have to do with our entry point quotas for areas along the Gunflint Trail from about Mid-Trail to the upper end of the Trail.
The first issue resulted from the Alpine Lake, Cavity Lake and Ham Lake fires that caused us to temporarily close portage trails and campsites. Since fewer campsites were available, we also reduced overnight paddle quotas for several entry points from the Granite River, up around the end of the trail, down to Round Lake. All portages were rehabilitated within days of the conclusion of each fire and we are now at a point where we expect to have all but possibly 10 campsites reopened by June of this year.
While it will take years for campsites to regain the “forested” condition campers experienced prior to the fires, we have determined they are stable and suitable for use. Further, we have noticed this past summer, during the busiest part of the season, campsites that were open but had been deforested by the fires were being used by wilderness campers. Therefore I have considered returning fire affected entry point quotas to their normal, pre-fire levels.
The second issue comes from another situation that has been observed over the past several years. The Forest Service has been aware of overcrowding issues related to the western end of the Vento Unit of the BWCAW. Our Wilderness Rangers have often encountered angry visitors who could not find a campsite due to crowding, especially at the height of the summer on heavily used routes. We have recorded (illegal) offsite camping and found that it is common for visitors to leave their wilderness trip sooner than planned due to the lack of campsites. Over the past couple of years, we have stepped up our conversations with visitors and outfitters to get a better picture of the crowding and it has become clear that the situation is chronic.
Our simple analysis demonstrated how this situation has likely come about. The average stay of a BWCAW party is four days and the quota for Duncan Lake Entry Point is four permits per day. Therefore in the busy season, we have 16 parties in an area that contains only 12 campsites. Of course, there are other factors that need to be taken into account such as the type and pattern of travel visitors are doing, the size and shape of the Vento Unit, etc.
As the quotas stand now, the frequency of visitor encounters does not meet Forest Plan standards for solitude. Existing use exceeds the allowable frequency of visitor encounters. Forest Plan direction states: “The purpose of quotas is to distribute visitors and use in a manner that protects the natural resources and wilderness values, and limits the social encounters to that which is appropriate for each management area.... The Forest Service reserves the right to make immediate quota changes if necessary to meet changed conditions” (Forest Plan, ppg 3-54 & 55).
From our review of the situation, I have considered lowering the quota for a few entry points to mitigate overcrowding issues in the Vento Unit. However, before doing so, I wanted to hear from the businesses that would be affected by such a decision. On January 17, 2008, I sent a letter to East Zone BWCAW Cooperators requesting their input on our proposal.
We received several telephone calls and eight outfitters responded by email with comments. As expected, the range of comments received went from no reduction of the quota anywhere at anytime to most outfitters acknowledging that a modification of quotas was needed to address the concerns of disappointed visitors who complained of overcrowding.
Based on a compilation of information from our Wilderness Rangers observations, discussions with visitors and comments from our Cooperators, I have decided to implement the following:
· The Duncan Lake Entry Point 60 quota will be reduced from 4 permits to 3 permits per day.
· The Clearwater Lake Entry Point 62 quota will be reduced from 4 permits to 3 permits per day.
· The East Bearskin Lake Entry Point 64 quota will be reduced from 5 permits to 4 permits per day.
Also at this time, I am resetting the quotas for the following entry points to their pre-fire levels:
· The Seagull Lake Entry Point 54 quota will return to 11 permits per day.
· The Seagull Lake Only Entry Point 54A quota will return to 2 permits per day.
· The Saganaga Lake Entry Point 55 quota will return to 17 permits per day.
· The Magnetic Lake Entry Point 57 quota will return to 3 permits per day.
One final adjustment to the quota system that will be implemented this season is my decision to allow the booking of Seagull Lake Only Entry Point 54A, Saganaga Lake Only Entry Point 55A and Brule Lake Only Entry Point 41A permits to be made at any time in the permit application process instead of issuing these permits only after the regular quota for these lakes have been filled.
These adjustments will take effect February 25, 2008. I feel that the adjustments outlined here are necessary and desirable for the management of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness."
DENNIS D. NEITZKE
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Last yearʼs project successfully cleared the Brule Lake Trail (BLT) and provided excellent hiking for people on their way to Brule Lake and Eagle Mountain, Minnesotaʼs highest point which features a spectacular view of the forests and lakes of canoe country and Lake Superior. The volunteers performed fantastic service in preparing the trail for hikers and the United States Forest Service displays their group photo at the Brule Lake trailhead in appreciation of their efforts.
This yearʼs group of volunteers will maintain the BLT and expand their efforts to a neighboring trail, further increasing the recreational opportunities for visitors. The trail clearing will provide an opportunity for the past yearsʼ veterans to meet up with old friends and make new friends. In addition, new volunteers are invited to join in the group effort to help do tremendous work for the Boundary Waters.
The BWA Committee invites hikers and outdoor enthusiasts to volunteer to help clear these trails. There are several opportunities to participate including our occasional, short planning meetings; training as a trail clearing crew leader, or volunteering for two or three days in May. Planning meetings take approximately three to five hours per month; these meetings resolve the logistics and preparations for the trip. Interested individuals are welcome to help the BWA Committee with its publicity and developing sponsors as well. The BWA Committee will hold a training session for crew leaders and interested volunteers in April, with a time and location to be announced. Previous experience is useful, but not required. Most importantly, volunteers are needed to clear trails in the forests of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area for a two, three or four day detail, as desired.
BWA Committee was founded by Martin Kubik in 2002 with the intent to preserve intrinsically beautiful historic hiking trails in the BWCA in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service. Martin Kubik is the recipient of the 2007 Great Lakes Region Volunteer of the Year award as presented by the American Hiking Society.
Contact Martin Kubik, BWA Committee president at 651-214-5849 or e-mail at HELPclearEAGLEmtn@yahoo.com , OR visit the BWACommittee website www.bwac.homestead.com to reserve a place.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Where do things stand for Land and Sea Travel?Currently, most travellers only require a driver's license (or other government-issued photo I.D.) or a birth certificate, though customs officers don't always request to see them. Verbal declarations of citizenship are still accepted, but travellers should carry proof just in case.However, stricter requirements for Land and Sea entry will come into affect on January 31, 2008 – but don't panic about getting a passport just yet. This date is when border patrol will stop accepting verbal declarations of citizenship and start asking you for documentation. Government-issued photo I.D. (such as a drivers' license) and a birth certificate will suffice for most travellers. Unlike current requirements, you will be asked to produce both documents, not just one.When will a passport be required for Land and Sea? According to media reports, a bill was passed in congress on December 20, 2007 that delays the passport requirement at least until June 2009. Ultimately, it's up to the U.S. government to decide the final date. The U.S. Homeland Security website notes that 60 days notice will be given before new legislation comes into effect to allow people time to obtain required documentation.The link for the entire article is here: http://www.allsafetravels.com/travelarticlespage.aspx?articleID=34&gclid=CKPh8cP5iJECFQIUPAoda3ZIGASo for all of 2008, you will not need a passport for land or sea travel to Canada. An RABC will suffice just like in the past.
Let's hope this brings some closure to this question for summer 2008. Thanks Johnse for your help!
Saturday, January 12, 2008
Gunflint Green Up Schedule:
Boreal Forest talks and walks
Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department demonstrations
Dinner & Special presentation
Renowned wilderness photographer Layne Kennedy will share his experiences in the BWCAW and along The Gunflint Trail
Training and planting
Thank You Dinner & Dance with live music at Gunflint Lodge
Gunflint Green Up Ham Run Half Marathon
Visit www.gunflintgreenup.com for more information.
Wednesday, January 2, 2008