Bartlett Carry questions

-Anyone used this portage recently?

-Can anyone tell me what shape this 1/2 mile portage is in? I realize conditions will change following rain, etc.

-Would a small lawnmower wheeled cart work with a 150 lbs of boat and gear or is the trail too rugged?



Big Wheels and no connecting axle
250 canoes and kayaks and guideboats went over the Bartlett Carry last Sunday morning. It is in great shape. We wheeled a Minnesota IV over it all the way. Going from Upper to Middle Saranac the first half is gravel road, wide and uphill. Just east of the peak about 100yards you leave the road and head into the forest on a narrow trail that turns and twists down to the put-in. There are several spots with rocks in the trail that have to be straddled by the cart wheels. Those low rear mounted kayak carts do not have large enough wheels to handle the rough terrain. And any cart with an axle between the wheels will need to be lifted over the rocks.

The best canoe cart for this and most Adirondack carries is the Swedish design with 20" bike wheels and no connecting axle. It is sold now as the “Canadian” boat cart, though most seem to be made in China. The older Swedish version was very adjustable, you could make the track between the wheels wider or narrower to suit the canoe. The later versions have a fixed track, but are much stiffer. I have 8 90 milers on my cart from Oak Orchard Canoe with only one breakdown; carrying a 20’ Grumman War Canoe over Brown’s Tract Carry when one of the screws securing the left boat support broke and the left support rail kept rotating downward, letting the wheel rub against the bottom of the Grumman. A hardened machine screw solved that problem.


Bartlett carry
Bill nailed it

I think it would be a real struggle trying to push just my small-wheeled lawnmower over the easternmost, trailed section of this carry. It’s only about 1/4 of total distance & partly downhill if going Upper-Middle so perhaps you could wheel the rd portion & actually carry the trailed section ?

in the dacks?
I gather this is the one in the dacks? between upper and middle saranac? a better place to ask this question is over at

I’d have to say it’s possible with the wheels you mention. The first part you’re on the road and after the road part most is down hill on the trail.

btw, I did the “90” this past sept, and that was the last time I was there.

No need for wheels
This is one of the worlds shortest canoe carries. My wife can schlep a canoe from one end to the other at this one. I cannot count the number of times I have passed people trying to drag a kayak or canoe up the little incline from Middle (get out of the way) while I was carrying one of my canoes. The wheels are more of a hindrance than a benefit as far as I can see.