Good route for fishing in BWCAW

I am planning to make a trip to the BWCAW in late July. Primary purpose is fishing. I prefer smaller lakes and rivers. I don’t mind portages but would like to limit portages to 1/2 mile or less. Looking at a 5-6 day trip and am not interested in traveling great distances, but rather quality fishing time in an area that normally produces fish fairly well.

I am open to suggestions on entry points and routes.

Fishing in the BWCAW
I may not be the best one to answer your questions, but since no one else has responded, I’ll give it a go. I’ve been tripping/fishing in the BWCAW/Quetico area since 1969, but I have been going exclusively to Quetico since about 1992.

One of the first things that you need to consider is that entry into the BWCAW is strictly by permit. I would have to guess that most of the permits for late July are already taken, so I would suggest that you find out what permits are still available. This could have a huge impact on your EP.

One of the things that separates the crowds is the longer portages. Limiting yourself to nothing much over 1/2 mile is not going to get you away from other people. One of the main reasons that I have been going to Quetico is the fact that they have only about 1/4 the number of permits available and thus fewer people in the park.

When I did go into the BWCAW, I usually went in from the Gunflint Trail out of grand Marais. One option for you to consider if permits are available is to enter through Clearwater lake (I always used Clearwater Lodge Outfitters) and head east to West Pike. You’ll only have 1 portage of about 1/2 mile. West Pike was always a very good small mouth lake, but that was 30 years ago. You can make a nice loop by going from West Pike to Pine Lake (1 mile portage but an easy portage), Pine Lake to Little Caribou Lake (Little Caribou only has one campsite, but it is a great one if available), Little Caribou to caribou, and Caribou back to Clearwater.

I used to do this route on a regular basis in the 70’s and saw very few people. That was not the case when I returned for one last trip in this area in 1991.

I hope that this helps.


I have been to the Bwca Every year for the past 15 or so and have even been twice on some years. Its hard to find a bad fising spot in the bw. In July The best bet will be for wallys northern and smallys. Lake trout will be deep but not imposible to find. Northerns will be hot and easy just fish the shores and logs. I prefer spring trip because the wallys and trout are more aboundant but once helped my dad land the biggest fish of his life a northern that was all of 50" My advice look up Long Island Lake I took my first trip there. 7 portages most only 40 rods or less each. can be in camp in just 5 hours catching dinner in 6. There are at least 3 ways to get to Long Island. Enloy the trip its unlike any place on earth.

You might try…
Entry Point 16: Moose River North, smaller river smaller lake potiential… Go to Agnes, then Oyster and north up to Gebegoneqet then to Lac La Croix and south to Tiger Bay area or Agnes and out…

Available permits:

July 12 - 4

July 13 -1

July 19 - 2

Better act fast!


Try Kawishiwi Lake
Kawishiwi Lake, EP 37, would be a good option. Polly, Koma and Malberg are all good walleye producers.

My dad caught and released the biggest Northern I’ve ever seen on Koma and malberg is a good walleye hole just a day trip away from malberg is Makwa with good lake trout. Best fishing is right off the rocks at the campsite