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fish2 The BWCA has designated campsites that include a fire grate and box latrine. For Quetico trips you need to carry your own fire grate and a small shovel.

For campfires, use only dead and down wood that’s gathered away from the campsite. It is illegal to cut live vegetation for any reason.

Drown your campfire with water whenever leaving camp.

Have respect for fellow campers by keeping noise levels at a minimum.

The lake water is pollution-free, however, there’s always that chance of coming in contact with Giardia parasite. Thus it’s recommended that you boil or filter your water before drinking.


Dump soapy dishwater at least 150 feet from the shoreline.

Every person must have a life vest (PFD). Although wearing one is not required by law, it must at least be accessible when traveling in the canoe or boat.

The entire Quetico Park is non-motorized, as is virtually all of the BWCA as well. The only BWCA lakes in the Ely area that allow motors are Fall Lake, Newton, Snowbank, South Farm, the Moose Lake Chain, and parts of Basswood Lake.

gearRapids in our area are generally not safe to “run.” Portages have been made for a reason and we suggest using them at all times.

We are a Cooperator with the USDA Forest Service under the Superior National Forest.  We issue permits into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), part of the National Wilderness Preservation System.  To preserve the wilderness, visitors to the BWCAW must follow certain regulations.  Click here for a complete list of USDA BWCAW Regulations.

In the Quetico:   Dogs are allowed as long as rabies shot papers are along.  Barbless hooks are required for fishing (you may pinch-down the barbs on the hooks that you presently have).  No live bait is allowed in Quetico but it is OK in the BWCA.   Firearms are also banned in the Quetico

     * * * * “As a cooperator we are an equal opportunity service provider” * * * * 

BWCA ENTRY PERMITS & CAMPING FEES – Entry permits are required for overnight camping in the BWCA. Each permit and campsite allows up to nine people. Larger party sizes would need additional permits and must camp at more than one campsite. Permits are very limited so early reservations are advised. The BWCA camping fee is $16 per adult per trip, while youth under age 18 pay $8 per trip.

We’ll gladly reserve permits in your behalf but you also have the option of going online and reserving direct with the Permit Center (www.recreation.gov). Each permit requires a $6 non-refundable application fee plus a camping fee deposit.  You have the option of paying all camping fees in advance or just the $32 minimum requirement (then pay the remainder upon arrival in Ely).

When we reserve a permit in your behalf we add a $10 service fee.


Chicago – 567

Cincinnati  863

Cleveland – 917

Des Moines – 487

Dubuque – 444

Fargo – 275

Indianapolis – 750

Kansas City – 679

Louisville – 865

Milwaukee – 496

Minn./St. Paul  225

Omaha – 620

St. Louis – 780

QUETICO ENTRY PERMITS & CAMPING FEES – Each Quetico Park entry permit and campsite allows up to 9 people.  All camping fees are payable in advance using a Visa or Mastercard.  For the Prairie Portage entry point the camping fee amount is $21.50 per adult per night and $8.50 for those age 6-17 (in Canadian Funds).  Go to www.ontarioparks.com to reserve a permit, or, contact us and we’ll take care of it on your behalf for a $10 service fee.
CANADIAN CUSTOMS REQUIREMENTS – Those entering the Quetico Park through the Prairie Portage or Cache Bay Ranger Stations must clear Canadian Customs by mail at least 4 weeks in advance of the trip. We’ll provide the necessary RABC form for this clearance once your Quetico entry permit has been secured. The RABC form covers the applicant, spouse, and all dependent children under the age of 18. Anyone under the age of 18 who doesn’t have a parent going on the trip must file their own RABC form (free of charge).  The RABC cost is $30. Anyone who has been convicted of a DWI-DUI offense in the past 10 years will be denied access into Canada.  To Re-Enter The U.S. – Each person age 16 and older who visit Canada by land or water needs a Passport to re-enter the U.S. after the trip.  Those under age 16 only need a copy of their Birth Certificate.  Youth under age 18 that are part of a non-profit group only need a photocopy of their birth certificate.  For cost and information on Passport issues go to www.travel.state.gov

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