Since 1976

Love the Boundary Waters?
You're Among Friends

Plan Your Boundary
Waters Adventure

From a searchable route library with BWCA maps to information on permits, we have the resources you need to explore the Boundary Waters. With more than 1,100 lakes, 1,200 miles of canoe routes, a dozen rugged hiking trails and over 1.1 million acres, the BWCA offers endless opportunities for adventure.


Stop Toxic Mining near the Boundary Waters

Two proposed copper-sulfide mines — PolyMet and Twin Metals — risk contaminating some of the cleanest water on earth and permanently polluting the BWCA. If these mines open, they would produce acid mine drainage and cause irreparable harm to our beloved wilderness. Learn more about how we are beating back these toxic mines and how you can join a movement.


Wilderness education that promotes equity in the wild

Young people who grow up in our hyper-connected, digital world need the wilderness more than ever. Through our No Boundaries to the Boundary Waters program, we introduce students from diverse backgrounds and underserved communities to the splendors of the wilderness, both in the classroom and through week-long trips into the BWCA.


Thriving Communities

The future of the BWCA is deeply tied to the economic prosperity and wellbeing of the communities that surround the Boundary Waters. We work with local businesses, organizations, and individuals on projects that build thriving communities to ensure people have a stable and viable livelihood.


Upcoming Events

Graphic: Tea Time with Friends - December 8 - This month's topic
| Friends Ely Office, 8 E. Sheridan St., Ely, MN

ELY: Tea Time with the Friends

Join us in Ely for a monthly discussion, to learn, share knowledge and grow!  We’ll provide tea, hot chocolate and…

Skiers in the woods - Text says Ely Monthly Skiing with Friends Third Saturday each month
| Ely Minnesota, various locations

Ely Winter Ski Progression

Join Friends and neighbors for a monthly ski this winter! From 1:00-3:00 on the 3rd Saturdays each month.

Explore Our Blog

Breaking news, in-depth stories, tips for wilderness travel, and insights into America’s most popular Wilderness Area.

Give to the Max logo graphic, featuring a loon with a baby on its back.
| Advocacy

Give to the Max for the BWCA

Support the Boundary Waters on Give to the Max Day 2023! Find out all the details to make the most…

How To Help

The wilderness needs people. It needs you.
Learn more about how you can give back to the Boundary Waters.

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness acknowledges that the land and water we are dedicated to protecting is on the traditional homelands of the Anishinaabe people, who continue to live in the area and exercise treaty rights on this land and water. We humbly work to honor this living history and learn how the Anishinaabe relationship with this land and water continues to grow and evolve. Together, we strive to build mutual respect, trust and understanding around what it means to protect the Boundary Waters.