Clearwater Lake Loop
- Skill Level
- Entry Point
- #84 Snake River
- Portage Rods
- Longest Portage
This route offers some great opportunities for jumping to and from lakes. It moves north from Bald Eagle Lake to Gull Lake and onto Clearwater Lake before looping back to Bald Eagle and the Snake River, offering you exhilarating challenges and the opportunity to see an interesting, less traveled part of the BWCA.
Detailed Route Info
To get to Bald Eagle Lake, start by taking the 170-rod portage down an abandoned logging road plus two simple, short portages along the Snake River. Consider spending a night or two on Bald Eagle Lake, and perhaps also exploring west into Gabbro Lake. Both of these huge lakes are known for good walleye fishing.
The 192-rod portage to Gull Lake starts just north of a small, low-lying island. The first couple rods of the stream exiting Gull Lake are strewn with dark, slightly submerged boulders lurking for your canoe, so paddle with care. The portage from Gull Lake to Pietro Lake is almost perfectly level. During the rainy season this flatness becomes a liability because the trail is relatively low-lying and prone to becoming fairly muddy. Nevertheless, it is not too long and should always be traversable.
Next, the 64 rod portage up to Camdre Lake gradually climbs 50 feet along a relatively easy trail. Paddle across little Camdre Lake and perhaps pause to observe the fascinating bog life, including pitcher plants common along parts of the shore. The 125-rod portage to Clearwater Lake gently rolls along a reasonably good trail.
Clearwater Lake is fittingly named, with waters that seem clearer than most in the BWCAW. Portage 211 rods from Clearwater to Turtle Lake. The four campsites on Turtle are very likely to be available even if Clearwater is full because Turtle Lake attracts fewer campers. From Turtle Lake continue south over the 186 -od portage down into Bald Eagle Lake. Your return trip is simply a paddle and portage back the way you came.
Like what you see?
Donate to support this valuable resource and ensure the wilderness you love stays protected from threats and stays wild for future generations.Donate Now
There are no reviews yet. Be the first one to write one.
Leave Your Review
Ready to Reserve Your Permits?
Once you have selected your route it’s time to reserve your permit to ensure your spot for the date you want.