Join us at the second annual Boundary Waters Expo, to be held June 11-12th, 2016 at the Seagull Lake public landing on the Gunflint Trail. This is a family-friendly, hands-on event with fun for everyone. Come enjoy the place that National Geographic has named one of the world’s “50 Places of a Lifetime.” Your Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness adventure starts here!
Sat 9-6pm, followed by a campfire discussion with Cliff Jacobson.
Sun 10-4pm, followed by the Shrimp Broil.
The Boundary Waters Expo will feature:
- Hands-on demonstrations
- Breathtaking scenery
- Campfire storytelling and discussions led by Cliff Jacobson and others.
- A Shrimp Boil and Bake Sale, benefiting the Gunflint Trail Historical Society and the Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center
- And more! .
Book your stay today! See Gunflint Trail lodging and businesses
SPONSORS + more to come!Bending Branches click to expand
Bending Branches In 1982, whitewater and touring canoeist Dale Kicker and flat-water racer Ron Hultman teamed up to create the first composite tipped canoe paddle. This unique innovation revolutionized the paddle industry and gave birth to Bending Branches. Since that birth, paddles from this Wisconsin company have propelled people to the places and experiences that people dream of. This spirit of adventure continues to drive Bending Branches to enhance your paddling experience.
Camp Chow click to expand
Chik-Wauk Museum & Nature Center click to expand
Chik-Wauk Museum & Nature Center: Journey 55 miles up the Gunflint Trail to a first-class museum housed in the historic Chik-Wauk Lodge. Learn the natural and cultural history of the rugged, remote area of the Gunflint Trail. Visit the activity-oriented Nature Center. Come join the Gunflint Trail Explorers Club. Discover some of the local plants and animals and enjoy a network of hiking trails. Open Memorial Weekend to mid-October.
Cooke Custom Sewing click to expand
Cooke Custom Sewing at CCS, “Locally Sewn, Globally Tested” is more than just a nice slogan – we are truly committed to those words. From our shop in Minnesota, we have been designing and producing some of the finest gear made for canoeists and other outdoor enthusiasts since 1980. We are inspired by our own travels and our constant search for the best gear.
Duluth Pack click to expand
Duluth Pack has continuously handcrafted hunting, shooting and outdoor gear in MN since 1882. The quality, time-tested craftsmanship & hardware are guaranteed for life. Duluth Pack strives to make the world’s best high-quality canvas and leather packs, luggage, purses and briefcases and will continue to make them in the USA with a lifetime warranty.
Fjällräven click to expand
Fjällräven Ever since the company started in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden in 1960, Fjällräven has been driven by the notion of offering timeless, functional and durable equipment for a variety of wonderful experiences in nature. To leave no trace is a motto among outdoor enthusiasts. And just as we would like to leave last night’s campsite so that the next visitors can enjoy undisturbed nature, we would also like Fjällräven as a company to have as small of an environmental footprint as possible.
Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness click to expand
Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness is a nonprofit organization with a mission to protect, preserve and restore the wilderness character of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and the Quetico-Superior ecosystem.
Frost River click to expand
Frost River handcrafts heritage-style bags and canoe packs at their shop in Duluth, MN. Their quality materials include waxed canvas, premium leathers and robust hardware that allow them to offer a lifetime guarantee – a remarkable product with an understated look.
Langford Canoe click to expand
Langford Canoe For over 75 Years the Langford Canoe name has stood for the highest quality. As leaders in craftsmanship performance and design Langford offers a wide range of products for beginners to seasoned paddlers. From our first model built over 7 decades ago, Langford has built canoes that blend exceptionally beauty, elegant lines, durability, and light weights with excellent handling characteristics.
Level Six click to expand
Level Six is a Canadian company born and bred on the banks of the Ottawa River. Designed in Ottawa and tested on the water all over the world, we strive to provide the best paddling equipment and gear possible to make your paddling experience complete. Whether you are playing on the river, scouting that next descent, touring the cove, challenging yourself with a new SUP yoga pose or just hanging out at the lake; Level Six promises to keep you comfortable, technically sound and outlasting trends.
Nemo Equipment click to expand
Nemo Equipment designs and engineers high quality outdoor gear. Nemo is at the cutting edge of the industry, building tents, sleeping systems, and accessories for life in the outdoors.
Northstar Canoes click to expand
Northstar Canoes has a clear direction. Guided by renowned canoe builder Ted Bell, they’re focused on crafting exceptional canoes for experienced paddlers. But even a novice can paddle one – they’re designed to make you a better canoeist. And before too long, you’ll be discoursing about your appreciation of the elliptical cross-section, soft chines and constant flare.
Nova Craft Canoe click to expand
Nova Craft Canoe began in 1970, when they started producing a limited selection of fiberglass canoes in a small-scale, garage-based operation near London, Ontario, Canada. As the years passed and the reputation of their quality designs and workmanship quickly spread, and the company naturally began to grow.
Today, Nova Craft still builds canoes with fiberglass but have also adopted more advanced composite materials including aramid, basalt/Innegra, and carbon fibre. Alongside the use of these new materials came innovations in new manufacturing techniques including composite infusion, thermoplastic vacuum forming and rotational molding. The scope may have expanded since 1970 but the core focus remains simple – build quality canoes that give paddlers special experiences in the great outdoors. It’s all about making a connection to nature and wild places, be it solo or with friends and family.
Radiant Spirit Gallery click to expand
Radiant Spirit Gallery: Gary Fiedler and Dawn LaPointe are outdoor enthusiasts and inspired photographers with Radiant Spirit Gallery based near Duluth. The husband and wife team passionately explores the north woods of Minnesota and Ontario, capturing the wilderness experience on camera. Their portfolio covers the spectrum, ranging from images of the tiny critters on the forest floor, to intimate and grand landscapes, and everything in between, during all seasons, all weather, day and night. Their award-winning fine art nature photography/videography appears in the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, various magazines (including “The Boundary Waters Journal” and “Canoeroots”), documentaries by the Smithsonian Channel and Weather Channel, retail stores (including Duluth Pack and Piragis), and regional art shows. Their photography will inspire you to explore the wilderness and reach for your dreams!
Sealskinz click to expand
Sealskinz is the industry leader in waterproof paddle clothing accessories. Sealskinz designs and builds socks, gloves and hats for outdoors, bike and canoe sports.
Seattle Sports click to expand
Seattle Sports Since 1983, Seattle Sports has strived to honor the relationship between outdoor adventure and everyday life through innovation, history, and an understanding of our environment. The result is the continued creation of a wide selection of quality outdoor gear at a full range of price points. We produce gear that speaks to a world where outdoors and everyday are synonymous.
Sigurd Canoe Co click to expand
Launched by avid canoeist and lover of everything outdoors, Jamie Cooper started making paddles in the backyard of his childhood home with nothing more than a chisel and block plane. After a small interest quickly turned into an obsession, Sigurd Canoe Company was launched. We are committed to creating high quality handmade wooden canoe paddles. Made from a variety of woods to create a functional, strong, lightweight paddle that will stand the test of time. Having a variety of different paddles, Sigurd Canoe Co. is sure to meet your paddle needs.
St. Croix Canoes click to expand
St. Croix Canoes builds fine custom made, hand crafted cedar strip canoes. St. Croix Canoes was started on a whim by a couple of old Scout Guys. After their sons were finished with Boy Scouting (Eagles Scouts, as well), several leaders wanted to stay connected. The idea of canoe building was presented and it seemed like a worthy project. Their canoes are beautiful, light and strong, and built with techniques backed up by many miles of BWCA and Quetico paddling.
- And more to come!
SPEAKERS + more to come!Cliff Jacobson click to expand
Cliff Jacobson is one of North America’s most respected outdoors writers, wilderness guides, national and foreign consultants, and is the most published canoeing/camping writer of this century. He is a professional canoe guide and outfitter, a wilderness canoeing and camping consultant and the author of over a dozen top-selling books on camping and canoeing— numerous titles have been translated into Spanish, German, French and Turkish with sales approaching one million copies. His video, The Forgotten Skills, details the most important campcraft procedures. Cliff’s methods are proven by the sweat of pack and paddle and are reminiscent of the days when skills were more important than things. A retired environmental science teacher (34 years!), Cliff is respected by educators for his backcountry ethics, water quality, and wilderness navigation curricula. The Wilderness Meal, an outdoor ethics unit he wrote for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MNR), is among the most successful environmental education activities of all time. You’ll find a copy in his book, Boundary Waters Canoe Camping With Style.
Rediscover North America Expedition click to expand
Members of the Rediscover North America Expedition. How do you even begin to think about canoeing from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic Ocean? Well, this massive canoe trip had its origins on the Hudson Bay in 2012, when Winchell Delano and three others finished a 2600-mile canoe expedition across Canada’s Northern Territories. At that moment, the feeling of accomplishment seemed outweighed by something else. He wasn’t sure what. But, by the time that he returned to work in November of 2012, it was pretty clear. The journey wasn’t over yet – it was just on hold. Something bigger was brewing. On a flight from Salt Lake City to Minneapolis, Winchell and Adam Trigg started to talk about future canoe trips across Canada. Adam joked aloud: “We could just start in the Gulf and paddle up the Mississippi …” They both laughed, but at the same time loved the idea, because it seemed to perfectly juxtapose nature and culture, the wilds of Canada and the more densely populated United States. The result? Six guys paddled 245 days through twelve states, three provinces and two territories by way of sixteen rivers to cover a total of 5,230 miles across the US and Canada. The best part? The people we met and kindness we were shown.
Kelly Dahl click to expand
Kelly Dahl has explored the far reaches of the BWCA and Quetico for the past 20 years. As a canoe and backpacking guide for camps along the Gunflint Trail and as an Outward Bound instructor, she has brought many diverse groups into the backcountry. Her outdoor experience also includes dog sledding up in Alaska. She has raced numerous dog sled races in Alaska, including racing and finishing the 2003 Iditarod Dog Sled race. When not out in the woods or home at the cabin on the Gunflint Trail, Kelly works as a registered nurse in an` emergency room in the Twin Cities. She has also worked as an RN in the emergency room in Grand Marais, often dealing with medical emergencies that have come out of the backcountry. Currently, when on the trail, she volunteers as an EMT-B on the Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department. In between all of that, she instructs for Wilderness Medical Associates International teaching wilderness first aid, wilderness first responder, and wilderness EMT courses.
Paul Dahl click to expand
Paul Dahl became a paramedic in 1984 and spent 10 years working and teaching EMTs and Paramedics in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Paul became and RN in 1993 and has worked in major trauma centers and rural hospital emergency departments. From 2002 to 2012 Paul was at North Shore hospital in Grand Marais. During his time in the ED, Paul has witnessed multitudes of people wreck their vacations (or their lives) through poor planning, bad luck or sheer stupidity. Paul loves to get outside to bike, paddle, hunt, fish, hike, and watch the sunset. He moved to the Gunflint Trail in 2005 and is an EMT-Basic on the Gunflint Trail VFD. He commutes to the Twin Cities twice a month to work at Woodwinds hospital in the emergency department.
Gary Fiedler and Dawn LaPointe of Radiant Spirit Gallery click to expand
Gary Fiedler and Dawn LaPointe are outdoor enthusiasts and inspired photographers with Radiant Spirit Gallery based near Duluth. The husband and wife team passionately explores the north woods of Minnesota and Ontario, capturing the wilderness experience on camera. In 2014, Gary completed a 221-day solo canoe trip throughout the BWCAW and Quetico Provincial Park, and one of Dawn’s canoescape photographs was juried into the Wilderness Forever Exhibit at the Smithsonian. Their portfolio covers the spectrum, ranging from images of the tiny critters on the forest floor, to intimate and grand landscapes, and everything in between, during all seasons, all weather, day and night. Their award-winning fine art nature photography/videography appears in the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, various magazines (including “The Boundary Waters Journal” and “Canoeroots”), documentaries by the Smithsonian Channel and Weather Channel, retail stores (including Duluth Pack and Piragis), and regional art shows. Their photography will inspire you to explore the wilderness and reach for your dreams!
Lonnie Dupre click to expand
Lonnie Dupre During an arctic career spanning 25 years, Lonnie Dupre has traveled over 15,000 miles throughout the high arctic and polar regions by dog team, ski and kayak. His path has often followed in the footsteps of the Arctic explorers of the last century – Robert E. Peary, Roald Amundsen and Knud Rasmussen. Like them, Lonnie has lived and traveled with the Polar Inuit, learning from these hardy people and developing a deep appreciation for their culture and way of life.So is his belief in ones ability to overcome the seemingly insurmountable obstacles that may stand between an individual and their dream. The success of his arctic expeditions, with the extreme physical, mental and logistical hurdles they have represented, stand as testament to this.
Rob Kesselring click to expand
Rob Kesselring is a veteran leader of 21 arctic canoe expeditions, 71 BWCAW-Quetico trips and he has paddled over 100 rivers worldwide. He is currently a licensed Guide in the Boundary Waters, Big Bend, and Gates of the Arctic National Parks. He is the author of two books, River Stories and Daughter Father Canoe and has spoken the Expos across the country.
Sue Plankis click to expand
Canadian Sue Plankis is an expert canoeist and citizen naturalist. She earned a masters degree in science and education. She has a forty year history of canoeing and is a former distinguished and certified instructor/trainer. Her mentors include Omer Stringer and Tom Mckenzie. Her grace on the water captivates audiences young and old. A skilled citizen naturalist, Sue has 314 birds on her Minnesota life list and is an avid birder, bird bander, and wildlife researcher.
Bear Paulsen click to expand
Bear Paulsen feels at home in the wilderness of the boreal forest. He loves to explore northern Minnesota, northwestern Ontario, Manitoba and beyond. He spends most of his time canoeing and winter camping, as these two activities allow him to take extended trips to remote places. He often travels solo so that he can read, write and see lots of wildlife. He has spent a total of nearly one year paddling solo in the boreal forest.
And more to come!
PRESENTATIONS + more to come!Photography in Canoe Country click to expand
Photography in Canoe Country – presented by Join Gary Fiedler and Dawn LaPointe of Radiant Spirit Gallery for a photo hike near the expo grounds. They’ll share tips for using and protecting camera gear while wilderness tripping, and will lead an informal instructional photo shoot. All cameras and levels of experience are welcome, so bring a camera and instruction manual (if available), and enjoy photographing inspirations in nature.
Build your own BWCA canoe click to expand
Build your own BWCA canoe – presented by St. Croix Canoes
Have you ever wanted to build a cedar-strip canoe? Don’t know how to get started? Worried that it’s too hard? Visit with the guys from St. Croix Canoes. We will share tips, tricks, and some lessons learned. See the various methods described in the well-known “how-to” books on canoe building. You can see some of the tools and techniques to give you the confidence to build it yourself.
Travel Like a Wilderness Guide click to expand
Travel Like a Wilderness Guide
Tips from 1,000 Trips – presented by Rob Kesselring
Canoe camping tips and secrets gleaned from decades of wilderness travels in The Boundary Waters, Quetico, the arctic and the desert Southwest. Planning, packing, canoe choice, paddling techniques, gear, safety, navigation, dehydrating meat, cook kits, campsite selection, weather, bears, essential knots, cooking, and group dynamics,
An entertaining, information-packed session from one of the most experienced canoe guides in North America.
Bannock – the bread of the backcountry click to expand
Bannock — the bread of the backcountry – presented by Rob Kesselring
A hands-on outside demonstration of how to make bannock in the bush. Rob learned how to make bannock when he lived with the Dene first nation people of the far north. Participants will learn how to make it and will taste it. Learn why bannock is the difference between visiting the bush and living in the bush. Cliff Jacobson claims Rob’s bannock is simply the best.
Birding in the Boundary Waters click to expand
Birding in the Boundary Waters – presented by Sue Plankis
For five years Sue has led extraordinary canoe camping birding seminars in the Boundary Waters. This will be an early morning walking field trip in search of the many breeding species of birds native to the Boundary Waters. Her keen ear, uncanny spotting ability and knowledge of bird habitats will lift a curtain for participants to the bird world of the Boundary Waters. If possible, participants should bring binoculars. limited to 12 adults.
Canadian Style Paddling Demonstration click to expand
Canadian Style Paddling Demonstration – presented by Sue Plankis
Sue will perform and on-the-water demonstration of style canoeing. Canadian Style and American Freestyle canoeing are forms of paddling that, though a variety of paddle strokes, create astonishing canoe dances on the water.
The Rediscover North America Expedition click to expand
The Rediscover North America Expedition – presented by Adam Trigg
How do you even begin to think about canoeing from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic Ocean? Well, this massive canoe trip had its origins on the Hudson Bay in 2012, when Winchell Delano and three others finished a 2600-mile canoe expedition across Canada’s Northern Territories. At that moment, the feeling of accomplishment seemed outweighed by something else. He wasn’t sure what. But, by the time that he returned to work in November of 2012, it was pretty clear. The journey wasn’t over yet – it was just on hold. Something bigger was brewing. On a flight from Salt Lake City to Minneapolis, Winchell and Adam Trigg started to talk about future canoe trips across Canada. Adam joked aloud: “We could just start in the Gulf and paddle up the Mississippi …” They both laughed, but at the same time loved the idea, because it seemed to perfectly juxtapose nature and culture, the wilds of Canada and the more densely populated United States. The result? Six guys paddled 245 days through twelve states, three provinces and two territories by way of sixteen rivers to cover a total of 5,230 miles across the US and Canada. The best part? The people we met and kindness we were shown.
When Mishaps Happen: Wilderness First Aid Tips & Techniques click to expand
When Mishaps Happen: Wilderness First Aid Tips & Techniques – presented by Paul and Kelly Dahl
What happens when your long anticipated wilderness trip goes wrong with an injury or illness? In this presentation, we will explore some of the common mishaps that occur out on the trail and how to approach such issues in the wilderness setting. Simple tips that can either help prevent or decrease the chance of making a medical issue worse will be covered. We will also discuss wilderness first aid kit items and demonstrate essential first aid techniques.
Bear-proofing Your Camp – with Cliff Jacobson click to expand
BEAR-PROOFING YOUR CAMP – presented by Cliff Jacobson
Learn how to protect yourself and your food from bothersome Boundary
Waters bears–“treeing food packs” doesn’t always work! Know how
to properly use pepper spray to discourage a bear. Understand the
behavioral differences between wild, man-wise and habituated bears.
What should you do when you meet a bear on the trail? What precautions
can you take to prevent bears (and small animals) from getting your
If you’ve read Cliff’s views on bears in his books, you know he
challenges accepted beliefs. Now, research by Stephen Herrero and
James Gary Shelton suggest he’s right on track!
Packing & Portaging – with Cliff Jacobson click to expand
PACKING AND PORTAGING – presented by Cliff Jacobson
Learn how to easily waterproof your gear and pack efficiently for a
Boundary Waters canoe trip. Probe the pro’s and con’s of various packs
and wanigans (dry boxes) and learn how each is best utilized on a
canoe trip. Adventurous participants may try double-packing a heavy
load with a tumpline. We’ll check out packs, procedures, portage
yokes, canoe tumplines and canoe lift-and-carry procedures.
Cliff will also be providing personal canoe instruction during the entire event.
Adventures with Lonnie Dupre click to expand
In 2001, Dupre and his teammate John Hoelscher of Australia became the first to circumnavigate Greenland. They traveled the 6,500 miles of rugged island coastline by dog team and kayak.
Lonnie’s multi-media, 50 minute presentation will be about the 3000 plus mile kayak portion of that trip. There will be Q&A afterwords.
Save the Boundary Waters Campaign click to expand
The Save the Boundary Waters Campaign northeast regional organizer Ingrid Lyons will give a talk on the Campaign, covering basics like what the Twin Metals project is and how it threatens the BWCA as well as wilderness edge communities such as Grand Marais. She will go into the science and economics of the issue, as well as let folks know how they can help in this effort.
Several additional presentation topics to come featuring Bear Paulson, US Forest Service, and more!!!
- Camp Chow
- Duluth Pack
- Radiant Spirit Gallery
- Frost River
- St. Croix Canoes
- Nemo Equipment
- Seattle Sports
- Nova Craft Canoe
- Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness
- The Campaign to Save the Boundary Waters
- Level Six
- Langford Canoe
- Northstar Canoe
This event is in cooperation with and under a Special Use Permit from U.S. Forest Service, Gunflint Ranger District
Sometimes, the best way to reconnect is to disconnect. How is it that when you set out to leave the world behind, the world is exactly what you discover? Lakes, trees, trails, a canoe in the water, and an outfitter to set you up. All right here by your Bearskin Lodge cabin on Minnesota’s famed Gunflint Trail. Nestled in the pristine woods of northeastern Minnesota between Lake Superior and the Boundary Waters Canoe area (BWCA wilderness). As far as you can get from the rest of the world.
Sometimes, the best way to reconnect is to disconnect. How is it that when you set out to leave t ...
Nor'wester Lodge & Canoe Outfitters has been one of the most unforgettable Northern Minnesota vacation spots for over 80 years. Located on the historic Gunflint Trail right on the shore of Poplar Lake, Nor'Wester Lodge & Canoe Outfitters is surrounded by the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) and Superior National Forest.
Nor'wester Lodge & Canoe Outfitters has been one of the most unforgettable Northern Minnesota va ...
The most memorable and successful wilderness trips begin at Seagull Outfitters near the end of the Gunflint Trail. We offer you decades of experience, unparalleled attention to detail, ultra-high quality gear, delicious food, vast knowledge of the area and world-class service. Turning first-time paddlers into repeat customers for more than 40 years. Complete deluxe outfitting Quality partial outfitting Boundary Waters and Quetico Park Trips Top-quality gear and food Lightweight Kevlar canoes Kayak and catamaran canoe rentals Day paddle trips to the Seagull Palisades Day trip motorboat rentals Launch, towing and shuttle service Expert fishing advice Private bunkhouse rooms Modern housekeeping cabins Gift shop, gear, fishing licenses, bait
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Wilderness seekers look no further, for admittance into all entry points along the Gunflint Trail, outfit with V.C.O. We are conveniently located with direct access into the renowned Saganaga Lake and Quetico Provincial Park. We combine extensive knowledge of the routes, fishing excellence, and a personable atmosphere to satisfy your expectations of the ideal wilderness getaway. Life is short. Come paddle with us for a guaranteed memorable, world class experience. 1-888-CANOEIT BWCA and Quetico trips Top of line equipment rentals Lightweight kevlar canoes and kayaks Day use and overnight motorboat rentals Expert fishing advice Trading post Private bunkhouses Private Cabins BWCA permit issuer and pickup station Day trips/rentals Public Showers Public Boat Launch
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As a full service, year-round, resort and outfitter we offer a wide range of equipment, bunkhouses, breakfast, showers, and six lakeside cabins. Tuscarora, Round Lake's only private property, is the perfect place to launch your next vacation whether you prefer deck chairs or canoe seats!
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Gunflint Outfitters- 85 years of creating canoe trip experiences in the BWCA and Quetico. Exclusive 'Camp Chow' foods made locally, plus rustic cabin rentals. Centrally located, with most BWCA entry points within 15 minutes of our base, Royalex and Kevlar canoes, full trip and route planning, overnight accommodations before and after your canoe trip, full meal service, rustic cabin vacations, BWCA permits, fishing licenses, and fishing tackle.
Gunflint Outfitters- 85 years of creating canoe trip experiences in the BWCA and Quetico. Exclusive ...
We are your Grand Marais outdoor adventure shop. Visit our store for guided tours, rentals, high quality gear and clothing. Tours: kayaking, paddle boarding, fly fishing, canoeing, ice fishing Rentals: canoes, kayaks, paddle boards, summer and winter camping, back-county and traditional xc skiing, and snowshoeing
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Hungry Jack Outfitters has gear for your Boundary Water Adventure and Accommodations for a comfortable rest; All infused with authentic Northwoods charm.
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