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Lady Chain Conquerors

7/26/19 – This past Saturday, two of our crew members took the day off and decided to conquer one of our 3-4 day routes in just one day! Mike and Nathan took the challenge of paddling the Lady Chain and were successful in completing it in about 9 hours and 20 minutes in our Wenonah Minnesota II canoe. They were able to do it in such a short amount of time by single portaging and bringing just a couple of day packs. Even with plans to complete it in a day, they still carried emergency equipment in case they had to stay overnight on a lake. The weather could not have been better for them, with slight winds and clouds turning into sunshine and tailwinds by the early afternoon. Mike got the chance to say hello to a group he sent out on Thursday as he passed them! Everyone enjoys their trips at different paces and this particular one was seen as more of a challenge than a vacation to Nathan and Mike. Though we wouldn’t recommend this speed to customers, those who decide to do something similar should be an experienced BWCA paddler and take the proper gear just in case.

The Lady Chain is one of Sawbill’s less frequented routes, being a point to point chain starting in Kawishiwi Lake. Most customers decide to start there and paddle through Lake Polly, Phoebe, Grace, Beth and Alton before arriving to Sawbill. This is a great straightforward route that can be fun for families or paddlers of all skill levels. With appropriate time allotted, there’s plenty of opportunity for exploring surrounding lakes and rivers along the route. There’s many campsites along the chain, so it tends to never be full or overcrowded. Fishers in particular enjoy this route. Polly, Phoebe and Grace lake are great for walleye, while Beth and Alton are filled with small mouth bass and sunfish. If you’d like to know more about this route, feel free to give us a call or ask a crew member for more information and suggestions. We’re more than happy to help!


Nathan along the Phoebe river.
Mike and Nathan navigating through Hazel Lake.