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Thread: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

  1. #36
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Hadfield View Post
    Nice!

    Let me know if you head over my way this summer.

    Dave
    Will do. Georgian Bay is a contender for an early(ish) summer trip for sure. I've never been there before July--what's the weather and bug situation in late May/June?

    Tom
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  2. #37
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Tom, I know you’ve moved from WI but after reading some of your threads and getting to this one, I wanted to ask if you knew what the rules were for camping on WI DNR land like this without established campsites? Most lakes around here are all private property shoreline so camping outside of state park campgrounds is probably out. But maybe if I head farther up north I can have some little sail and oar adventures of my own.

  3. #38
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by MattMKE View Post
    Tom, I know you’ve moved from WI but after reading some of your threads and getting to this one, I wanted to ask if you knew what the rules were for camping on WI DNR land like this without established campsites? Most lakes around here are all private property shoreline so camping outside of state park campgrounds is probably out. But maybe if I head farther up north I can have some little sail and oar adventures of my own.
    As far as I could tell, the DNR islands on the Gile Flowage are open to camping. I think I read that in a DNR pamphlet somewhere. No fees, no reservations. And no established campsites--very rustic. I slept on the boat, but you could find tent spots. I think it's pretty common to camp there. I generally assume that DNR land is open to camping, except in state natural areas where it's usually prohibited. I've never run into any trouble, but I keep a pretty low profile when boat camping.

    I do the same on my Upper Mississippi trips. If it looks iffy as far as permission goes, I'm always prepared to sleep aboard, which avoids the issue (at least technically).

    Other good Wisconsin options are the Willow Flowage and the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage. Both of these lake systems include many (dozens, really) of boat-in campsites, mostly on islands. And again, no fees, and (except for a handicapped-accessible site, and a couple of group sites) not reservable. You just show up and camp. There are picnic tables at most, firepits at all, and pit toilets (no walls/buildings, just a toilet box hidden in the woods near the campsite). Best not to go on a Friday evening or Saturday during high summer season, because outboard fishing boats can beat you to any campsite. But the Turtle-Flambeau is big, and I've never failed to find a campsite.

    Tom
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  4. #39
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Thank you! Turtle-Flambeau is definitely on my list of places to go. I spent many a summer vacation up there with family when I was younger — but my family tended towards water skiing on Lake Minocqua rather than canoeing or camping up in that direction.

  5. #40
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Quote Originally Posted by MattMKE View Post
    Thank you! Turtle-Flambeau is definitely on my list of places to go. I spent many a summer vacation up there with family when I was younger — but my family tended towards water skiing on Lake Minocqua rather than canoeing or camping up in that direction.
    The Turtle-Flambeau is the best I've found for sail and oar camp cruising in Wisconsin. By far, my favorite place to go. I usually make 2-3 trips up there every year. Perfect for a long weekend.

    Tom
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  6. #41
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    Default Re: A (Too?) Windy Sail & Oar Adventure in the North Woods

    Tom, as usually an excellent adventure followed up with even better writing!

    Have you ever been to Lake Vermillion in MN? I was looking at a map and it looks like great sailing. Parts of it are developed, but I'm not opposed to swinging by an occasional restaurant or shower during a trip

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