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Trip Prep

Trip Preparation

Book your Trip

Contact Wilderness Journey to discuss dates, rates and routes according to your group’s wishes.  Trip dates will be booked with guides on a first-come first-serve basis.   It is important to book early as the Superior National Forest only allows a limited number of people in each entry point per day.  Entry points will be established in accordance to the guide permits issued by the Superior National Forestry office.

Groups/individuals are required to pay half (50%) of the total amount due as a deposit to book a trip.  The remainder is due on or before 2 WEEKS prior to the trip.  Groups should assign one leader to collect the payment due from all members and issue one payment. Wilderness Journey accepts cash, check, Visa and MasterCard.


Each person will need to get a Minnesota 7-day fishing license for $38.00.  (price may vary year to year)

We suggest you get your fishing license on-line – Fishing License

DNR required to collect SSN: The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is required to collect your social security number (SSN) as part of an application for a non-commercial hunting or fishing license.

BWCA Permits…First-Come First-Serve

Permit fees are not included in the cost of the trip. the Superior National Forest will not let guides or outfitters buy permits. we will  be more than happy to help clients apply for the permits.  We will handle permits when we discuss the trip dates and routes and as soon as a deposit is received.   Superior National Forest only allows a limited number of people in each entry point per day.  So if you are considering a trip, contact us ASAP so that we can discuss trip options.  permits go on sale January 25th on a first come first serve basis. the SNF will send you a permit confirmation within 1/2 an hour of ordering your permit, this is your permit confirmation you will need to make a copy and bring it to Ely with you and then we can obtain your permit.

We will be there with you to pick up your permit when you arrive to Ely.


As a part of the package and to prepare for the trip, Wilderness Journey will host a clinic we will provide refreshments and some munchies, at Island Lake Recreation Center in southeast Michigan.  We will have the canoes and equipment showing the camp setup.  We will talk about what to bring (and what not to bring).  We will review basic paddling skills and maps to see the different routes. This will take place in May- details to follow.

This clinic will greatly enhance your trip

Hotel/ Cabin

We suggest you get a good night’s rest the night before we start our journey .  We have recommendations for where to stay.  Book your room/cabin before arriving to Ely.

Hotels in Ely  I suggest the Super 8 (its clean and economical)

For those that want something a little upscale I suggest the Grand Ely Lodge or Burntside lodge.

Get to Ely…

When you get to Ely, call us.  We will usually meet the day before a trip to get last minute items and pick up permits. The morning of departure, your guide will pick you up at the cabin/hotel or we will meet at a local outfitter (very early!).  We will have special arrangements for you to leave your vehicle in secure parking.  We will provide transportation to the entry point.

Here is a link to the Ely Chamber of commerce

Special arrangements for clients taking a tow boat trip.

If you fly, we can pick up/drop off to and from Duluth airport for $120.00 on way or $240 round trip.

What to Bring with you…

Wilderness Journey will supply all of the equipment, all of the food and a guide.  You will need to bring your clothing, personal items and fishing gear.  Stay strict to this list:

Clothes In the Daypack Fishing Equipment
Hat and Belt
One Sweater (sweatshirt)
Three T-shirts
Two pair of socks (all my socks are smartwool socks- they are the best!)
One pair of wool socks (smart wool)
Two pair of loose light pants (zip offs)
Shorts unless you have zip offs
Camp shoes (old gym shoes)
Boots (waterproof) or Keene sandals
Three pair underwear
Towel (medium size or small- preferably a pack towel)
One pair long johns (upper and lower)
1 light jacket (fleece)This list includes the clothing you will be wearing on the way into the BWCA.  Put the rest of the clothing in a garbage bag and I will place it into a waterproof pack.  (This list will vary slightly according to the length of your trip.)
Bug juice
Leatherman / Knife
Flashlight (small) or headlamp
1 or 2 – Water Bottles with twist on tops
Rain gear (not a poncho!)
Sun Block
Map case or heavy-duty zip lock
Film / Memory card
Brush / Comb
Biodegradable soap
Pencil and paper
Fishing license
2 Tackle box (small and flat) 2” by 10” by 12”
Good long Stringer
2  Med weight rods with 8 lb line (2 piece) you can bring one extra rod each just in case you break one.
Extra line
Needle nose pliers or leatherman
6” steel leaders
Small to med snap swivels
Lead head jigs 1/16 to 1/8 oz
2” – 3” Twister tails (white, chartreuse, orange and green)
Small tube jigs
#J-9 and #J -11 Rapalas (fire tiger, perch, blue & white, black & gold)
Daredevils (red& white, black & white)
Popr’s (bone / white)
Beetle spins
Inline spinners
Slip bobbers
Bobber stops
Split shots
6# and 4# hooks
(These are just some of the local favorites)

Please feel free to contact us with any questions.


See our newsletters complete with trip reports and photo slideshows as well as testimonials from our clients for more information.  Contact us to be added to our email list for event reminders.

One Response to Trip Prep

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