Best Canoe Routes
The canoe country wilderness of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and Quetico Provincial Park contains thousands of lakes set aside exclusively for paddling. Covering over a million and a half acres alone, the BWCAW has endless canoe routes in the paddle only paradise. With so many wilderness routes and entry points to choose from planning a route in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area or Quetico Park might seem a bit overwhelming. The good news is we’re here to help you plan the best route for your next BWCAW or Quetico wilderness canoe camping trip. Start by using our canoe route planner.

Planning a route in the BWCA or Quetico Park

It’s difficult to find a BWCAW route or Quetico entry point that a person wouldn’t like. To help our guests narrow down their trip options we ask them to choose which country they want to paddle and camp in. All of the BWCA Wilderness routes are located in Minnesota and all of the Quetico Park routes are in Canada. Once you know the answer to this question it will be much easier. Check out our suggested list of specific BWCA Wilderness canoe routes or Quetico Park canoe routes.

A canoe camping trip into the wilderness is a journey that isn’t about reaching a specific destination but more about the adventure itself. Similar to a book where you choose different actions for the characters that can alter the ending of the book each action in the wilderness can create a different experience.

You may know you want to take a wilderness canoe trip but you’re not sure of the exact route. Sometimes people look at maps and plan a 50 mile route only to enter the BWCAW through Saganaga Lake and stay base camped there for 5 nights because of the beautiful scenery or great fishing. This is fine just as is planning to set up a base camp and relax for a week but deciding on Day 2 of your wilderness trip you are restless and want to paddle, portage and camp in more lakes. You can decide once you’re out in the wilderness how much you want to travel, where you want to camp and what you want to do, it’s your canoe camping trip.

Boundary Waters canoe trip routes

It’s important to remember each individual who paddles the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is as unique as the lakes in the Boundary Waters themselves. The lakes come in different sizes, shapes and depths, they offer different types of fish, they are home to unique wildlife and can vary greatly in appearance due to the type and age of the forest that surrounds it. Each campsite is also unique and one that appeals to one canoe country paddler may not appeal to another. A steep drop off may look great for swimming and fishing to one person but to another it looks scary.

We know the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness routes and the routes in the Quetico Park. We’ve paddled and portaged the area and want you to have a great wilderness canoe trip. We’re located at the end of the Gunflint Trail and can outfit to all of the BWCAW entry points on the Gunflint Trail and many of the Quetico Park entry points. We can offer you the most advice about the Boundary Waters routes and Quetico routes on the Eastern edge of the BWCAW. 

We have a canoe trip route finder that can help you determine a route based upon what you want to do and see on your canoe camping trip. It allows you to enter the number of days of your trip, if you want to fish, how much you want to paddle and portage and then it will give you some route options. In addition to the trip route finder we have put together some route descriptions of our favorite routes. We invite you to spend time looking over our information online. If at any time you want to discuss the different options then please feel free to email or give us a call to chat about your BWCAW route or Quetico canoe camping trip.
trip planning for the BWCA

Voyageur's Guarantee

We promise to make your participation with Voyageur a success. Please let us know if any part of your experience, which was under our control, did not meet your satisfaction. We will make it right for you!