I think I have gotten past my primary barrier to a solo trip, my wife. She's pretty sure I wouldn't survive. So I've upped my life insurance and I going next spring. For those of you who have done a solo, any tips, routes, suggestions, etc. Thanks
The solo tripping forum is a good place to start. There have been numerous threads in this topic in various forums. I know you've done a lot of BW trips, but it would be good to know your solo experience - ever paddle a solo canoe? backpack solo? camp solo? day hike solo? Overnight? 3 days? a week?
The more solo experiences you have, the more you'll already know and be comfortable with being alone in the wilderness. If you haven't done many things alone, you may want to ease into it. What are your preliminary thoughts for your first solo?
Generally speaking, it's more work: the loads are heavier (if you're not sure why, ask), you travel a little slower, there's more work, i.e. there's no one to set up the tent while you filter water, etc. It's also an individual thing - your trip - and some people like to basecamp, others like to travel every day, some all day, some a few hours. So what are you looking for in your solo?
Thanks guys.... I should have dug around a bit more. I'll check it out. Boonie, I've canoed and camped since I was a kid, most of the time with others. I've wanted to solo for years, but a no-go with the wife. I'm pretty sure I'm over that hurdle and pretty psyched thinking about it....
quote Woodtick: "I've only done one solo; but I've found that I need long days of paddling otherwise I just get bored at camp with too much time and no one to talk to. I'd highly recommend moving camp each day."
Yes...moving everyday is a must, if you can. Watch the wind, and don't take unnecessary chances. I like to pick routes with smaller lakes, do a loop if you can. Take your time while traveling, and smell the roses.
"I am haunted by waters"~Norman Maclean "A River Runs Through It"
Routes you might consider, little indian sioux is popular amongst solo paddlers and the lizz/swamp or meeds entry would make a great intro solo route. Small lakes, easy portages, nice camps, lot to explore.
Richard "Bear" Brown-----
"I would rather give someone one photograph they can't live without than one hundred they can live with." anonymous
Be very conscious of the weight you carry. Try to go light with the food. There's some really tasty freeze dried meals out there. Be safe and always trust your gut. If you think it's risky then don't do it. Keep your eyes glued to the ground and watch your footing. A broken ankle would be no fun.
Welcome aboard the solo game! I have only been canoeing the North Country since 2009. Did my first solo in 2010. It was fatastic!!! I watched every step on the portage, calculating the moves...as did not want to get hurt. I have a lot of camping experience and outdoor, just not canoeing, so knew I could do it. Also I took topo maps, as well as regular maps, and gps and compass. So I had a good refrence for not getting lost. see you in the solo forum for more great information. Take care and be safe. SunCatcher
Dad Always said "We don't Always catch fish...but we ALWAYS have a good time"
I'd also recommend staying on smaller lakes....I've done a few solos now, and I always worry about crossing bigger water alone, especially if the water's at all chilly. My first solo was on small lakes for that very reason, and I'm very glad that's how I did it.
And about the boredom: Maybe it's because I'm an English teacher and love reading, but a good book will go a LONG ways to helping allay any boredom you might feel. I've never once been bored in the BWCA--even on solo days when I'm wind-blown--but I also carry a couple of books to help keep those doldrums at bay. That obviously may not be your thing, but there are some really good books about the wilderness/canoeing/adventure that work well while on trail. Just my .02.
Whether you travel a lot or base camp is really more your personal style. I like to travel but find a good lake with some nice day trips and lay over there to relax, perhaps hike a bit, etc. Again the exact format of the trip needs to be you and because you will keep reading here and have the winter to plan you will be in great shape and have a memory you will cherish for life.