You cannot enter the BWCA legally from anywhere else other than these official entry points. Many of the roads leading up to the entry points are forest roads of packed gravel; some are paved however. Many of the roads are dead ends. These portages can be trivial to really long. You must have a permit from the U. Also, you must enter at one of these entry points.
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The choice of which to use is generally up to personal preference. The maps have different scales, colors, materials, and coverage areas. They are characteristically yellow and blue. The scale of the maps is 1. Voyageur maps are popular with anglers because the maps contain fishing information. Voyageur maps have lake depth contours for pretty much all lakes that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has surveyed.
Voyageur also prints on each map a listing of the relative abundance and size of fish species found in the lakes on the map covered. In addition, the maps also have historical, geological, and other information about the area, which makes for some interesting reading in camp.
You can browse the entire set of Voyageur maps on their website , a feature that is very useful. What really sets True North maps apart from others is what it is printed on - cloth!
As they say, the maps can be "worn, stuffed, washed, written on and used over and over again. Because of this, McKenzie maps generally have more detail than the other maps. However, this also means that each map covers less area, so you would need to buy more maps to cover the same area.
The maps are printed on both sides, thereby saving room for example, the entire Boundary Waters fits on two double-sided maps. The scale of the maps is generally too small to navigate with. The Boundary Waters is about.
Because the scale is smaller, it shows less detail than any of the other maps, and it is recommended to bring other maps to navigate. However, they are good for getting the big picture of a trip or as a backup map. They are also great to hang on a wall. It is sold at all entry stations. However, it is a much smaller scale than the other maps - approximately one half inch to the mile , Many people opt to carry this map and a map with a larger scale for the greater detail.
The Algonquin maps have a scale of , This is a much smaller scale than most other canoeing maps. However, this is generally sufficient in Algonquin because campsites and portages are signed, so they are easier to find than in other wilderness areas.
The maps have not only lakes, campsites, and portages, but they also include historical and geographical tidbits. The maps also have directly printed on them distances from lake to lake and estimated paddling times.
Interactive Maps with Route Calculators
Listings of BWCA Maps