Kawasachong Lake
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Nearest Entry Point: Kawishiwi Lake #37 Fishing: MN DNR Fish Survey; Northern Pike, Walleye, Rock Bass
Maps: Fisher F-5; McKenzie #20 Lake Depth: MN DNR Lake Map; 11 feet
Fire History: 2011, 1875 and 1863-64
Lake Size: 200 acres
Campsites: 4; however 2011 Pagami Creek Fire damaged all of them and many may be closed by the U.S. Forest Service Wildlife Seen on Visit: Waterfowl (ducks)
Last Visited: May 25, 2015 Lake Elevation: 1639 feet
Water Clarity: MN DNR Routes from Kawasachong Lake:
To Townline Lake: Walk the 189 rod portage
To Kawishiwi River (between Square Lake and Kawasachong Lake): Walk the 5 rod portage and the 20 rod portage along this stretch

Kawasachong Lake

Tofte Ranger District

This lake is quite shallow with a maximum depth of 11 feet. The Kawishiwi River flows through this lake. The Kawishiwi River enters along the west shore and then exits out the west shoreline about one-third mile to the north on the otherside of a prominent point on that shoreline. From Kawasachong, you stop following the Kawishiwi River and portage generally overland through Townline Lake to the north to reach Lake Polly. At Lake Polly, you once again begin to follow the Kawishiwi River if you are continuing north to Koma Lake.

The entire lakes shoreline, including the islands, have been completely torched by the 2011 Pagami Creek Fire. For this reason, don't plan to camp here. Many of the campsites are probably closed. It will take a decade or more for a good recovery of the area to take hold.

The walleye fishing in Kawasachong Lake is reported to be good. The north bay where you find the portage up to Townline Lake is very shallow (less than 5 feet).

The portage leading north out of Kawasachong Lake is a long one to Townline Lake. From Kawasachong Lake, the portage slopes gently upwards and then levels out as it travels through forest completely burned out by the fire. As the portage approaches Townline Lake, the portage descends steeply to the lake. There are a few muddy sections along this portage which portage crews have attempted to mitigate with some success with boards and well placed logs and rocks.

Heading to Square Lake from Kawasachong involves paddling upstream along the Kawishiwi River. There is relatively little current. There are two small portages between Kawasachong and Square Lake. There was also one beaver dam liftover when this area was last visited. Also, there is a narrow section just west of Kawasachong Lake that requires some good steering of your canoe through a tight but short boulder strewn channel where the current picks up a bit. The 5 rod portage is just after you turn right heading toward Square Lake. If you stayed left here, you would enter another creek that leads out toward Short Lake and Watonwan Lake to the southeast. The 5 rod portage is around a tiny waterfall. There is good fishing here; you will sometimes see many fish surfacing just below the little waterfall. This is also a good place to see eagles. The 20 rod portage that leads into Square Lake is somewhat option. It is possible to bypass it staying right. You may have to liftover a beaver dam though if you elect to skip the portage.

Exploring Kawasachong Lake

After entering Kawasachong Lake from the Kawishiwi River, you continue to paddle along the lakes western shoreline, heading generally north.

Kawasachong Lake in the BWCA
Paddling along the western shoreline of Kawasachong Lake.

Kawasachong Lake BWCA
Peering east while paddling along the western shoreline of Kawasachong Lake. This island failed to escape the fire.

Kawasachong Lake Boundary Waters
The fallen pine tree marks the location where the Kawishiwi River flows out of Kawasachong Lake along the west shoreline. The river is quite wide where it makes its exit.

Paddle into the north bay of Kawasachong Lake, along the bays eastern shoreline, and approach the portage landing that has the trail leading north to Townline Lake.

Kawasachong Lake Boundary Waters Canoe Area
Standing at the start of the portage of 189 rods, you take one last look at Kawasachong Lake before turning around and heading north to Townline Lake. The view here encompasses the entire north bay of Kawasachong Lake.

Route Connections for Kawasachong Lake

From Kawasachong Lake, you can portage to Townline Lake. You can also paddle into the Kawishiwi River which passes through Kawasachong Lake.

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