Lake One
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Nearest Entry Point: Lake One #30 Lake One Fishing: MN DNR Fish Survey; Northern Pike, Bluegill, Rock Bass, Walleye, Smallmouth Bass
Maps: Fisher F-4, F-10, F-31 Special; McKenzie #18 Lake Depth: MN DNR Lake Map; 57 feet
Fire History: 2011 and 1894
Lake Size: 814 acres
Campsites: 14 (13 visited) Wildlife Seen on Visit: Bald Eagles, Loons, Waterfowl, Turkey Vultures
Last Visited: September 4, 2021
Previous Visit(s): June 14, 2021, April 29, 2021, July 3, 2015
Lake Elevation: 1467 feet
Water Clarity: MN DNR ROUTES/PORTAGES FROM LAKE ONE:
To Kawishiwi River (downstream): Walk the 20 rod portage
To Lake Two: Walk the 27 rod portage and the 38 rod portage
To Confusion Lake: Walk the 44 rod portage
To Pagami Creek: Paddle In
To Carefree Lake: Bushwhack for about 80 rods

Lake One

Kawishiwi Ranger District

LAKE ONE CAMPSITES:
Campsite 1 (#2302): Located along the north shoreline of the large northeastern bay.
Campsite 2 (#1675): South shore just east of channel separating the lakes two halves
Campsite 3 (#1673): Near mid-lake in middle of point that extends east from north shore
Campsite 4 (#1672): Near mid-lake at west end of point that extends east from north shore
Campsite 5 (#1677): On south side of point located on east shoreline in south part of lake
Campsite 6 (#1676): Middle of three campsites on east shore in south part of lake
Campsite 7 (#1674): North most of three campsites on east shore in south part of lake
Campsite 8 (#1678): West end of large island in southern part of lake
Campsite 9 (#1671): Just east of the Confusion Lake portage
Campsite 10 (#1670): Just west of the Confusion Lake portage
Campsite 11 (#2303): Next to rapids flowing in from Lake Two
Campsite 12 (#1147): Second campsite west of Confusion Lake portage
Campsite 13 (#1146): West most campsite on the lake
Campsite 14 (#2219): On island southeast of Confusion Lake portage

You won't find solitude on this lake unless you come here in the off season. Lake One is one of the busiest entry points into the BWCA.

This lake is a reservoir of the Kawishiwi River as a result of two dams that control water into and out of the lake. These are the Lake No.1 Dam and Lake No. 2 Dam.

The lake is not known for particularly good fishing, but it does contain walleye and northern pike. It receives quite a bit of fishing pressure. Try fishing where the water is moving (i.e., below the dams).

The Kawishiwi Lodge is on the north end of the lake and you will paddle right by it when heading into Lake One from BWCA Entry Point 30, unless you head straight west from the landing down the Kawishiwi River.

Lake One is a confusing lake for many paddlers. See the BWCA Entry Point 30 web page on this site for a discussion of why this lake is so easy for visitors to get turned around on.

If you are looking to quickly find some quiet waters, try paddling up Pagami Creek on the western end of Lake One. This is a long, easily navigable creek (assuming water levels aren't really low), that leads back into the Weasel Lake Primitive Management Area. There is a good chance of seeing some wildlife back in this area. Pagami Lake is definitely worth a visit and lies about two miles up the creek. Note, that you cannot camp within a Primitive Management Area unless you have a secondary permit. These permits are free and can be requested from the forest ranger when you pick up your regular permit. See this page for rules on visiting PMAs. Pagami Creek and Pagami Lake make a good day trip from a Lake One base camp.

Only the south shore of Lake One was impacted by the 2011 Pagami Creek Fire.

Exploring Lake One

Routes to locations on Lake One are shown below:
Paddling from the BWCA Entry Point 30 canoe landing to Kawishiwi Lodge and Outfitters dock
Paddling from Kawishiwi Lodge and Outfitters dock to BWCA Campsite 2302
Paddling from BWCA Campsite 2302 to BWCA Campsite 1675
Paddling from BWCA Campsite 1675 to the Lake Two portage
Paddling from the Confusion Lake portage to the mouth of Pagami Creek

Click on the photos below to see the full resolution image - Use your browsers back button to close photo and return to this page.

PADDLING FROM THE BWCA ENTRY POINT 30 CANOE LANDING TO KAWISHIWI LODGE AND OUTFITTERS DOCK

Lake One 1
View of Lake One from the BWCA Entry Point 30 landing. If you are heading to Lake Two, the easiest route has you paddling to the left from here. It is possible to go to the right, but you will have to portage several times along the Kawishiwi River before entering Lake One again.



Starting at the nice sandy beach landing at BWCA Entry Point 30, head off to the east. Paddle through a narrow gap and then generally head toward the right (east). You are looking for the very narrow channel that leads to the Kawishiwi Lodge and Outfitters dock. This skinny channel can be difficult to locate. Once in the channel, continue paddling (now heading northeast) until reaching the lodge. There is a dock and many cabins in this area. You don't officially enter the Boundary Waters Canoe Area until you pass this area.


Lake One 2
Just as you exit the narrow channel and pass the lodge's dock, to your left are the legions of canoes stacked and ready to go at the Kawishiwi Lodge and Outfitters establishment.
Explore Another Route
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PADDLING FROM KAWISHIWI LODGE AND OUTFITTERS DOCK TO BWCA CAMPSITE 2302

Lake One 3
About a half mile south of Kawishiwi Lodge and Outfitters, the long channel comes to an end and the lake starts to open up.



Push off from the dock and paddle to the southwest down the long, narrow northeast channel of Lake One. When you reach the main part of the lake, hook a left and continue along the shoreline to the east until reaching the campsite.
Visit the Campsite -or- Explore Another Route
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PADDLING FROM BWCA CAMPSITE 2302 TO BWCA CAMPSITE 1675

Lake One 12
View to the southwest before heading out from Campsite 2302.


Lake One 7
View to the southwest from a location south of the Confusion Lake portage across an open part of the lake. The islands to the right side of your view are the ones a short ways to the northeast of the mouth of Pagami Creek.



Paddling between the two campsites in the eastern bay of Lake One. Campsite 2302 is along the north shoreline and Campsite 1675 is along the south shoreline. From Campsite 2302, paddle east farther back into the bay, then turn right and paddle south across the lake to the southern shoreline. From there, paddle west to within sight of the rapids formed by where the Kawishiwi River flows into Lake One. There is another campsite next to the rapids, but not visited because it was already occupied. Finally paddle back to the east along the south shore until reaching Campsite 1675.


Lake One 13
Looking toward the southwest after arriving at Campsite 1675.
Visit the Campsite -or- Explore Another Route
***********************************************END OF ROUTE***********************************************


PADDLING FROM BWCA CAMPSITE 1675 TO THE LAKE TWO PORTAGE

Lake One 14
Northwest view from Campsite 1675.



Lake One map1Paddling south through Rib Lake from the Cross Bay Lake portage at the north end of the lake, to the sole campsite on Rib Lake along its eastern shoreline.



Lake One 8
There were massive forest fires up in western Canada and the smoke from those fires was leaving a prominent haze in the atmosphere over the BWCA. Here you are looking out at Lake One from the start of the first of two portages to Lake Two.
Portage to Lake Two -or- Explore Another Route
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PADDLING FROM THE CONFUSION LAKE PORTAGE TO THE MOUTH OF PAGAMI CREEK


Paddling across Lake One from the Confusion Lake portage to the mouth of Pagami Creek. Pagami Creek leads into the Weasel Lake Primitive Management Area.


Lake One 11
Looking to the east/northeast at Lake One from near the mouth of Pagami Creek.
Paddle Pagami Creek -or- Explore Another Route
***********************************************END OF ROUTE***********************************************

Route Connections for Lake One

From Lake One, you can portage to Confusion Lake, Lake Two or the Kawishiwi River. You can also bushwhack into Carefree Lake or paddle into Pagami Creek (both within the Weasel Lake Primitive Management Area). Lake One also provides access to the BWCA for Entry Point 30 - Lake One.

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PMA #1: Weeny PMA #4: Tick PMA #7: Pitfall PMA #10: Hairy
PMA #2: Canthook PMA #5: Spider PMA #8: Mugwump PMA #11: Weasel
PMA #3: Sundial PMA #6: Drag PMA #9: Humpback PMA #12: Fungus
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