Venturing out in the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area (BWCA) wilderness in northern Minnesota is a fun and exciting prospect. Your first Boundary Waters trip to see the beauty of the lakes and portaging around waterfalls is something to experience. However, BWCA isn’t Disney World. It takes careful preparation, meal planning, and know-how to have a great canoe trip in the wilderness of northern Minnesota and Canada. We found these five canoeing skill videos that offer tips, experiences, and, most importantly, the outdoor skills that you should know about before you venture out.
We hope you will spend a few minutes reviewing each video and taking notes. It may be helpful to bookmark this page so you can view the videos later. If you are planning a group trip, share it with your friends to be on the same page.
#5 BWCA 5 Things to know Pre-Trip
Our first canoeing skill vidoe is from Jodi Middendorf. Jodi is a photographer, wilderness guide, and blogger. She gives a quick rundown on permits, black bears, how to spot wildlife, why you wear a PFD all the time, and what to expect out in the BWCA. It is worth viewing as a quick recap of things to know before you go to BWCA.
Jodi also produced a short video on the ins and outs of BWCAs campsite latrines or “grumpers.” Best tip, don’t throw food in the grumper because you don’t want to be visited by a hungry “Poo Bear.”
#4 25 Tips for a Better Boundary Waters Canoe Trip
This video is jam-packed with advice from a seasoned paddler. Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness Communications Director Pete Marshall discusses 25 recommendations for a better Boundary Waters canoe trip. He reviews everything from the proper paddling techniques to use to why peanut butter should be part of your pack.
One unique aspect is that this video has a free e-book, Friends’ Guide to the BWCA, accompanying the video and providing the viewer with a handy reference guide.
#3 – 10 Tips for a More Comfortable Boundary Waters Experience
Among all canoeing skill videos, this one is meant for novice paddlers to BWCA. However, even veteran canoeists will find this an insightful, entertaining bit of backwoods advice. He outlines best practices and tips from using a Kevlar canoe to why you may want to consider an alternative to hanging your food bags. Bonus…read the comments! JDs viewers have some great tips that are worth scrolling through.
JDs channel, Technically Rugged, is worth checking out with tons of exciting video clips that include everything from ice fishing videos to gear reviews.
#2 – Canoe Trip Gear BWCA | Boundary Waters Packing
Here is another excellent video from Jodi Middendorf that covers some excellent tips on packing methods for BWCA trips. She quickly reviews what gear to pack and what to leave behind. She also gives advice on where to shop for lightly used equipment to save money.
#1 – Canoe Tripping Gear I Never Leave at Home
Ken Whiting, a world Champion kayaker, author, and host of the Facing Waves TV series, produces canoeing skill videos. He covers fire starters, campsite gear like folding saws, and even having backup toilet paper. While not specific for Boundary Waters, it does cover some essential equipment to include to ensure that you have it for any wilderness adventure.
Closing Thoughts on Your First Boundary Waters Trip
Planning your BWCA trip, deciding the route to take, gear, and food to use is all part of your adventure. These videos will serve to act as thought starters and give you knowledge skills from some experienced paddlers. If you have a video that should appear on this list that covers some essential equipment, we would appreciate knowing about it.
Related Reading About Canoeing Skill Videos and Boundary Waters
7 Methods To Consider In Your Outdoor Water Filter – Feeling confident that you can dunk your water bottle into your water source is a unique spot to be in. I only do it here and there in the Boundary Waters. Everywhere else, it’s good to have an outdoor water filter. Here are the types and methods I have tried with pros and cons for each.
Wicked Lighting – Storm Season and Boundary Waters Camping – Boundary Waters camping during the typical “storm season” in July takes some forethought on setting up your camp in case of a severe storm rolling through. Here is one story of a wicked storm in BWCA.
40 Essential Items To Make Your Own Wilderness First Aid Kit – This list of essential items to consider when packing your own wilderness First Aid Kit.
Boundary Waters Planning – When should I go? – When planning a trip there are a number of factors to account for here is a shortlist of things to consider when beginning to plan for a trip in the BWCA.