Podcast by WTIP North Shore Community Radio
Short Track: Bears In The BWCA Summer 2021
Recent encounters between black bears and visitors to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness has the U.S. Forest Service considering a food storage order on certain lakes.
If implemented, the order would aim to reduce the likelihood of negative encounters between BWCA visitors and bears, according to Superior National Forest spokesperson Joanna Gilkeson. The Forest Service enacted a food storage order for a collection of lakes at the end of the Gunflint Trail in 2020 due to bear activity.
The WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast was informed in recent weeks of multiple incidents involving canoe campers and bears in the BWCA. During one incident from July 15 on Duncan Lake in the Middle Gunflint Trail area, four bears aggressively pursued a hanging food pack at a campsite. According to reports, the bears, a sow, yearling and two cubs, would not flee even when whistles were blown and pots and pans were banged together. Additional reports of bear encounters surfaced days later on nearby Rose Lake.
Podcast host Joe Friedrichs spoke with Chris Vincent from St. Francis, Minn., about his experience with several bears on Rose Lake from July 17. This short track shares Chris’s story.
Episode 45 WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast
In wilderness settings, there are connections people can make to the land, regardless of their age, race or gender, by walking in the footsteps of those who have come before them.
With this in mind, a group of Minnesota paddlers set out in the fall of 2020 to travel across the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness to retrace the steps of a wilderness pioneer named Arthur Carhart.
Their journey took them across abandoned portages, streams plugged by beaver dams and through remote territory inside the nation’s most visited wilderness area.
Carhart made his journey to the Boundary Waters in 1921. Though a century has passed since his expedition, there were generations of people who lived in this landscape that is now defined as a ‘wilderness area.’ The Indigenous communities were here long before white voyageurs and government officials put their canoes on this countless collection of lakes, streams and pathways through the Boundary Waters.
In this episode of the WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast, hosts Matthew Baxley and Joe Friedrichs revisit the notion of ‘what defines wilderness?’
In another follow up to recent podcast coverage, Minnesotan Alex Falconer shares an update with podcast contributor Lindsey Gau about his epic trail run from May 2021. Alex ran the entire Border Route Trail and the Kekekabic Trail in about two days, a distance of nearly 110 miles.
Alex did this run of epic proportions to raise awareness for the Boundary Waters and to protect clean water.
Photo for this episode provided by Mark Morgen. Thanks to KFAI Radio and the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund for making this episode possible.
Episode 44 WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast
Join the WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast team for a one-time special from Isle Royale National Park on the biggest boundary waters lake of them all: Lake Superior.
Hosts Matthew Baxley and Joe Friedrichs traveled to Isle Royale in June 2021 to share stories from the remote island archipelago. They talked with park staff about wildlife research being conducted on the island, chatted with visiting hikers, paddled a canoe through a winding harbor and saw 18 moose over the course of five days.
The stories of their adventures, and those of their fellow travelers and park staff, are all shared in this special episode of the podcast.
Episode 43 WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast
It’s back to hammocks on this episode of the WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast.
Well, sort of…
The featured guest on this episode of the podcast is YouTube sensation and hammock camping extraordinaire Sean 'Shug' Emery. Shug lives in Minnesota and frequents the North Shore and BWCA to enjoy time hiking, exploring and hanging in his hammock.
In a previous stage of his life, Shug was a circus performer and clown. He’s well known at the Minnesota State Fair and has entertained across the state at various venues, including the Grand Marais Public Library.
Shug has a following of more than 100,000 subscribers who engage with his discussions about hammock camping. That being the case, while speaking with host Joe Friedrichs on this episode of the podcast, the topic of hammock camping did not surface one time. Instead, they talked about equity, diversity in the wilderness, advocacy and other topics that have nothing to do with hammock camping whatsoever. During the discussion, both the host and the guest let their guards down and got… real.
Episode 42 WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast
The combined distance of the Border Route Trail and the Kekekabic Trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is approximately 110 miles.
In late May 2021, Minnesotan Alex Falconer ran the entire distance. In two days. Basically nonstop.
Alex did this run of epic proportions to raise awareness for the Boundary Waters and to protect clean water. Joining Alex for a portion of the run and for an interview on the podcast is Clare Gallagher, an American ultrarunner and environmental advocate who lives in Boulder, Colorado. Also featured on the podcast is another runner who participated in the event, Peyton Thomas. Peyton, who is from the East Coast, participated in multiple sections of the run with Alex.
Podcast contributor Lindsey Gau paddled out to record interviews near Clearwater Lake in the BWCA and shares a full report in this episode.
Episode 41 WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast
The WTIP Boundary Waters Podcast team spent the final days of April and start of May 2021 in Ely. Hosts Matthew Baxley and Joe Friedrichs were selected for an 'artist residency' by the Listening Point Foundation.
This is property owned by Sigurd Olson that is now managed and owned by an organization in Ely known as the Listening Point Foundation. Olson was an author and a dedicated advocate for wilderness, including the Boundary Waters, but many areas across the country as well.
The podcast duo recorded and produced this episode at Listening Point. The theme of the episode is 'a rite of passage' and includes interviews with paddlers sharing their love of the Boundary Waters with their children, friends and the next generation of canoeists, and where Baxley and Friedrichs fit within that concept of people who share stories about the wilderness.
Up first we hear the story of Myron Klesner. Myron was introduced to Quetico Provincial Park in 1977 during a class trip. It was the first of 30 years of trips taken from Quincy Jr. High (Illinois) to Canoe Canada Outfitters and into Quetico. Myron continues to visit canoe country and he has now gone with his two boys, the history teacher who started the school trips and others who have experienced Quetico over the years.
In part two of this episode, Cook County resident Hazel Oberholtzer talks about ‘her soul place,’ the Boundary Waters. Hazel frequents the BWCA and talks about her own rite of passage to wilderness travel, from camps to family trips to now paddling with her friends through canoe country. Hazel talks about the value of gaining self-awareness on trips to the Boundary Waters, learning from her mentors about strength and leadership both inside and outside of the wilderness.
The episode is shared through the lens of Listening Point and the work of Sigurd Olson to protect the Boundary Waters region, with the full understanding that the torch needs to be carried from generation to generation to protect these treasured waters.
If you love canoeing, skiing, or hiking the Boundary Waters, this is the podcast for you! Absolutely one of my favorite podcasts. I look forward to this showing up in my app every month. Great content, interviews, personalities, and helpful insight. Great work!
Good podcast for catching up on sleep.
Meh. Kind of a snoozer BWCA podcast. Wake me when it’s over.
The BWCA is my Favorite place. I enjoy the discussions and look forward to the podcasts