Pow Wow Trail

Isabella, Minnesota 55607

Pow Wow Trail

Pow Wow Trail Professional Review and Guide

"A long multi-day wilderness hike to remote rocky lakes. Hiking here is like going back in time to the stone age—at least that is the feeling I got hiking among the harsh bedrock lakes with intriguing names like Superstition and Rock of Ages. The Pow Wow Trail is a multi-day hike that reaches truly isolated lakes away from even the canoe routes.

The trail is difficult; it requires scrambling around rocks in places or traversing miles of soggy trails, across beaver dams and through thick alder groves. But if you go, you will be treated to special lakes that you have nearly all to yourself. Special attractions: remote bedrock lakes, beaver dams, and cascading creeks."

Pow Wow Trail Reviews

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A lot of this trail was damaged in a fire back in 2011 but some amazing volunteers have been working to clear it. Despite the fact some sections are still inaccessible, the sections you can hike that have been cleared are peaceful with few crowds. It's a great place to enjoy nature and get away from the world for a while.
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Our trip actually predated the Pagami Creek fire, so I can't vouch for the current state of the trail. I understand there are efforts underway to re-clear the trail, and I can't wait to tackle this trail again. While the eastern half of the Pow Wow is not particularly notable, the western half is some of the best hiking I've experienced in Minnesota. The remote lakes (read: no canoes) and the scrambling trail conditions are pretty magical and absolutely worth the effort to get there.
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The Pow Wow Trail was well maintained this time around. While I didn't get a chance to hike the entire trail, 9 miles along the south western part of the loop made for WhiskyTrek DeathMarch (18 miles, 6 hours, one flask!) The beaver damn crossings can get hairy, as can the bog walking. In May, moquitoes were not out yet but much of the trail was under water. This trail does give the sense of remoteness that one is looking for when heading into the BWCAW. Will update this trail review as time permits. Nodin, W-Trek Outfitters www.w-trek.com

Pow Wow Trail Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
100 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
2 days
Isabella Ranger District, Superior National Forest, 218-720-5324
Local Contacts
USGS quads: Isabella Lake, Quadga Lake, Snowbank Lake and Perent Lake for the east part; also maps by Fischer: F-4; and McKenzie: number 19.
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018