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Isle Royale National Park, MI

SOLD OUT! (Put me on the waiting list)

Jul 7 - Jul 15, 2020 -- $1400 ★★

Isle Royale National Park is one of the most beautiful and isolated ecosystems in the country. Situated in the middle Lake Superior, it is a several hour boat ride from Minnesota, Ontario or Michigan. Isle Royale boasts charismatic megafauna such as Moose, Wolves (only a few remain), Fox, Eagles, Osprey and the Red Squirrel.

There are swimming opportunities most days in either cold Lake Superior or in several warmer, inland lakes. Lake Superior is generally cold but tolerable on the warmest days.

Botanical bonus: We will be visiting Isle Royale during the wildflower season. Not to mention the abundance of tasty berries such as raspberries, blueberries, ubiquitous thimbleberries and the not-so-tasty serviceberries.

Our trek will begin in Grand Portage, MN where we board the Voyageur II for an unforgettable, most-of-the-day cruise in the largest freshwater lake in the world, Lake Superior. We'll start hiking at Rock Harbor on the far East portion of Isle Royale. Every day, we'll walk Westward on soaring ridges atop a geologic syncline (fold in rock layers) working our way towards Windigo almost 50 miles away, having traversed the entire island.

The extremely long days of Summer are prime time to visit the North Country. So why not join us to see a wonderful place, improve your fitness level and lose some fat?


Weather is always an important concern when hiking. Summer is the ideal time to hike on Isle Royale. In fact, July is the warmest month of the year in this region. Expect daytime hiking temperatures into the 70s and nighttime temperatures in the 50s. Remember too that weather along the coast can vary greatly from weather mid-island. Here are the historical weather averages Be prepared with lots of rain protection, bug protection and water containers that add up to 4 liters of capacity.

Trip Leaders

Steve Silberberg
Dan Shafto


$1400 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a room with another participant during the 2 hotel nights. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Duluth, MN (DLH), personal equipment, restaurant meals eaten off the trail and any gratuities for guides.

2020 only: There is a $160 surcharge for traveling by sea plane

Covered expenses include 2 hotel nights, 7 days of trail meals, ground transportation, ferry transport, park fees, permits and 2 awesome guides.


Although the trails are rugged in places, our hiking distances that are not overly aggressive, especially when considering that we'll have up to 15 hours of daylight this time of year. Elevation changes are fairly moderate as well, making this trip both fun and accessible.

Ruggedness of the trails are dependent upon how recently crews have maintained them. In 2012, the trails were free and clear so walking was unimpeded. In 2014, the trails were overgrown and made the trail much more difficult or at least frustrating in places.


Due to Covid-19 the ferries that service Isle Royale are closed for all of 2020. Instead, we will be arrivng and departing by Sea Plane out of Hancock, MI.

Here is an online map, of our route.

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Guides for this trip
Important Note
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Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Fly or drive into Duluth (DLH). The best time to arrive is between around 1-3PM but flight are limited, especially now.

Take free airport shuttle to La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Duluth, 1805 Maple Grove Rd, Duluth, MN 55811, 218-722-0700 where we will be set up in either a breakfast room or a conference room.

Equipment shakedown. We go through your pack and examine everything you brought, noting any items you may have omitted or forgotten

"Before" body composition measurements and temperatures taken

Go to the Trailfitters Store, 600 E Superior Street, Duluth, MN 55802, 218-722-6776 for forgotten and last minute equipment purchase if necessary. Store is open unitl 9PM.

Go out for (or takeout) a socially distanced welcome dinner (Cost of dinner not included in trip cost)

Stay at hotel

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Second set of "before" measurements taken

All the items that you won't bring on the trail will be set aside and put in storage, possibly a unit, possibly the hotel, possibly in shuttle vehicles.

Breakfast at Hotel or we may provide a Continental Breakfast(TBD)

Shuttle to Hancock, MI

IMPORTANT: Minnesota is in the Central Time Zone, Michigan (Isle Royale) is in the Eastern Time Zone. Your phone may pick up signals from towers in either time zone.

Board a sea plane for Rock Harbor. Note: Our group may be split over two or more flights a few hours apart

Begin Hiking at Rock Harbor, elevation 600' (Lake Superior is at 600' above Sea Level)

Hike 3.6 miles on the Rock Harbor Trail past a cave to Threemile Campsite

Camp at Threemile Campsite, Elevation 600'

Miles today: 3.6. Total miles: 3.6

Bailout: Rock Harbor

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Hike 4.2 miles on the Rock Harbor Trail past Siskowit Mine (1850s) to Daisy Farm Campsite

Set up camp here and stow packs in tents

Day-Hike 1.7 miles to the Mt. Ojibway Fire Tower, elevation 1133'. Nice view from the tower.

Day-Hike 1.7 miles back to Daisy Farm Campsite

Camp at Daisy Farm Campsite, elevation 600'

Miles today: 7.6. Total miles: 11.2

Possible bailout: Daisy Farm Dock

Friday, July 10, 2020

Hike 0.2 miles to the Daisy Farm Trail

Hike 1.7 miles on the Daisy Farm Trail to the Greenstone Ridge Trail, elevation 975'

Hike 5.8 miles on the Greenstone Ridge Trail to the Indian Portage Trail, elevation 825'

Hike 0.2 miles to West Chickenbone Lake Campsite

Camp at West Chickenbone Lake Campsite, elevation 675'

Miles today: 7.9. Total miles: 19.1

Possible bailout: McCargoe Cove Dock

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Hike 0.2 miles to Greenstone Ridge Trail, elevation 825'

Hike 7.7 miles on Greenstone Ridge Trail to Hatchet Lake Campsite

Camp at Hatchet Lake Campsite, elevation 725'

Miles today: 7.9. Total miles: 27.0

Possible bailout: Todd Harbor Dock

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Day-Hike 4.3 miles to Ishpeming Point Fire Tower, elevation 1377'

The view is disappointing here.

Day-Hike 3.8 miles to South Lake Desor Campsite

Camp at South Lake Desor Campsite, elevation 850'

Miles today: 8.1. Total miles: 35.1

Possible bailout: Todd Harbor Dock

Monday, July 13, 2020

Hike 11.3 miles to Washington Creek Campsite

Camp at Washington Creek Campsite, elevation 600'

Miles today: 11.3. Total miles: 46.4

Possible bailout: Windigo

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Optional Morning Day-Hike, TBD

Board a sea plane back to Hancock, MI. Our group may be split among times and planes.

Shuttle back to Duluth

Check into La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Duluth, 1805 Maple Grove Rd, Duluth, MN 55811, 218-722-0700 where we will be set up in either a breakfast room

After measurements taken

Dinner and awards Ceremony (Dinner cost not included in trip price)

This is the official end of the trip. You are welcome to spend the night at the hotel, however if you drove and would like to get on the road or if you flew and would like to schedule a late flight (or a red-eye if this is a West Coast trip) you can definitely do so.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Free breakfast in Hotel

Free Airport shuttle.

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