Saving the Pow Wow Trail

The Forest Service is considering closing the 30-mile Pow Wow Trail through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The trail is remote and little-used compared to the rest of the wilderness—according to an article on the Pioneer Press web site, it sees about 80 overnight permits per year.

The aftermath of the Pagami Creek Fire. Photo courtesy U.S. Forest Service.

The trail has been severely affected by the Pagami Creek Fire, and as the area regenerates, is expected to be overcome by bramble. It no longer has developed campsites because the Forest Service removed latrines and fire grates—the agency did not want to encourage campers to go to an area where fire-weakened trees could fall.

But one group of hikers, spearheaded by Martin Kubik of Vadnais Heights, MN, thinks the trail’s remoteness and lack of people are exactly what make it worthy of saving. He believes that closing the trail is the easy way out.

Kubik and a coalition of hiker’s groups are going to hike a portion of the Pow Wow Trail this Labor Day weekend to survey the trail and see how much work needs to be done to keep it clear. Outdoor writer Dave Orrick offers his perspective on their efforts in the Pioneer Press, and you can learn more about the Bring Back the Pow Wow Campaign HERE, on


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