Forest Service Launches BWCAW Reservation Site, Permits Going Fast

Updated: March 04, 2019 07:36 PM

The new system to make online permit reservations for Boundary Water Canoe Area travelers is finally up and running successfully. The U.S. Forest Service re-launched the system early Monday morning, and the permits have been going fast.


The site went live at 9 a.m. Superior National Forest officials say as of 3 p.m., Monday at least 8,500 reservations have been made.

"I got logged in before it was up and running at like 8:30 a.m.," said James Iammatteo.

30 minutes before the 9 a.m. launch time, the Keewatin Native was able to get his online permit reservation, as the site went live in a second attempt.

"I'm going in before fishing season so I think it's alittle easier for me to get in maybe some of the other people going in at the Opener or after maybe they saw something different," he said.

Other than the site being slow, his expereince was pretty smooth.

"I think it was overloaded, with a lot of people on there this morning," he added. "I'm lucky. I got what i wnated. If I didnt get what I wanted I'd be thinking go to the lottery system, but it is nice that it shows you how many slots are available." 

Superior National Forest Supervisor, Connie Cummins says they were happy with a successful launch this time around after the website crashed the first time.

"There were some issues that we found with the cache system and those have been fixed," said Cummins.

Cummins says with this second launch, there were a few glitches but their Technical team fixed them immediately and says they've been working closely with the team prior to make sure another crash didn't happen. 

"We have made at least over 8,500 reservations so far and people are still making reservations," said Cummins.

She says they are pleased with the first-come, first-serve system that she says they've been using for years. 

"The lottery was overlaid on top of that, on five entry points out of over 70 entry points so it's a small area that the lottery was currently in place," explained Cummins.

As for reservations, the higher demand entry points have been going a lot faster. 

"They are divided up. Some of them are overnight paddle permits, and some are day-use motor permits so it depends on your mode of travel and what enrty points are the most popular," said Cummins.

Her advice, if you didn't get your desired entry point is don't give up.

"There's over a million acres in th BWCAW and there's alot of available permits out there," said Cummins.

People can go to the website for more information or to get permits. 

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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