During our time in the Grand Marais area, we camped at Cascade River State Park in a site where you can see Superior between the birches. The cool May air (49 degrees) was refreshing (it was a humid 90 degrees back home).
The night before the shoot, we went over the game plan with Jack and asked if he had any other last-minute shot ideas. “The sun rising over the East Bay,” he said without hesitation.
We get up before the birds often enough but understand that some people see more value in a good night’s sleep. We were pumped when Jack wanted to meet at 4:30 a.m. to show us the best spot to take in the sunrise.
It was spectacular, especially when the sun was partway over the pines, sending a light-trail across the water to our feet.
After breakfast, we geared up for a little fly fishing and hiked down to Jack’s sanctuary along with James, a Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply guide.
The fish weren’t biting, but it didn’t matter. We were in church.
In the afternoon, we waded the Kadunce River with James. He shared his knowledge and a few favorite holes, including a pool at the base of a waterfall where steelhead pass on their annual run upriver.
Just as James told us “steelhead can swim up waterfalls,” a monster leaped halfway up the 10-foot fall.
I managed to land a 14-inch brook trout, the largest brookie I’ve caught, but really wish I could have gotten a closer look at the steelhead that shook the hook before Dave could net it.
Not only does Stone Harbor offer guided fly fishing trips in the summer, it also provides paddling (canoe, kayak, SUP), hiking, and rock climbing excursions. In the winter, it does ice fishing, ice climbing, snowshoeing and river skiing.
In other words, Stone Harbor supplies adventure, guides adventure, loves adventure. In Jack’s words, Stone Harbor provides its visitors “an experience of a lifetime that they’ll never forget.”