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“Amazing stay!”

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Moose Track Adventures
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Ely
Certificate of Excellence
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing stay!”
Reviewed May 27, 2014

We LOVED our stay here...cabins are clean and cute and RIGHT on the lake. Sunset views were amazing. The owners are very friendly and have incredible knowledge about the area that they are willing to share. We rented canoes from them for a three night excursion into the Boundary Waters and the canoes were high quality Kevlar canoes to make portages. We will most certainly be back for more amazing adventures! :)

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sarah P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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154 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Laconia, New Hampshire
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 2, 2013

We found all we neede here. Fishing Weather was perfect and the cabin was just perferct.
We had a wonderful fish fry with the other "vacationers" and a good time was had by all
If you are looking for a relaxed vacations and special treatment this is the place to be.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lynn S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed August 11, 2013

Sometimes you just get lucky. Sometimes you have good fortune hit you like a fire hose...

Background:
We were looking for a resort that could entertain 7 people between 8 and 70 years old and one energetic dog. Complicate that by starting the planning late (3 weeks prior, calling around in July, for a cabin in Ely...'nuf said), and we had a perfect formula for disappointment, or a "take whatever we can get" vacation. What we got instead was 5 days of magic memories, beautiful scenery and the personalized, genuine charm of an honest family-run resort.

Disclaimer:
In the interest of full disclosure, I am a (rabid, nutcase) fly fisherman -- but for our selection of Moose Track as our family destination, my obsession was only a "bonus", not a central reason for selecting the place. As much as I could spend the next 30 years as a Zen-focused fishing bum, my family needs a different kind of vacation. We had limited time, and sketchy weather to work around, so I couldn't hog the nice days by disappearing on solo guided trips. Despite the weather, we ALL found plenty to enjoy during both the sunny and cloudy periods -- and my fishing day would come...

Family Adventure:
When the weather window opened for next day, Joan made sure we had everything we needed for a fantastic canoe day trip. She coached us in the basics, and showed experienced instincts in reading our party -- we weren't the most uh, woodsy...and she made sure to cover the important "gotchas" that can ruin a trip. Think "super mom", with a PhD in wilderness survival, and a knack for speaking in practical bullet-lists that end with "have fun!"

We spent one full day with kids and dog in the BWCA -- an incredibly easy paddle from the Moose Track dock. As a home base for a BWCA adventure, I can't imagine a better location or a more competent and thoughtful outfitter. I can see us bringing a larger family group next year, and spending multiple nights in the BWCA for the more adventuresome troops, while the less rugged members of our tribe hold down the fort in a cozy cabin. We can easily balance interests with "something for everyone" here.

For the Fly Fisher:
*** Non-fishers can skip down to Summary -- you were warned ;) ***
After days of "pacifier fishing" (throwing flies off the main dock, under gray skies, with no real expectation of catching anything), I felt the days running short and the weather improving. After some minor begging, I was issued a kitchen pass and my allowance -- so I booked a half-day of guided fly fishing with Jim. A half-day. Like half a potato chip. Half a beer. Needless to say, it's just too little time to really experience the magnificence of Farm and the nearby lakes. Stunning, breathtaking...at the risk of breaking into clichés, I'll just stop at "wow". If you want variety of scenery and challenging fishing habitats, this place is just jaw-dropping.

I have fished with guides in many places, from Belize to Canada, freshwater and salt. Guides come in all types: passionate or jaded, skilled or faking it, attentive or "just there"...Jim is the real deal, period. He knows where the fish are, what they want, and how to get it to them in a way that gets a bite. Every location is a puzzle -- and Jim knows all the pieces of his. This place is a world class fishery, and he has they keys.

This type of fly fishing is not floating delicate presentations to spring creek trout on a 3-weight. This is more like fishing in the salt, - heavier action rods are needed for punching big/nasty/weighted flies into hefty breezes when conditions demand it. If you need to brush up on your big-stick technique, book some lesson time with Jim before you head out in the boat. Jim has a dead-practical approach to instruction that can improve anyone's game. He'll diagnose your casting ills, and offer understandable real-time correction tips that will allow you to see yourself improve from one cast to the next. Listen! He knows what he's talking about, and doesn't bog down esoteric casting jargon (an unfortunate tendency among too many in our sometimes-pretentious little hobby, just sayin').

I won't bore the reader by breaking down "hero moments" in our fishing trip. I'll just say the smallies were right where Jim said they'd be, and they bit. Yes, I'll never forget the sight of one of my smallies t-boned in the jaws of that 45" pike -- but we weren't pike fishing, per se, so we'll just call that a bonus moment of "awesome". If some grave catastrophe doesn't prevent it, I'll be back for the Fall "feed bag" season -- and see if Jim can put me on the toothy monsters for reals. I'll be working on my cardio and building up my adrenaline tolerance in the mean time!

Summary:
Much has been said about the quality of the facilities, equipment and service of Jim and Joan in other reviews, and we'll only echo the same positive comments. This little gem of a resort is run by two rare people, and it's straight from the heart. If you are looking for canned corporate cookie-cutter hospitality, this may not be the place for you. Joan and Jim have a passionate connection to this wonderful place -- and they have created an experience where you can share that connection on any level. We will be back to Ely, and there is only one place our list.

Joan & Jim -- thank you so, so much for everything.

Room Tip: Book early to get a lake side cabin.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Dan G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stillwater, Minnesota, United States
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 27, 2013

My family just left moose tracks and loved our stay. We stayed in wolf den cabin. My kids are 10,8 and 6. They had a great time swimming and fishing. We took a 1/2 day guided tour with Mike and caught 6 different species of fish. My son caught his first fish ever!

Thanks, Jim, Joan and mike.

Room Tip: Just remember grocery stores close at 8pm in town.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Brian B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boulder, Colorado
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2013

Moose Track outfitted us for a week in Quetico Park and we stayed 2 nights in their cabins. Jim and Joan are the real deal - knowledgeable, service oriented and friendly. We have stayed at quite a few other Ely resorts but this is now our favorite. The cabins are clean, recently updated with light wood paneling and large picture windows overlooking Farm lake. Also the cabins are outfitted with utensils for cooking and have comfortable beds. Jim is an incredible resource for putting you on fish of all kinds. He knows all the lakes, when & where to fish, etc.

They also outfitted our Quetico wilderness adventure with really good equipment and tasty food. They were great to work with via e-mail and phone calls along the way. Two Thumbs way up !!!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank MK1962
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Connecticut
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed September 17, 2012

We spent time in the on-site cabins AND took a 3-day guided paddling adventure into the edge of the Boundary Waters. The cabins were small, but cute and perfect for a trip to MN. Most of the cabins have really good views of the lake. Joan and Jim were great! Tom, our guide, was fun and patient, and very helpful with the portages, campsite set-up and cooking! We did a 10-mile paddle around several of the lakes one day, went fishing, and he found us a wonderful campsite with a huge flat rock overlooking the lake - great for eating and for morning yoga!

The lodge is very close to several area attractions and must-do's:
- Take a day to rent a canoe and visit Hegman Lakes to see the pictographs. Easy drive, easy paddle, easy portages, and nice picnic and swimming spots.
- Take a day to hike the Dry and Bass Lakes loop, share your picnic with cute little (not shy!) chipmunks. Some parts of the trail are a little overgrown so wear long pants and bring tick spray.
- Visit the Kawishiwi Falls - close to the lodge, short and easy hike, fairly impressive falls (fed from a dam, so not seasonally affected, even in dry seasons)
- Visit the Front Porch cafe - buy a coffee and jump on their wi-fi connection to check on your email
- Red Cabin Custard - absolutely FANTASTIC! A Medium is plenty big enough. Fresh made. Small mom & pop stand, super creamy and a great way to build back all those calories you burn canoeing!
- Wolf and Bear Centers are good if you have a rainy day or have kids, but if you're pressed for time, they're skippable (and that from a big supporter of wolves in the wild)

Room Tip: the cabin on the very end of the property has the best view of the lake and a swingset for the kids...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank TravelGrlCT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed September 4, 2012

What a great experience taking fly fishing lessons from Jim at Moose Track Adventures!! I am a 58 year old female and was looking for a certified fly fishing instructor. He is not only a great, patient teacher, but was strict enough to make sure I left knowing what to do. It was fun to watch the extreme things he know about fly fishing and listen to stories of what it takes to be a "certified" instructor. I was there alone and had no problem camping in a tent at their campground. His wife Joan, children and dog Maggie were also delightful. I can't wait to go back and learn more casts!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Sherrielynn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Moose Track Adventures

Property: Moose Track Adventures
Address: 593 Kawishiwi Trl, Ely, MN 55731-8195
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Minnesota > Ely
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Ely
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Moose Track Adventures 3*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Moose Track Adventures Resort, Outfitter & Guide Service is located near Ely, Minnesota and has direct access to the famous Boundary Waters Canoe Area (BWCAW). We offer newly remodeled 2 & 3 bedroom cabins only 25 feet from the lake. Each cabin is fully equipped (except kitchen & bath towels). We also offer complete & partial BWCA canoe outfitting and full & 1/2 day guided fishing & fly-fishing trips with professional & experienced guides. Opened May - September. ... more   less 
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