Kawishiwi Lake

Making Connections

  • Paddle North, down the Kawishiwi River to Square



  • DNR Lake No. 380080
  • Lake Map No. C1209
  • Lake Table No. 9D
  • MDH Fish Consumption Advisory - N/A
  • MPCA Water Quality - N/A
Kawishiwi Lake
Scale 1:21420
Full image approximately 2 miles square


Kawishiwi is a relatively large lake which forms the headwaters of the Kawishiwi River. Its irregular form and many bays and peninsulas yield a long shore line. There are several islands of significant size, some with campsites. The extreme southeastern corner of the lake lies outside the boundaries of the BWCA and hosts a Forest Service campground.


Kawishiwi supports eight designated campsites, most on the northern and western shores.

Planning Considerations

Kawishiwi is a popular canoe entry point to the BWCAW, providing access from the Sawbill Trail north into the interior around the Kawishiwi River. Polly, Koma, and Malberg are an easy day's travel north from the entry point.


The National Forest Service campground at the southeast end of the lake is notorious for its bears, drawn by the campsite garbage dumpsters. To avoid bruin shuffling through your tent in the middle of the night you may want to arrive early enough to secure a campsite out on the lake itself.

Kawishiwi supports populations of Northern Pike (Esox lucius), Rock Bass (Ambloplites rupestris), Walleye (Stizostedion vitreum), White Sucker (Catostomus commersoni), and Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens).

Notes and Comments

Line of Spruce Trees

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Last updated on 11 April, 2004