August 11, 2021 – The Border is Open, Finally!
Posted on August 11, 2021
Well it looks like Trudeau and his government stuck to their word and the border is open! Our first US guests, Kevin Western and his group, arrived Monday morning. Kevin said the border guards were professional, relatively quick, and asked the questions you would expect them to ask. Now Kevin and the group had all of their ducks in a row and information submitted into the ArriveCAN app, which of course makes everything a lot faster and smoother. When they arrived they were about 15 vehicles back from the border, and it took them roughly an hour to get across. We have been hearing that wait times have been varied and can be pretty damn long. I have heard as long as 7-8 hours at International Falls and Baudette. I haven’t heard of wait times being that long at Pigeon River, so I would recommend crossing there if possible.
Here is a brief summary of what we know about crossing the border and what is required. Current and accurate information can be found at https://travel.gc.ca/travel-covid
or by calling 1 800 461 9999.
In brief summary:
-The border is open to travel for fully vaccinated individuals as of August 9th
– Proof of a completed negative test from the past 72 hours will be required. We have learned that the test needs to be a molecular test and not an antigen test, and that the Rapid Diagnostic Test performed at Walgreens or CVS are acceptable with results given in 24 hours. (Thanks for the info, Terry!)
– There is the possibility of random testing at the border
– You must use the ArriveCAN app, and have your information and proof of vaccination uploaded within 72 hours prior to your entry
– You must have a 14 day quarantine plan in place in case the CBSA decides it is required in your particular case. Your quarantine plan will need to be input into the ArriveCAN app, and you can use our address as your quarantine location. It is:
Press Lake Camp
2054 Valora Rd
PO Box 1077
– I believe in lieu on coming into Canada to quarantine you can withdraw your request to enter into Canada, and just return home. However a plan is still required in the app.
– ***We have been hearing that it is now prohibited to bring any bait across the border. I’m not currently sure about the specifics of this but I would err on the side of caution and pick up your bait in Canada. If you require something other than minnows let me know a week or more ahead of your arrival and I can likely have it at camp for you, or you can purchase minnows, leeches, crawlers, etc. from any bait store in Canada.***
Well I believe that is about all we know as of now, I’ll be sure to update this blog as we learn any new and useful information.
We have finally started to get little spot showers of rain here and there. It is by no means near what we need, but it is definitely better than what we have gotten all summer, which was nothing. We are still under a fire ban, so campfires and shore lunches over an open flame source are a no go. On the plus side though, all of the fires close to us have been controlled or put out, so we do not currently have much smoke or any immediate threats to monitor. North Western Ontario has been ablaze most of the summer but thanks to the massive efforts of all of the wildfire crews and the little bit of rain we are starting to get, things are slowly calming down.
Unfortunately the little bits of rain we have been getting haven’t been enough to raise the lake levels any. The water level is still insanely low and caution needs to be taken, especially when around any reefs. We have had two motors wrecked over the last two weeks. The best advice I can give is to stay away from anywhere known to be rocky (narrows, rock gardens, etc.) and be very careful around the humps we like to fish in the fall. Those 6-8′ tops on the reefs are now shallow enough to hit, but not so shallow so as to be seen. We are hoping for a wet fall and some good snow levels this winter to get things back to normal for 2022.
Despite the low water the fish are still biting really well. Not too much new to report since my last post, the fish are still on or around the humps. I have been finding a little less success lately on the reefs past Red Rock, and have been doing a little better around the islands and reefs adjacent to the deeper water out on the big lake. I will hopefully have some more information and pictures to report now that our flow of guests is returning and we will have significantly more boats on the water.