Quiet Park Series: Boundary Waters Canoe Area
This trip has all the elements of a transformational experience – nature immersion, guided mindfulness practice, and naturally quiet soundscape. Read more below.
- Mindful Adventure Travel
Recal Travel and Quiet Parks International are proud to present:
The Quiet Park Trip Series, Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
We've crafted an experience that takes you out of your noisy work environment and into one of the quietest (meaning the least amount of man-made noise) places in the U.S. Surrounded by the pristine lakes and forest of the Northwoods, we will guide you into the quiet in hopes to unlock an inner peace that matches the outer quiet of this unique place.
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCA) is an upcoming Quiet Wilderness Park, as defined by our partner for the trip series, non-profit organization Quiet Parks International. It also currently holds the designation of a Dark Sky Sanctuary. This combination of quiet and dark skies lend itself to an ideal atmosphere for a transformational travel experience.
We are guided and outfitted Boundary Waters Outfitters, an independently-owned and operated, racially-inclusive, and sustainability-minded outfitter. And our trip leader will be a Recal Mindfulness Coach. View our coaches here.
Trip attendees have the option of flying into Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) Airport (4 hour drive to Ely, MN) or Duluth International Airport (2 hour drive, with direct flights available from MSP, Chicago, Phoenix, and Ft Myers). As an add-on to the trip package, we have an airport pickup service from Minneapolis or Duluth airport to Ely (you can choose this when booking the trip).
This has the elements of a transformational experience - nature immersion, guided mindfulness practice to achieve inner quiet, naturally quiet soundscape for outer quiet, dark skies, and serene views that make you feel peaceful in the heart of the Northwoods. We are excited to share this incredible opportunity to escape our noisy daily lives and grow together with you.
- $1,950/person for a 4-day trip, $2,650/person for 6-day trip
- Inquire about specific dates for you or your group
- View the next tab for a day-by-day breakdown of the trip
Our mission behind the Quiet Park Trip Series is to help preserve quiet. QPI co-founder Gordon Hempton explains that “landowners and managers will save quiet if it provides them ways to economically sustain themselves.” As as result of the partnership between Recal and QPI, the trip series helps to stimulate economic development in a respectful and mindful way in some of the few remaining quiet places in the world.
Quiet Park Trip Series: Boundary Waters Canoe Area, Minnesota
- 4-day Itinerary
The Night Before
Arrive and warm welcome from trip leaders. Today, we will settle in at Boundary Waters Outfitters in Ely with an orientation meet-and-greet, which will include instructions from our guides about what to expect while making our way by canoe through the north country.
We will also practice our first meditative exercise with a 'quiet' dinner; this will open our senses to the food we eat and sounds we heard, setting the stage for introspection that will continue throughout the trip. We will break the silence after dinner with a campfire and intention-setting exercise and identify the "why" behind the reasons we're all here.
Day One Overview:
Fire Circle with Intention-Setting
Into the Boundary Waters
We'll get an early start to the morning with a meditation and breathwork activity. After eating breakfast, we will pile into the vehicles and head out to the Boundary Waters entry point designated for your trip.
This will be our first paddle and portage experience as we make our way through the serene and peaceful Northwoods environment. Throughout the day, we will be intentional to include periodic pauses to take in the environment and begin to identify sensory patterns for the continued quieting of our experience.
- For example, prompts will be given to encourage being present, like listening to the sound of your paddle hit the water in a rhythmic fashion.
- We'll also periodically pause to observe the natural soundscape around us. Not focusing on specific sounds, but the combination of them that makes this place unique.
We will complete our paddle and portage and set up camp for the evening. Dinner will be served by our guides, and there will be a night-time meditation that continues to re-attune our bodies to the natural circadian rhythms of nature.
Day 1 Overview
Guided Nature Meditation (Outer Quiet)
Morning and Night meditations to re-attune you to the natural circadian rhythms of nature
Breathwork (Inner Quiet) and Post-Breathwork Sensory Meditation
Group Meditation to Nature Sounds within the Park
Note: if you are on the 6-day trip, this day will include the motorized towboat to a more remote area of the Boundary Waters; this is where your canoeing will begin.
Day 2-3 (2-5 for 6-day trip)
Rhythm of the Boundary Waters
We will begin each day with a morning meditation, breathwork, and awareness-building of how our senses are reacting to the quiet nature around us.
Activity and distance covered will vary by your chosen trip, however some may include a day full of paddle and portage to the next campsite, while others we spend a day near camp with off-shoot hiking experiences.
Days are long this far north, and so we'll have time each day at camp for unguided self exploration as well. This is a good opportunity to do a journaling practice, go on a short hike around the property, read, absorb the sounds of nature, etc.
Our evening of the day we stay put at camp will include a guided mindful forest bathing hike.
Day 2-3 / 2-5 Overview:
Guided Meditation (Inner Quiet)
Hatha Yoga Practice (Inner Quiet)
Unguided Individual Exploration (Inner Quiet)
Mindful Forest Bathing (Outer Quiet, Listening to Nature Sounds)
And with that, the sun has set on our time together.
This is our last day (Day 4 for the 4-day trip, Day 6 for the 6-day trip). Knowing that we'll be re-entering the noisy world from which we came, there will be one last dive into ourselves to achieve inner peace through a yoga practice meant to reacquaint ourselves...with ourselves. Afterward, we will do our final paddle and portage to the entry point, where Boundary Waters Outfitters will be there to pick us up.
We will also share information with you on how to stay in touch with the group and Coach to keep up the practices that we worked on during the trip. You will also receive your next set of Recal Journal pages to continue your journaling practice.
And with that... we say our goodbyes.
Day Four Overview:
Yoga: Postures to Warm up and Reacquaint with Ourselves (Inner Silence)
- Recal Coach and trip leader for all mindfulness practices throughout the trip
- including breathwork, meditation, quiet hikes, and more
- All canoeing and camping gear
- All food and beverages for breakfast, lunch, and dinner during the trip
- Vehicle parking is available in Ely, Minnesota
- A Recal Journal as a companion to your quiet journey
- Transportation to Ely, Minnesota
- Gratuities (as you see fit) for local guides and Recal coach
The trip begins in Ely, Minnesota at the Boundary Waters Outfitters.
The address is:
638 Kawishiwi Trail
Ely, MN 55731
We will send you a full Packlist of items to bring in advance of the trip. But for starters, here's a few things you'll need to bring:
Flashlight or Headlamp
Reusable water bottle/canteen
Activewear clothing you are comfortable hiking, biking, practicing yoga, and sitting/lying on the ground in
Recal Journal (which will be sent to you before the trip)
Any personal items that you use for your own mindfulness practices
There will be a Recal coach on the trip leading you through this trip into the quiet. You will experience guided breathwork, meditation, quiet hikes, and other forms of mindfulness.
You will also have our Recal Journal available to you for journaling throughout the trip.
And lastly, given you will be in nature in one of the most beautiful places in the world, there will be more than enough unguided opportunities for mindfulness -- we encourage this as well.
This trip is primarily for adults, so you must be at least 18 years old. Contact us with any questions
If you have to cancel, send us a note at least 45 days before the event and we will hopefully be able to accommodate.
All of our trips enact a 'Presence Policy,' in which you commit to limiting phone use and other technology that pull you away from your awareness of the trip. This is particularly important for our Quiet Series, as our phones and computers are a bridge to the noisy world we are intentionally leaving behind for a brief time.
Our core principles of Mindful Adventure Travel are:
Our trips help you recalibrate your mind and body and bring yourself back to center. This enables you to more effectively navigate all of life’s stressors and challenges. Let’s dig into how we do that:
- Recal Journal. This important element actually begins before the trip itself; as soon as you sign up, you will be sent a Recal Journal. The journal has everything you need to begin your journey toward a recalibrated mindset: prompts for mindful and intentional living, daily highlights, lowlights, reflections, a gratefulness practice, and more.
- Tips and Useful Content from Recal. In order to prepare you for the trip, we will send information to you that includes a guide for how to practice your own breathwork, meditation, or yoga. We also have tips on how to increase your general fitness level leading up to the trip.
- Personal Coaching. Every trip includes a 1:1 session with your Recal Coach before the date of your trip. This will help prepare you for what's ahead and what to expect.
- Recal Journal. The trip itself provides the perfect mindspace and environment, immersed in nature, to be present and able to put thoughts and reflections on paper. Our Recal Journal is the perfect tool for this.
- Breathwork. This is the key ingredient. Your Recal Coach will guide you through breathing exercises that are immensely helpful to center yourself and dive more deeply into being present. Breathwork is a tool that we use to shed stress and anxiety, as well as bring a sense of calm and clarity to your mind and body.
- Meditation. Your Coach will also lead various styles of meditation; the outdoor and unplugged nature of the trip enables you to dive more deeply into this mindfulness practice (even if you are new to meditation)
- Yoga. Depending on your trip itinerary, yoga will be incorporated. The style of practice is a flow more akin to recovery, flexibility, and centering as opposed to a power flow. This is a perfect complement to the adventurous nature of the trip.
- Unguided Mindfulness. In addition to the guided elements, we also set aside time in your trip itinerary to explore mindfulness on your own — whether that is a walking meditation, solo sit, silent hike, time to read, additional journaling, or other activity.
- Recal Journal. Journaling doesn’t have to end with the trip; we created this specifically as an ongoing tool for mindful and intentional living. There is also an option to receive automatic replenishment of the refillable pages of the journal.
- Recal Content and Newsletters. The core mission of Recal is to provide you with the tools to attain, and maintain, a recalibrated mindset so you are equipped to navigate all of life’s stressors and challenges. After your trip is over, with your permission, we will provide you with useful content and information to enable you to maintain the things you practiced on the trip
- Stay in Touch with the Group. The connections you create with other incredible people on your trip can have a lasting impact. We will create a virtual space for you to stay in touch well after your trip.
- Personal Coaching. Every trip includes a 1:1 session with your Recal Coach beforehand, and we also offer one after the trip is over. If you want to go even deeper, and if your Coach has availability, you can continue to work with them on an ongoing basis.
You can read more about our approach to Mindful Adventure Travel on our About Us page.