We awoke on day three to an overcast morning, worried that a storm would keep us back another day. Fortunately, it was a quick shower - unfortunately, that means not much more rain for the waterways.
The roof of the lean-to started leaking during the rain so we had to put our rain fly on to keep our belongings dry. After a little bit of scrambling and re-arranging, we relaxed until the shower ceased.
Our next move was a portage right across the lake at a state campground.
Thankfully, It was an easy 1 mile portage through the campground road.
Eighth Lake was small and quiet, and only 1.5 miles to the other end where a cairn marked our out for another portage.
It would be a 1.1 mile carry over the highest point on the NFCT- 1,825 feet.
Many areas of this portage were quite rocky and difficult to wheel over. Teton's cart came apart a few times and he had to make some repairs along the way.
After what seemed like many miles, we reached the 500 foot boardwalk to Brown's Tract Inlet.
This boardwalk was constructed in the past few years. Before that time, it was a swampy, murky mess to get through to the inlet.
The dock was the perfect place to stop for lunch!
Just as we were about to hit the water, it began to rain. We were refreshed with a very brief shower and the sun came out while we swerved and curved our way through Brown's Tract Inlet.
It was fun and quite beautiful to paddle through the lilies. We also had to make our way over beaver dams as we traveled through the long stream.
We were relieved finish the tiresome hairpin turns of BTI and reach the bridge which signified our entrance into Raquette Lake.
The town of Raquette Lake was right around the corner and we treated ourselves to waterside ice cream cones and a quick beer before hitting the water to find camp. This lake was tricky to navigate as there were many bays, inlets, and islands that made it confusing to find your way through. However, it is a beautiful lake with 99 miles of shoreline containing houses, hotels, and even a historical church.
We passed a few interesting things while making our way to camp. Off of Big Island, a jet ski was powering a "jet pack" attached to a man's feet. He was soaring through the air and zooming through the water while we stopped to observe. As we continued, loud music lured us toward the shore of Wood's Point where a giant company party was taking place.
Our plan was to camp on Beecher Island. We found a perfect and gorgeous waterside camp spot! As we were walking to unpack our gear, we noticed no camping signs around the island. Disappointed, we decided to continue on and hoped to find another campsite soon, as the sun was setting.
We landed a few miles later at the last lean-to on Raquette Lake. This was a newly built shelter and while I was exploring the inside, I discovered a little mouse nesting in a bag of toilet paper... we pitched our tent away from the shelter in the trees near the lake. As we finally drifted off to sleep, the menacing creature found us and kept us awake. We had quite a sleepless night, worrying he would chew his way through our dry bags or into our tent!