Ge-be-on-e-quet Lake

Making Connections

  • Portage North, 35 rods, to Ge-be-on-e-quet Creek
  • Portage South, 120 rods, to Green


  • Fisher F-16, Loon, Lac La Croix, Nina Moose Lakes
  • McKenzie 13, Lac La Croix


  • DNR Lake No. 690350
  • Lake Map No. C0892
  • Lake Table No. 2A
  • MDH Fish Consumption Advisory - N/A
  • MPCA Water Quality
Ge-be-on-e-quet Lake
Scale 1:21420
Full image approximately 2 miles square


Ge-be-on-e-quet is a large, relatively deep lake at the head of Gebeonequet Creek in the Lac La Croix basin, 16 miles east of Crane Lake and 29 miles NNW of Ely. Intricately cruciform in shape, Gebeonequet's four arms and central bay encompass 607 acres with a maximum depth of 55'. The deeply cut shoreline within the arms of the lake give Ge-be-on-e-quet 12 miles of shoreline, more than any other lake in the region not on the international border.

A 35 rod portage out of the end of the northeast arm bypasses a set of rapids, dropping 42' into Ge-be-on-e-quet Creek, which flows northward to its confluence with Pocket Creek and beyond to Lac La Croix. At the end of the southeastern arm a 120 rod carry connects with Green Lake to the south, climbing nearly 100' in the first 50 rods before leveling off, then dropping 50' in the final 25 rods. In the southwestern arm is the mouth of Hag Creek, having flowed, run, and seeped some 2½, miles, through bog, intermittent stream, and small pond, from its headwaters at Hag Lake. In the end of the northwestern arm is the mouth of Charm Creek, entering Ge-be-n-e-quet a quarter mile below Charm Lake.

The forests which ring Ge-be-on-e-quet are of a great many age classes, all jumbled together by the historical vagaries of wildfire. The major fire years of 1601, 1681, 1739,1755-59, 1796, 1803, 1864, and 1894 are all represented. This region of the BWCA escaped damage in the 4th of July windstorms of 1999, which caused such extensive tree loss to the south and east.


Ge-be-on-e-quet supports six established campsites, one on an island.

Planning Considerations

Ge-be-on-e-quet is the northernmost lake in the Gebeonequet/Oyster route, which runs south from the mouth of Gebeonequet Creek on Pocket Creek, through Gebeonequet, Green, and Rocky lakes, to Oyster. There it connects with the east/west Pauness/Boulder Bay route, which heads north and east out of Upper and Lower Pauness on the Little Indian Sioux River through Shell, Little Shell, Lynx, Ruby, Hustler, Oyster, and Lake Agnes, to Boulder Bay on Lac La Croix. Ge-be-on-e-quet also provides bushwhack access up Hag Creek to Hag Lake and up Charm Creek to Charm Lake.


Ge-be-on-e-quet supports populations of Lake Whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis), Northern Pike (Esox lucius), Smallmouth Bass (Micropterus dolomieui), Walleye (Stizostedion vitreum), White Sucker (Catostomus commersoni), and Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens).

Notes and Comments

Ge-be-on-e-quet is far and away the most hyphenated of BWCA place names (though some choose to drop them altogether). Still don't have a clue what it means, so if anyone out there does, we'd love to hear it.

Ask and you shall receive... While passing, for the moment, on its linguistic credibility, here is a creative interpretation from Ryeman:

After a little research and a couple years of puzzlement, I believe I found the meaning behind the name of Lake Ge-Be-On-E-Quet, and the creek of the same name. All you linguists can review please my interpretations:

Ge- a derivative of middle French: Geo
Geo- means "earth/land"

Be to exist as in "To be or not to be"

On- a British Circa 1541: "talking incessantly"

E- Old French: "out, away"
From the Latin: "missing"

Quet- a derivative of the Quillemot
A Quillemot is one of several northern sea birds, allied to the auks. They have short legs, placed far back, and are expert divers and swimmers.

Note: The common guillemots, or murres, belong to the genus Uria (as U. troile); the black or foolish guillemot (Cepphus grylle, formerly Uria grylle), is called also sea pigeon and eligny.

interpreted as "The Land without the Cry of the Loon"

What do you think?

May Your Boots Dry Quickly

Line of Spruce Trees

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Last updated on 11 April, 2004