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Traverse Area Paddle Club

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Trip Reports

July 10 Pigeon River

Lois Goldstein  | Published on 7/10/2016
General thoughts:
Portages, nobody else on the river, lovely scenery, climbing over logs, great group, fun riffles at the end, sunshine.  Did we mention portages?  It's a summertime river - we will return once each year.  Worth the drive. 
 
Thanks for Linnea and Henry for the shuttle services, John and Angie Willis for lumberjack work, John Heiam for hauling logs, Jocelyn for route finding, and Carrie for schlepping boats over obstacles.
Written by Lois, photos by John Heiam and Jocelyn
 
Such a beautiful river - why do so few people paddle it?
 
The access was less than ideal, but not awful.
 
The river has many trees down across the river. Some blockages require portaging by landing and carrying the boats around.
 
There are no signed, groomed portage trails. Here John Willis helps Lois with her canoe.
 
Sometimes the place where you have to launch is muddy and deep. Here John steadies Lois' canoe while she steps from land directly into her canoe.  Quote of the day: "Just jump in!"
 
There were many stretches of river that were clear.
 
Sometimes it was easier to get out on the logs and just pull the boats over. 
 
Getting in on the other side was sometimes a challenge.
 
Even with the obstacles, we all were having a good time. Here we are at lunch.
 
Here I decided it was easier to remove the log, than to carry our boats over. The water was not cold, and there were no leeches. John Willis jumped in to help me move the log upstream. We never remove woody debris from a stream, just rearrange it.
 
Along the way the usual wildflowers were in bloom. (Joe Pye Weed here, same family as milkweed and butterfly weed.)