- Wisconsin Trail Guide
- Black River
- Bois Brule River
- Brule River
- Chippewa River
- Eau Claire River
- Flambeau River
- Manitowish River
- Menominee River
- Montreal River
- Namekagon River
- Peshtigo River
- Pike River
- Pine River
- Popple River
- Red River
- St Croix River
- Tomahawk River
- White River
- Wisconsin River
- Wolf River
- Site Updates
A canoeing, kayaking and whitewater rafting guide to Wisconsin's most popular paddle rivers.
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Wisconsin offers a wide variety of canoeing and kayaking opportunities for paddlers of all skill levels, from raging whitewater runs through narrow rocky gorges, to slow, lazy floats down wide, sandy-bottomed rivers. Whatever type of paddling experience you're looking for, Wisconsin seems to have a river to satisfy nearly everyone. Below is a brief overview of the rivers featured in this guide.
Five rivers which offer excellent and consistent canoeing and kayaking are the: St Croix River, Namekagon River, Flambeau River (North Fork), Bois Brule River, and the Wolf River. The first three offer trips suitable for beginner through intermediate level paddlers, and feature long stretches of flat-water along with a few sections of low to medium hazard rapids. The Bois Brule and the Wolf are more narrow and offer intermediate to advanced whitewater runs that attract paddlers from across the Midwest. All five rivers generally have consistent water flows and are usually navigable throughout spring, summer, and into fall.
The "Lower Wisconsin State Riverway", a long section of the Wisconsin River, offers a very popular, sandy, 'big river' experience for flat-water paddlers!
Three rivers which offer excellent whitewater rafting and advanced level kayaking are: the Peshtigo River, Wolf River, and Menominee River. All three have a number of local outfitters which provide guided and non-guided rafting trips and shuttle services.
Three rivers which are 'less-traveled' yet offer beautiful, scenic, small-river runs are the: Manitowish River, Brule River, and the Pike River. The Manitowish and Brule are mostly flat-water, while the Pike offers a few intermediate rapids and one stretch of whitewater that will challenge advanced canoers and kayakers.
Canoe and kayak camping continues to gain popularity in Wisconsin. The National Park Service and the Wisconsin DNR have developed a large number of excellent riverside, canoe/kayak campsites for individual, and group, multi-day excursions along several rivers: the St Croix, Namekagon, Flambeau North Fork, and the Manitowish. A number of group sites along the St Croix and Namekagon are also accessible by car.
Both the Bois Brule River and Peshtigo River offer beautiful riverside campgrounds which are accessible by car, and have developed landings. The Bois Brule features two State Forest campgrounds along the river while the Peshtigo offers a pair of well-maintained County Parks with riverside camping. All of the campgrounds have RV sites, and Goodman County Park on the Peshtigo offers a dumping station and water station.
Check out the River Summary Page for a complete list of all the trips featured in this guide!
If you enjoy a little "creek runnin' carnage" then you should check out "Northwoods Whitewater" by Jim Rada. The book features most, if not all, of the significant class IV-V whitewater runs for advanced / expert kayakers in the upper Midwest, including Wisconsin.
Thank You for visiting Wisconsinpaddleguide.com. Hopefully this guide will help you find the paddling experience you are looking for.
June, 2012 - Wisconsintrailguide.com