St John's in Maine
Posted by: old_user on Feb-20-09 9:31 AM (EST)
I am planning a river trip with a friend in late June and we were exploring the option of the St. Johns. We did the Allagash a few years back at the end of June and loved the area. We have 4 nights so we were planning on leaving from Moody Bridge and finishing up in Allagash Village.
I have the Delorme Allagash and St. John map as well as the AMC maine river guide. I was hoping for some firsthand experience or accounts of the river. My main concern is going to be water level at this time of year (late June) I did a thread search and have read all the info that the archives had to offer.
If this isn't a reality due to water levels, does anyone have any other suggestions along the NFCT that would fit our bill of night 1 at the riverhead and then 3 days on the water with limited portage and fairly remote?
Thanks in advance for any suggestions or advice.
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Another good source|
Posted by: riverstrider on Feb-20-09 12:58 PM (EST)
If you haven't already checked it out, the Northeast Paddlers Message Board has many paddlers familiar with that river (unfortunately I'm not one of them), and are a great source of info.
St. Johns in June calls for Plan B|
Posted by: kayamedic on Feb-20-09 4:30 PM (EST)
We run it right after ice out. After the first week in June its iffy. I have lots of snow tales.
Posted by: old_user on Feb-20-09 7:38 PM (EST)
Thanks for the advice. I was thinking the same thing about the water level. Unfortunately for this trip, I am a teacher so I can't get that time until late June. I'm going to look into the penobscot trip that you mentioned.
Moose river portage|
Posted by: kayamedic on Feb-21-09 9:07 AM (EST)
"We did the Moose River Bow Trip last summer. That was a fun trip, but that portage was no real fun at all"
Posted by: jonsprag1 on Feb-24-09 9:37 PM (EST)
you aren't likely to have enough water in late june to do the St John
not sure about that this year|
Posted by: kayamedic on Feb-24-09 10:23 PM (EST)
If this snow pack sticks around it could be interesting!
it can suprise you|
Posted by: jonsprag1 on Feb-25-09 1:45 PM (EST)
but I suspect on June 30 barring lots of rain snow etc you would be doing more carrying than paddling.
What about the St. Croix?|
Posted by: booztalkin on Feb-27-09 2:08 PM (EST)
Ditto the others on West Branch. In parts, it looks very much like the St. Johns. It's a short run but between there, Lobster, and Chesuncook, you can easily spend three nights and there are no portages. The West Branch is dam controlled, so water is assured.
Posted by: old_user on Feb-28-09 9:48 AM (EST)
Hey Thanks for some other rivers to investigate.
Upon further reading...St. Croix|
Posted by: booztalkin on Mar-02-09 10:04 AM (EST)
Posted by: jonsprag1 on Mar-02-09 3:07 PM (EST)
The AMC canoe guide to Maine rivers has a very good description of the St Croix---the river is dam controlled at Vanceboro--call Domtar Paper Company to find out how much water is being released.
Posted by: kayamedic on Mar-02-09 5:44 PM (EST)
absconds to Canada after leaving Ft.Kent..where it flows southeast to the city of St. John.
Posted by: old_user on Apr-22-09 6:44 AM (EST)
Posted by: mgc on May-08-09 12:20 PM (EST)
The Saint Croix is a very easy paddle. I took my wife and boys on it when the boys were about 12 and 14. They had no issues with paddling their own canoe. You will have an option to camp on either the US or Canadian side of the river. The Canadian sites are accessible by ATV so don't be surprised if you have guests. There is only one real nice run where you need to worry about dumping. You'll know when you get there. It's a quick drop with a very short carry. We unloaded the canoes and then ran it over and over again just for fun.
just starting to get boney|
Posted by: old_user on Jul-24-09 2:55 AM (EST)
and the bugs are vicious.
turner bogan as a put in?|
Posted by: old_user on Sep-03-09 10:24 PM (EST)
anyone ever tried this part of the river?
anybody going up this spring?|
Posted by: old_user on Apr-27-10 7:21 PM (EST)
iced out early.
Sometimes it comes up with substantial|
Posted by: kayamedic on Apr-27-10 9:39 PM (EST)
Posted by: old_user on Apr-28-10 6:50 AM (EST)
i have run the last 6 years but she is going low so soon. 5 years ago i pulled from 5th pond to allagash. that was before i learned to pole. after watching the levels go up and down last summer i think it would be worth the gamble to do a summer trip on the st.john. i have been down last week of june after a big rain and seeing it in lush bloom was fantastic. i did pay the bugs a toll of red blood. over the winter i sold off all my discovery canoes and got a tripper17 and an appalachian16 for bigger water. looks like the appy will have to wait till next year as i will be poling the river at these levels. have you done the aroostic?
Some not much|
Posted by: kayamedic on Apr-29-10 7:47 PM (EST)
and it was only a 25 mile stretch with Oxbow somewhere in the middle.
need to check avail. gauges...|
Posted by: bigspencer on Apr-28-10 3:06 PM (EST)
Not much snowfall(slow runoff) this last winter = an area in need of rain....so check gauges often.
level is good to go right now|
Posted by: old_user on Apr-30-10 9:00 PM (EST)
looks like a big rain coming in a few days. i see some guides have trips on the 10th and 17th of may. i have floated past nine mile as low as 1100cfm and i pulled my canoe at 850cfm.
Posted by: bigspencer on May-01-10 5:09 PM (EST)
damn that river|
Posted by: old_user on May-20-10 2:05 AM (EST)
she is wicked empty now. i know some groups put in last weekend for the trip up to allagash. with temps going up and no water that river can become a death march pulling your canoe over the rocks all day. i was to go up this weekend for 12 days on the water but thats just a dream now. i have barely made it up the river when the nine mile gauge was at 1100cfm. below priestley bridge the river will torture you at the levels we have now.
just got home from the st.john|
Posted by: old_user on Jun-21-10 12:11 AM (EST)
poled from baker lake to dickey at crazy low levels. no way could anybody paddle it. i left enough green royalex on the rock to make a small kayak. will post up pictures later this week. you can pole at half the level you need to paddle. i ran it at about a third. saw not a soul and had good conversation with my dog and a nice mouse one evening. best trip i ever had. finished with thunder and lightning while running big rapids, even pinning my pole in a deep wave train half way down. getting it back is a story itself.