-- Last Updated: May-29-13 9:31 AM EST --
First off let me say that I have an Old Town Discovery 158 and due to a ton of reasons I won't be getting another canoe in the near future. I know it is heavy compared to many others, but it is what I have and likely what I will have.
With that out of the way, My youngest son who just turned 14 and I want to do a canoe trip next year. We are in central Ohio and would like to be able to paddle in, fish and camp.
So where should we go? I know the BWCA is going to have some portages but are there areas we can enjoy ourselves without having to portage a ton? I would be content to find a good lake and stay there for the week.
Any other places? Michigan, Ontario or even Ohio etc?
I should add that while he just turned 14 this week he is 6'1", 215 and a strong kid. I just don't want our first trip to be one that ruins any future outings.
If the OT 158 is going to be a major hinderance I am sure there are a ton of rental places, but would like to keep costs lower if possible.
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Posted by: riverstrider on May-29-13 12:47 PM (EST)
I am unfamiliar with that area of the country, so can't really offer a suggestion as to where to go.
Oops-posted reply wrong|
Posted by: glendorado on May-29-13 2:53 PM (EST)
you're looking at the BWCA, you'll need a permit, and can only camp in designated sites. Alternative is the Superior National Forest below the BWCA. No permits, can camp anywhere not just in designated sites. Great fishing & solitude.Order a map for $10-covers both areas. The online map is not good.
I have an OT Disco 158, and I made... |
Posted by: Jackl on May-29-13 6:53 PM (EST)
Up blocks out of the grey high density foam for portaging it.
Posted by: PJC on May-30-13 11:20 AM (EST)
Killarney Provincial Park in Ont.? From Central Ohio that would be a shorter drive and offer a similar experience to the BWCA. Its quite a bit further for me to drive there so, I've never been there - its on my "bucket list" - but have repeatedly spoken with rangers from that park at the Canoecopias I've attended and it sure looks good to me. And so perhaps it might to you - worth looking in to, anyhow.
Posted by: Dr._Laser on May-30-13 8:55 PM (EST)
From central Ohio, Ontario offers good canoeing and Killarny was suggested. However, Algonquin is a little closer and offers great canoe wilderness camping. There are multiple access points like the BWCA, and similar procedures, also a daily fee per person. If you want to minimize portages try entry point 1 into Tea lake. If a little portaging is OK try entry points 3 or 4 and head for Misty. Check it out on line as you will need a reservation, same for Killarny. Both web sites give a lot of information. I live in north West Virginia, and my travel time to Algonquin is 10 hours, 21 hours to BWCA.
Posted by: scottv11 on Jun-03-13 4:14 PM (EST)
If you want to go to the BWCA a Kevlar canoe is rentable cheap from one of many outfitters.
Posted by: beaverjack on Jun-04-13 9:38 PM (EST)
Here in Ohio we have crap for canoeing opportunities. Most water we share with wave runners, magnum bass boats, and there's very little peaceful water. There's been times when I couldn't go to BWCA. The U.P. of Michigan was the answer. You can do the Big Island Wilderness, which is only a few miles wide by about 6 miles long. Or, you can do Sylvania Wilderness in western U.P. It's got mature forest, great fishing, and the portages are a few yards. I did it with a 68 lb. boat and a pot belly one year. The only problem is they charge by the night in most lake places in the U.P. You can also do the rivers on the U.P. The Manistique is beautiful, but not great fishing. Campground right southwest of Germfask is nice, and not too pricey. The Escanaba has clearings where hunters camp right next to the river, you can get to with a 4x4. We pulled our camper there and shuttled our canoes upstream and rod down. You just need to bring a mountain bike to shuttle your vehicle. Hope this helps. Take that boy camping. You only have a few years.
where in midwest|
Posted by: ppine on Jun-08-13 5:38 PM (EST)
Or the Manistee|
Posted by: rival51 on Jun-13-13 9:44 PM (EST)
which starts right next to the AuSable but flows west. State forest camping along much of it. The AuSable below Mio is in National Forest land. You will need to pull permits in advance for the sites there.
Posted by: FL-KeysPaddler on Jun-16-13 4:50 PM (EST)
The James River in VA is nice, but challenging at certain rapids. There are a few rivers in the UP - Ontanogan (sp), Sturgeon. Pick up a Canoeing Michigan guide, there is an updated version on Amazon (don't get the one from ten years ago!)
suggestion in northern PA|
Posted by: willowleaf on Jul-22-13 12:01 PM (EST)
You should not be all that far from north central Pennsylvania and the 228 mile long West Branch Susquehanna River Water Trail. Lovely wilderness river that goes through deep forested canyons with moderate flow, only a few portages around low head dams and fishing and camping along the route. Not as wild as Boundary Waters, but sometimes being near enough to towns to flee the river in really bad weather is a bonus. This site has excellent information on it and sells a very good laminated set of maps for the water trail with all the information you need for $20.50. Outfitters like McCrackens in Shawville (you can put in right near them, just below the low head dam at the small power station) both rent canoes and kayaks and offer shuttles to various takeouts downriver and upriver.
BWCA is doable "next year"|
Posted by: Mattt on Jul-23-13 8:50 AM (EST)
"So where should we go? I know the BWCA is going to have some portages but are there areas we can enjoy ourselves without having to portage a ton? I would be content to find a good lake and stay there for the week."
Greenbrier River is holding water well|
Posted by: tdaniel on Jul-23-13 9:04 AM (EST)
Just Back From Algonquin|
Posted by: Pturner on Jul-24-13 10:09 PM (EST)
Our scout troop in Wadsworth just got back from Algonquin. We had kids from 12-14 years old and did the Big Trout Lake Loop. We covered 40 miles in 5 days. It was a 450 mile 9 hour drive from here.you can make a loop to suit you so if you want to keep portaging to a minimum you can layout a trip o suit you. You can also rent a Kevlar canoe for $40/day if you so desire. It's a lot closer than BWCA and the campsites and port ages are well maintained.