Brunet Island State Park - Kayak Trip / Canoe Trip
Weekend Trip Report
August 28-31, 2006
Chippewa Falls, WI
Submitted by: lindabaron
I chose this park due to the fact that it WAS an island (and it was located near QCC, where I had to drop my kayak off for repair.) I LOVE camping on islands for some reason. I was very impressed with the whole island experience! I have never been to a more roomy campground as this was! I immediately checked out the water behind my campsite and if I had not been still recuperating from a back injury, I would have put-in right at my campsite!
I hooked up with Joe Nelson and his daughter Michelle from Wisconsin the next morning for a paddle. I hooked up with them through paddling.net and purewaterpaddlers sites. We put-in at the boat landing. The weather was perfect for paddling!
We started out to the right of the boat landing and checked out a few very still inlets, paddled past my campsite, and basically paddled a circumnavigation of the Chippewa River around the state park area, up to the bridge near the dam and back to the boat landing. We could have gone further down the Fisher River but I felt that it would be enough paddling for me for the day.
We paddled and piddled for about four hours and rested for lunch on the opposite shore at the beach. BTW: I would not recommend swimming in the beach water - a lot of algae making for a soupy green surface near the shoreline…
Animals seen during my stay: great blue herons, chipmunks, deer, kingfishers, and to my surprise a pair of Pileated Woodpeckers! The ranger told me that they had 3 pairs of them at the park. I have never seen them up so close, so I was thrilled!
The paddling was super easy and would be a great place to take kids to teach them about paddling. Apart from the odd log dodging there were no real obstacles to speak of and all class 1 water. I would definitely like to go back to this park, either by bike to stay, or again by car to camp and paddle.
A service station in Cornell, WI has a couple there that also paddles kayaks- if I ever need one I could borrow one of their kayaks-I just might take the lady up on the offer if I ride my bike there sometime! HAHA!! The park also has some nice trails that would be gorgeous in fall! A definite do-again-relaxation place to go!
The park consists of 2 campgrounds, a north and south campground. The north campground is hookup-free and has many sites directly backing on the river.
The south campground caters to RV's/trailers. Showers are located in the south campground and there are pit toilets in the north campground. Wood may be purchased at the park and any purchases for camping may be made in town which is a short distance away. The campsites are very spacious, with firepits and picnic tables. The road is paved which makes for smooth walking/biking trails-something to also think about if you are an avid motorcyclist like myself! The boat landing is convenient to use if you cannot take your canoe or kayak out or put in behind your campsite. Many sites have areas low enough to the water to putin/takeout right there and many people do just that. Some even moor their small motorboats behind their sites which is unheard of in many camping areas... so if you're a fisherperson... do a search on Brunet Island State Park, Wisconsin for further info on the park.
QCC 600XL kayak; Aquaterra kayak and another unknown kayak.
Camping fees vary depending upon your accommodations. A state fee is also required which is $10.00 per day or a seasonal state sticker may also be purchased for $35.00. I opted for the seasonal sticker since I would be going back in the next month to pick up my repaired kayak...
From northern Michigan (U.P.)/Eastern Wisconsin: Take Hwy 8 west to 27 south, to right on 64 to Cornell and follow signs to the park.
From the south: I-94 west in Wisconsin to 53north thru Chippewa Falls and hwy 178 to Cornell and follow signs - you have to turn onto Park Road in both cases to get to the park. Highway 178 is a scenic route highway. I took it on the way back and it would be pretty in the fall...
Streets and Trips recommended that I go through Chicago and around that way, but I opted to use I-75 north to St.Ignace and took the UP to Wisconsin and across that way. I hadn't been in the UP for many years so it was a nice LONG drive! HAHA!! It took me 12 hours to get to my campsite from Win dsor, Ontario... I stopped at the state information booths to pick up free maps. Also used Michelin's 2006 road atlas - it has a pic of my breed of dog on the cover... a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever.
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