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This was planned to be part of a 2 part high adventure summer outings for Troop 777 with 148 miles on the Manistee in June 2008 and white water rafting on the New river in West Virginia in August 2008. What was going to make this trip interesting was the fact that the area had 10 inches of rain a few weeks before our trip and that made the river run faster and much higher. Unfortunately the Manistee was not its normal clear self with lotsa of storm run off.
We started are trip at the CCC bridge, got all of our gear ready, transported cars – Thanks to Wilderness Canoe Rentals. We camped at the state Forest camp ground at the bridge. Had a nice camp fire with fast burning pine… bedded down and got ready for the trip.
Early in the day we got started, things went well, until in some tight turns, some of the beginners learned how cold the water was… fortunately it was a nice day and they were able to warm up. We ate on the river at a nice spot continued on. We traveled about 37 miles to M-66 for the night. We stayed at a closed state forest park along the river. Had a nice dinner, did some swimming and settled down for the night… Two in our crew met us here after dark by river and headlamps.
Man! This turned out to be the long day we traveled 67 miles that day and some 12 hours on the river. By the end of this day, a lot of the beginners were becoming intermediates… One of our adults left his camera where we had lunch, but some other Scouts canoeing the river were able to retrieve it for him (via the leaders wife driving to meet us). We could not find our campsite so we stayed in an open field just past Baxter's Bridge (under the power lines). Had a nice dinner (Pizza and ramon noodles and other goodies..)
We traveled 32 miles over 8 hours to Indian Crossing primitive camp ground and it was great place to stay. We had a nice campsite overlooking the river. We hiked up river a ways and floated down river to get refreshed in the cool river. That night we had the world famous "Oh God" church service by one of our scouts and discussed what we all were learning on this trip and why we were here, some were very interesting. Had a nice fire, relaxed and bedded down for the night.
We got up early and traveled the final 12 miles to our out point at Wilderness Canoe rentals. Wilderness was a great help in shuttling us from our out point to our in point. They like to help the Scouts when they can and a fair price. Wilderness is in Mesick, Mich. A great trip and time was had by all…
Full Size Sail Rig