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Traverse Area Paddle Club

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Trip Reports

May 18 Pine River - Elm Flats to Peterson

Lois Goldstein  | Published on 5/18/2021
When I was packing my gear and clothing for this trip, I put both knee-high neoprene Chota boots in the car, as well as my Chaco sandals.  When we arrived at the put-in at Elm Flats at about 9:30, it was already 70 degrees, so my sandals were the obvious choice.  By the end of the day, the temp was up to 83, and everyone was wearing shorts and river shoes that would allow our feet to stay cool.  Besides John & me, other participants were Susan & Gerald Wilgus and Jim Cooper.  We were surprised that the group was so small, but it worked out really well.  Everyone has been vaccinated, and "we are all in this together".  Special thanks to Alaney Miltner of Pine River Paddlesports Center, who helped us with our shuttle.

The sun was out all day, and we saw only one other paddler, who was heading out when we arrived at our lunch spot at Dobson.  The river was lively, with no obstructions (thanks to PRPC for safety work).  The trees aren't quite done with leaf-out, but that should occur within the next week.

I noticed a smart phone as I paddled over a gravel bar, and John got out to pick it up (but tossed it out when we got home, since the inside was all corroded).  We also spotted several obvious pieces of trash along the way, so we know that there will be stuff for us to capture later this season when we schedule the Pine River cleanups.  We were hoping not to find anything, but hope springs eternal.

About 15 minutes before the end of the trip, we did a major exchange of equipment.  Gerald moved to Sue's kayak using John's paddle - it was a bit easier for him than his gorgeous wooden solo canoe.  Sue took her own paddle and got into John's kayak, which was a touch narrow, but she did just fine - needed a bit of assistance to get out at the end.  Note - when John test-paddled the Dagger Stratos 12.5, I tried it out too, and thought that it was a bit narrow for my butt.  Meanwhile, John paddled Gerald's canoe through the rock garden to our takeout at Peterson.  It's a sweet boat!

The Pine is probably my favorite river up north, and we love to share it with others.  Hopefully you can join us next time.

Report by Lois, photos by John
Access at Elm Flats

Gerry in the canoe he built