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Michigan river scouting report

I drove to Grand Rapids from St Joseph two days ago and got a first hand look at 5 rivers...the St Joseph, Paw Paw, Black, Kalamazoo, and Grand. All five looked scary...all flooded with only small areas of open water and tons of shore ice with no direct water access. Yikes. One little 60 hour stretch of subzero with some -20 tossed in created quite a bit of ice in a hurry. Now after being ground zero for a bunch of winter storms almost all of our plentiful snow is gone due to more unseasonably warm weather and rain and my local river (the St Joseph) looks open but is not accessible due to flooding and mud. It's 50 now and it's supposed to be 15 tonight. Quite a bit of variation in weather this January.

Comments

  • We've just had 3 days of spring but I couldn't leave the house because we had construction going on.
    Did yard clean up, trimming, and just lazing in the sun.
    Cold, as we define it, will be back Saturday.

  • Ice jam in Portland (Michigan - Grand River). I hear that it has cleared up some now.

    Photo is by Mike Smith & seems to be with a LONG lens and it's about 100 yards from Verlen's statue to the far shore.

  • @string said:

    This has been our ice for the year. Gone in a day.

  • High of 68 water temp 59 on The Tyger River yesterday. We did 17.3 miles. Red Maples starting to bloom.

    It turns cold tomorrow with a high of 46. :D

  • The maples are tipping,
    down Tybee way,
    but vortices dipping,
    winter has still in play,
    the globe she's a warming,
    it's something I do believe,
    but before all's past half-baked,
    Jack's frosty bite will make more grieve

  • @castoff said:
    High of 68 water temp 59 on The Tyger River yesterday. We did 17.3 miles. Red Maples starting to bloom.

    It turns cold tomorrow with a high of 46. :D

    Any rapids on that section?

  • No shoals at the current water level. Put ins are a PIA except the one at Beaty Bridge on 176, but It is a long steep ramp. Nice bluffs some very big trees in spots. Wooded and undeveloped with the only sign of people being the occasional deer stand on private land, and a few cabins in the woods where it comes out at the Broad River. Bigger than the Enoree and smaller than the lower Saluda river.


    Old Carriage Bridge.

  • @castoff said:
    No shoals at the current water level. Put ins are a PIA except the one at Beaty Bridge on 176, but It is a long steep ramp. Nice bluffs some very big trees in spots. Wooded and undeveloped with the only sign of people being the occasional deer stand on private land, and a few cabins in the woods where it comes out at the Broad River. Bigger than the Enoree and smaller than the lower Saluda river.


    Old Carriage Bridge.

    And more water on the way.

  • That looks very nice castoff. Up here it's been fun to watch the big rivers break open and clear themselves of ice. The St Joseph popped up about 3 feet in one day and our local river park is closed again due to flooding. After getting in quite a bit of paddling in December and January we're not missing out on paddling as much as most winters (so far). Thought about paddling today and maybe should have gone since we may get a winter storm tonight.

  • No river paddling until I can dig out my kayak. That drift is about six feet tall and was created overnight. An east wind blows no good!

  • @Rookie said:
    No river paddling until I can dig out my kayak. That drift is about six feet tall and was created overnight. An east wind blows no good!

    Rookie your boat is probably dreaming of sunshine and liquid water while it hibernates against the side of your house. Here the Cardinals are singing, and the Snowdrops, Daffodils, and Jonquils are blooming. I thought telling you this might either warm your heart with the prospect of coming spring, or cause you to start mumbling words you don't want your family to hear! I hope it is the first possibility! If I lived where winter snow drifts were 6' deep I think I would take a long vacation down south in mid winter if at all possible. Hope it all melts soon and you get to wake up the kayak from it's dreams.

  • @castoff
    Has been a tough month here with back to back storms. Too much open water on the Great Lakes so the snow globe keeps spinning. Would love to be in an area similar to yours; maybe next winter. There's a walking track at the pool where I store my other two kayaks so before I do my lunch hour walk, I look at them longingly through the glass that separates the storage area from the lobby. They're a heck of a lot warmer than I am.

  • @Rookie said:
    @castoff
    Has been a tough month here with back to back storms.

    Well if you ever get down this way and would like to paddle I know some great spots. From lake Jocassee in the foothills, Muddy small rivers in the piedmont, Sparkelberry Swamp in the lowcountry, and the coastal marshes and beaches.

    I have been watching the weather and really feel for y'all this year!

  • That's a lot of snow Rookie. I hope it doesn't all melt suddenly. Here's a pic of Lake Michigan taken this morning.

  • @TomL

    Fingers crossed for a slow warm-up as it's going to be a mess when it melts. Nice that you've got open water down there; not the case up here. Ice, ice and more ice, but I did visit the Bear River yesterday so I could see liquid water. Popular fishing spot when the salmon are running.

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