Planning on going Kayak and canoeing with friends in 2 weeks during the week. We have our own equipment so does anyone know where a public acess is to put in and take out or can we shuttle our cars to an outfitter for a small fee and float to them? So far the fees i have seen are rediculious and i would never use the outfitters who charge those fees for any floats.
Most, if not all, of the private campgrounds will let you park your car there for a put in or take out.
Used to be $5 per car, may have gone up.
Good thing you’re going during the week. Missouri Whitewater Association held a family float there a few years ago on the weekend (never again) and I’m not kidding you when I say it took a solid 15 minutes before a break in the number of boats (mostly rafts) would let me wade back across the river.
There are public accesses at the Hwy. 21 bridge near Centerville on the West Fork, downstream from Lesterville off Hwy. 21, Peola Road to County Road 364, and at the K Highway Bridge. It’s 12 miles from the Centerville Access to the Lesterville Access, and 13 miles from Lesterville Access to Hwy. K. There are some other, informal and harder to get to accesses between Lesterville and Hwy. K.
However, the river shifted course a few years ago at the Lesterville public access, and unless it’s shifted back since I was there last, you have to carry or drag canoes for a third of a mile in a dry or nearly dry channel to get to the river.
The resorts in the area all charge about the same, and the main reasons they do so are because they have plenty of rental business and don’t really care to mess with private shuttles all that much, and because the shuttle from Lesterville to Hwy. K is a long one on winding roads. Ideally, if you could get the livery at Hwy. K to shuttle you up to Lesterville it would work well, but those people REALLY like to avoid doing shuttles.
Given the probable situation at the Lesterville Access, though, even if you do it yourself, you’re probably better off paying one of the resorts to access the river and park your car.
As Paddledad said, it’s an absolute zoo on weekends, and weekends tend to include Fridays. Monday through Thursday it’s a pleasant experience (usually).
We were the only ones on the river.
We were on the Black on Aug.2 and we were the only yaks on the river. No canoes. We did encounter 2-4 speed boats. Being my 5th time to kayak, I was pleased with the trip. It went really well and was a rather mild flowing river. We did about 5 miles in 2 hours. We took 2 ten minute breaks. Can't say where we put in/out, as it was private land. Put in somewhere below the lake at Piedmont.
A week later, we did Castor River at Marquand and it was a bit brisk and loads of fun. Again we were the only boaters, for whatever reason. I highly recommend the Castor. It's not as deep as the Black, but kayaks don't need a lot of depth. My Castor video gets interesting after a minute or so into the video. Again, we put in/out on private property.