One of my local put-ins, Riverview Park on the St Joseph river in SW MI. The river is especially wide and open in this area, just a couple miles upstream from Lake Michigan. Nice open water with no shore ice and temps in the 20’s so apparently warm compared to Wyoming. But strong gusts, and I’ve had a couple of memorable experiences with wind just upstream from this put-in in the past, so hard pass.
Better photographed than paddled in.
Pics taken out the window of my warm running vehicle.
Thats the way it should be
It takes special equipment and rescue skills in those conditions to paddle safely. Most people don’t have either.
In the West, the best run off and flows are from around late March to early June. For mountain rivers that means cold water with occasional snow. We used to run our local river the Truckee in California above Reno a lot. People had full wetsuits since the water was around 40-43 degrees. We had some swimmers and they were okay in those conditions. Now thirty years later it is not so appealing. You hope we have all gained some judgement as we have aged.
The temperature of the St Joseph dropped from 52 to 38 in the past 7 days. Pretty sobering. We also get big flows in the Spring when the first warm spell melts the snow; I think peak flow was a little over 10000 cfs in late Feb.