Manistee River

I am going to be doing my first solo canoe/camping trip this summer, and I think that I have decided on the Manistee.

I have called a few liveries, and they say that a good 3 day trip is from Sharon Bridge to Highway 131.

Has anybody ever done this stretch, and if so, do you have any good advice?

I have looked it up in Paddling Michigan, and it seems like it won’t take all of 3 days, but it’s hard for me to tell.

Also, if anybody has any other suggestions for a good 3 days of paddling, I would love to hear them. I would like to spend most of my tme in the canoe. Since I will be by myself, I don’t see much sense in sitting around a camp for several hours before turning in for the night.



I went from Sharon Bridge to hmmmm, not sure the name but probably near 131. Its been so long since i did it…about 30 years ago in fact. Its a beautiful stretch of river…scenic, not a lot of cabin… easy water…

caution on the sweepers along the bends,

if you like to fish bring a pole too.

I dont have much advice for you but i think you could do that quicker…any book or local will tell you the conservative time…

You could also do the ausable but you would have to portage… unless you got out at mio which is the first dam. I think easily 35mles a day on the manistee is easy to do. i use to do that on the ausable…

Several of us did a 2 day trip years ago along that stretch. I don’t remember the exact PI but we took out by 131. Easy water & slow to moderate current. Our guide book mentioned riffles but we saw virtually none. There weren’t a lot of cabins, but it seemed that they were always situated by the best camping spots. We ended up camping in a grove of pines. The things I remember most from that trip are a herd of deer thundering through our camp around 4 AM and a talking to a guy in a Sea Wind crossing the entire lower penninsula using the Manistee and Au Sable rivers.