I don’t do or know the Pine Barrens. But if downed trees are in the program and meandering channels we have those in spring runs, swamps and the upper ends of rivers. The trees are one of the reasons we carry saws with us. I know one paddler that has carries a chain saw in his tandem. Personally I don’t like portaging no matter how short. Lifting over trees is not my desire but there are times when action is necessary.
One day we decided on a club paddle to paddle up the Ortega River in Jacksonville to see how far we could go. We went under the neighborhood bridge, the interstate bridge and under the highway into the swamp. Maybe a mile later the channel fanned out and became unreadable. We decided we were way into the swamp and couldn’t go any farther…then a resident behind us and through the screen of trees started up a lawn mower. Well we couldn’t go any farther any way.
But you can turn a sea kayak nicely if given room and current doesn’t take you. On the way out awaiting for others to get out of one of the smaller spaces I went into a tree. Out came the pruning saw and I cut my way out. Raisins took the attached picture as he kept his sea kayak out of the problem.