Lumber River Trip Report, Sat Oct 31
- Section: Willoughby Road to US 74
River level: 2.65 feet at the Boardman guage, low but passable
Eleven paddlers floated the approximate 8 miles from Willoughby Road to US 74 on Saturday Oct 31. We had 5 canoes and 4 kayaks on this trip.
The weather was overcast with occasional rain spinkles several times during the trip and warm in te high 70's. The sun came out as soon as we reached the takeout at US 74.
Many kudos to the folks at Lumber River State Park for their efforts this summer in river clearing. This section has greatly benefited from those efforts and was readily navigable for it's entire length. We encountered one new fall that spanned the entire river and would have required a portage, but since I had my chainsaws I was able to cut a usable path through the tree and so the river remains open all the way.
The water was low and clear, we were able to see the sandy bottom in many places but nowhere did we drag bottom. There are a number of places in this section where the river has good fall making for a nice current. Omer tried a few of the side channels that looked promising but found that there was downfall and blockages in all of them. If you do this section, follow the biggest channels, they were easily recognizable by cut trees. We made the trip in about 3 1/2 hours, including a couple of stops.
Our biggest challenge was not having enough water to easily land our boats at Buck's Landing, but Piney Island picnic site and canoe camping was still accessible by canoe. Beaver activity is very heavy in this section but we did not see any beaver dams or lodges.
In spite of the occasional spitting of rain and relatively low water, this was a very good trip. The scenery was good and there was enough bends and twists and technicality to keep it interesting.
Hope to see some more members on the next paddle.