Starting off the morning was a little slow. My routine is out of practice and has never included the tweaks of river life. It was more than an hour from when I crawled out of bed to when I left.
Before getting too far, I forgot that yesterday I passed the first named tributary. Sucker Brook was about the same size as the river. It dumped in with a milky sediment that didn’t mix right away. It was cool to watch for a minute.
Back to this morning, I repacked some of my bags since they had been loaded in a haste. Then I tossed them in the canoe. Getting out was tricky due to the soft mud that sent me swimming the night before, but I was at least ready for it today.
Off down the river I went. The first few miles were nice paddling. Then I arrived at Vekin’s dam and portage. I was expecting and old concrete dam, but nope. It was another beaver dam. This one had quite a head height. I saw the portage off to the left and proceeded to move all my stuff along the 50 yard trail. The broken portage wheels wouldn’t have helped much here anyway.
I switched to the kayak paddle for a while because the next 4 miles were “Class I rapids”. I figured it would give me a little better handling if I needed something quick. The rapids mostly meant my boat scraped a lot of submerged rocks and I had to get out and walk a bunch.
I was grateful when that section ended because I could finally stay in the boat and not drench my feet. Next up though was a narrow channel surrounded by tall grass with a bunch of quick turns.
There was noticeable current in most of this section. Around the turns it would try to throw you into the sides to get a nice faceful of grass.
A little while into this I could hear water falling. As I came around the corner, another beaver dam. There was no place to portage because of the thick, tall grass. I noticed some grass in the middle was matted down and about the width of a boat. I guess the thing to do is go over?
It was tricky to get out on top of the dam. Then I slowly pulled my boat over and into the water below. At this point I was done with beavers. They were not, however, done with me. I had two more dams to deal with.
Arriving at camp was really nice. I was tempted to go on, to the next site only 1.8 miles further, but it was too good to pass up. It had mowed grass and picnic tables, a nice landing.
I walked up the hill to see if I could get cell signal. No luck, but on a whim I checked for wifi since I could see a house not too far away. Thank you Riggs family for having an unlocked network. Hopefully I will not regret stopping early, because tomorrow is going to be a long day…
Total Mileage: 15.4