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Discussion Starter #1
I have got some time scheduled off in August and my wife would like to try out a multiday paddling trip. I have done quite a few of these in the past but I currently do not own kayaks or a canoe so I am looking for recommendations in the Mid-Atlantic area to rent for a trip. I have had good experiences on the west branch of the Susquehanna but the August time frame is hit or miss for water levels on that section.

I know that there are some avid paddlers that frequent the forum and the EOC is a consistent go to resource for even keeled advice (boat humor.... ha ha). Any experiences or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!
 

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Sounds like my kind of get away!!!

Sorry I don't have any recommendations for the Mid-Atlantic region. There is the Big South Fork in KY/TN that is really great and full of adventure. Missouri has the Current River in the Ozarks that is a lot of fun but that is pretty far from you in PA.

Would love to paddle up in your neck of the woods someday.
 

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Whitewater or flatwater?

There is not a lot of multi-day whitewater in the mid-atlantic or southeast. August tends to be right in the heart of no water season. Long after spring rains and a bit too early for hurricane season. You might be able to put something together on a large drainage like the Potomac. Just make sure you know where the dams and other death traps are.

If you are looking for moving water and want to rent gear, you will probably have to settle for hitting up one of the dam release heavy tourist areas. See Ohiopyle PA (Yough river), around Bryson City NC (Nantahala), or somewhere near the Ocoee. You might also find somewhere to rent up near the Deerfield River or near Zoar Gap, but I have no personal experience with boating in the North East.
 

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Consider the DELMARVA Peninsula

Non better for sea kayaking and since much is on the outer banks or Chesapeake and tribs not affected as much by seasonal water changes (although tidal, which necessitates some planning).

See:
MD - http://www.dnr.state.md.us/outdoors/boating.html

VA - Seaside Water Trail is great (bring DEET)
http://www.deq.state.va.us/coastal/seasidewatertrail/
http://www.deq.state.va.us/coastal/seasidewatertrail/trailmap.html

Onana**** Creek is fun and Onana**** a good base of ops
http://www.onan****.org/kayaking/

Never rented, so can not make a recommendation, but there outfitters all over the DELMARVA.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
thank you to all for the ideas. I am shooting more for flat water (Class I-III) on this first trip because I would like there to be more trips to follow :D. (I probably should have specified that in my first post.)I wish that I could schedule earlier in the season but the flow of business does not usually allow it.

I am not opposed to driving south to make this happen and the limited reading that I have done suggest that the Current river in MO may prove to be an option. I think I am going to have to set things in stone a little closer to the date and depending on what the rainfall trend has been. The Gauly looks like great fun but that may have to be a later trip once she is more comfortable on the water. I am not sure that I would get the ok to toss her into allot of class IV and V stuff this time out, especially with names like "pure screaming hell". It has definitely been bookmarked though!

I will continue to look into these options as time allows so thanks for what is here and yet to come.
 

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I had a great time on the Current and you can set up a trip for all kinds of lengths. Scenery is great and the water always seems to be flowing and cold. I got to see a golden eagle fly overhead about 30 feet away. Very majestic. Cool side hikes to caves and springs along the way too. Not just paddling.

If you decide to go that route give me a PM and I will find some more details for you.

I went last year with a class from my University and had to skip a lot of the smaller nicer campsites because we had to find the larger gravel bars that could handle the group of 13.
 

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If you don't want to drive all the way to Missouri for the Current..............
you could try BrandyWine over in Wilmington, De

http://www.wildernesscanoetrips.com/trips.dws

Trips were nice from what I remember back when I lived in MD................
 

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If you are up for a little road trip the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is pretty much our back yard. There are several outfitters in Ely that rent canoes/kayaks and gear or you can go on a guided trip with support. The BWCA requires a permit for entry that you can apply for online but, there are plenty of interconnected lakes outside of the BWCA that you don't need a permit for.
Here are some links.
http://www.boundarywaterscanoearea.com/tripplanning/reservations.htm

http://www.canoecountry.com/permits/

http://www.highadventurecanoetrips.com/bwca-permit-information.html

http://www.bwca.cc/quetico/Queticopermits.htm

http://redrockoutfitting.com/bwcapermits/bwcapermits.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If you are up for a little road trip the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is pretty much our back yard.
I actually spent my honeymoon in the Boundary Waters region of MN. Certainly on my list of places to get back to but the drive time would be a killer for this trip. 22+ hours one way would mean about 4 days in round trip drive time. I have never really successfully pushed past 12 hours at a time without ruining myself for the day after. I used to make Nashville in one shot but I knew that I had barbecue and beer waiting for me.

currently reading up on the DelMarVa options. thanks B1ke Box!
 

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Dwg

Check out the Delaware Water Gap, I spent a day there a few years back. I rented a kayak from a place and the river we took had campsites all along it. I was actually thinking of doing it again this summer, but making it a long weekend.
 

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Did you go yet? I am just getting into kayaking in the last few weeks so sorry so late. Don't know where you will be but Susquehanna River has a lot of tours and events daily and Endless Mountain area around Laceyville and Tunkhannock has trips. I am renting one this weekend for 45 bucks for saturday thru monday afteroon to try it out at our state park and then a bunch of us are planning a trip down the Susquehanna. Show us picks and let us know how your trip was!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Did you go yet? I am just getting into kayaking in the last few weeks so sorry so late. Don't know where you will be but Susquehanna River has a lot of tours and events daily and Endless Mountain area around Laceyville and Tunkhannock has trips. I am renting one this weekend for 45 bucks for Saturday through Monday afternoon to try it out at our state park and then a bunch of us are planning a trip down the Susquehanna. Show us picks and let us know how your trip was!
Water levels held up and we did in fact get to do approx 54 miles of the West Branch of the Susquehanna last week, 8/11 - 8/13. We started our trip in Shawville and paddled to Keating. Today is actually my first day back in the office and I tend to avoid computers when I am on vacation so I will have a few pics to post later this evening.

I certainly underestimated the amount of ground that we could cover in a day because my previous trips have not been so gracious for constant river speed. We actually almost finished the trip a day early because of some ambitious paddling to make up lost time after waiting out some pretty nasty rain. Our daily mileages were about 21 on Tues., 27 on Wed., and the final 6 on Thurs. There were very few flat water sections and for the most part we could have bobbed along at about 3mph by only paddling to correct the direction of the boat.The river was about 2.4 ft at the meter at Karthaus meter (about the half point) and the same meter was just above 2.6 when we finished. Any lower and I think we would have been dragging along for quite a few sections of the trip. Conditions being what they were, we only had to carry through one section that was just too low to run, but that was really only about 50yds. We traveled pretty light in an attempt to keep the boat higher in the water and I think that may have reduced the scrapes as well. The guy/shop that we rented from (http://www.mccrackencanoe.com/rental.htm) said that their season is often over by now but the river levels have really been holding up well this year. I highly recommend this shop if you are planning on doing anything paddle sport related in that section of PA. The owner is a wealth of knowledge and an all around nice guy to deal with. He was extremely flexible about arrival/pickup times and he takes meticulous care of his rental boats. We rented a We-No-Nah Northfork which is a 16'9" rotomolded canoe that was stable and had more than enough capacity for our trip. It looked like it had only seen the water a handful of times. On the drive back to the shop he told me that they have a few of the 15'9" models on order for next season so it sounds like they turn over their rental fleet frequently.

The trip was an overall success for determining if my wife would enjoy multiple days on the water and primitive camping. She had a great time, despite the rain, and by the end of the trip was contemplating the pros and cons of buying a single canoe vs two kayaks even though she has minimal seat time in kayaks. I will post some pics when I get the chance.
 

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Very glad you had a great time. It is very easy to underestimate traveling speed on moving water. That size boat is perfect for camping and play.

As for canoe vs. kayak, one is just about always cheaper than two. I would love to add a kayak or two to my fleet but the canoe is very easy to pack and unpack at campsite/river's edge. You can also use a canoe to go on firewood scouting trips when camping on flat water. Go solo in a canoe and drop anchor in a cove of a lake and take a little nap!;-)
 

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Thanks so much for your helpful info! I was actually looking online at McCracken for information. We have a Potomac 14.6 canoe and are having a blast at some local state lakes. Loving the sunset trips and scenery. Never been up so close to blue herons before! Makes for amazing summer nights. We never ended up renting the kayaks that weekend. They didn't have anything left to rent to us that would have worked with me, my hubby and 9 year old. So the canoe for now but I'm researching kayaks and definately want to get one or 2 for next spring. The canoe is better for my husband and son to fish or me and my son to piddle around the lake. Too tippy for the 3 of us. So I'm thinking maybe get a kayak and I can join them on the lake and we can take turns with the kayak. I was talking to a very nice helpful guy the other night from Susquehanna River Trails. http://www.susquehannarivertrail.org/
Got great ideas from some trail guides he gave me. He also recommended Endless Mountain Outfitters and they have what looks like fun trips and rental and sales on the northern section of the river. http://endlessmountainoutfitters.com/
Maybe we will meet up someday following the current!
Have fun!
Kim
"let the river be your guide"
 
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