If you have an odd number of people, you can sit an additional adult on the bottom of the canoe for an additional $10. Boardman River Bitner Road Species Description The Boardman River fish community in this location is fairly diverse. The cost for this service is $20 per vehicle and it can be done at either the Forks Campground or Brownbridge Pond. The river opened wide, bordered by reed beds, and we noticed signs advising boaters to stay within buoys marking a channel into the pond. The Boardman's upper tributaries rise near Kalkaska, Michigan, and its watershed drains an area of 295 sq. From Staff Reports. My family absolutely loves the outdoors and we also live on the Boardman River down stream. Boardman Brown Bridge Canoe Landing Take Garfield Road south of Traverse City to River Road (goes west) and Brownbridge Rd (goes east). Purchased over 12 years ago as a Northern Michigan getaway & future Building location . On Friday morning, after shuttling the vehicles, we paddled the second 12 mile leg of the Boardman. We opted to skip this segment because we were going to change campsites to the vicinity of the Sturgeon and Pigeon Rivers. Cass Road Bridge. You can bring coolers on the river with you, but glass is not permitted. We then paddled in the narrow channel, barely as wide as the canoe, along the edge of the reed bed and around the pond until we finally reached deeper water. We searched for and found Schecks State Campgrounds east of Kalkaska on Brown Bridge Road. The nearly 300 square mile Boardman River watershed is located in Grand Traverse and Kalkaska Counties in northwest Michigan. But please be advised that there is a tremendous amount of steering and navigation required for this river. If you put in at the forks and need a ride back up to your vehicle upon return there is still at $6 ride fee per person-and this is only a service that is offered if we have a shuttle headed up river at that time. In other words, we do not make special trips just to do a private transport. As long as we’re discussing the Boardman River, it’s also the site of one of the area’s nicest and most convenient paddling lakes for fall color: Boardman Lake, just a couple of blocks from downtown Traverse City The lake can be easily accessed by kayakers, too. Directions to Site Turning north for nine miles, it empties into Grand Traverse Bay at Traverse City. Join us on a KaBrew adventure any day of the week during our scheduled times (11:00 am - 3:00 pm and 3:30 pm - 7:30 pm). For the most part, you do not have to paddle to keep moving, the current will carry you along. When we finished each trip, we would put all the canoe gear in my car and lock the canoe to a tree. Items such as sunglasses, cameras, car keys, and jewelry have all been lost in the river at some point. Tree was our guide. Please note if you leave a canoe or kayak on the river we charge a $25 retrieval fee per unit. Consistent with our past experiences on open ponds, we had to paddle hard into a stiff headwind. guest-paddler, A self-supported trip created by We then drove back past our campsite to the put-in about 12 river-miles to the east. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Although we were able to overcome the hazard of the low water above Brown Bridge Dam, it could have been worse if we had gotten stuck far out in the reed beds and had to slog and bushwhack our way out. Please be certain that everything is in aluminum or plastic. The river does have a somewhat rocky bottom so a water shoe or sandal with heal strap might be a good idea. Our guide and the driver took us to the nature center where we began our paddle down the Boardman. We take our two dogs for long hikes on the state land while looking for new exciting finds that the woods have to offer. We also noticed a lot of kayak activity along the river at various access points. It is on the natural river act, meaning any trees and such that come down over the course of the year must remain in the water for fish habitat, unless they are completely obstructing the river at which point they are removed. The lower part of the river was mostly restored when they removed the dams. Rarely do we spot vehicles as we do not have an extra staff member available to do this most times. The beautiful Boardman River, birthplace of the Adams fly, starts east and south of Traverse City and ends as it flows into the west arm of Grand Traverse Bay in Lake Michigan. For instance the 4-mile canoe trip averages 1.5 hours float time and we give you an extra one (1) hour on top of that. Overall, we would rate the Boardman as one of the most enjoyable paddles of the six rivers that we tackled. Ranch Rudolf canoe tube rentals 6841 Brownbridge Road We offer 2 different options for canoe and kayak trips down the Boardman River. 6841 Brown Bridge Road, Traverse City, MI 49696, Adult and Young Adult Novice Horse Program. Only days after a new moon and away from urban light pollution, we had a spectacular view of the milky way. Boardman River The Boardman River is located in Grand Traverse and Kalkaska counties in Northwest Lower Michigan and includes 160 miles of river and tributary streams. We would drive back to Dons van and then drive both vehicles back and load up the canoe. We enjoy kayaking, gardening, hiking, and bird watching. Boardman River Put In And Take Out Locations For Float Trips While the Boardman River is endless on day trip put-in and pull-out destinations, we are going to focus on Ranch Rudolf (RR) to Traverse City sections of the river, starting from RR. Both options will be put in upstream and end at the Ranch. The closest public site is down river 1 mile (Schecks) or up river 4 miles (Forks.). And if you bring a beach towel with you we recommend leaving it in your car so you have something dry when you return. Be aware this is a river with changing conditions that include water falls, rapids, downed trees, and rocks. The Boardman River is located in Grand Traverse and Kalkaska counties in northwest lower Michigan. We take our two dogs for long hikes on the state land while looking for new exciting finds that the woods have to offer. This section of the Boardman River has cooler water temperatures and good sections of gravel can be a very productive stretch of river to trout fish in the early summer months. Boardman River Experience We’ll take your kayak upriver to Jack’s Landing and you’ll enjoy the Boardman River the way it was a hundred plus years ago before the … Outdoor activities in michigan. Children under 5 years old can sit on a parent’s lap to share a tube for no additional charge. People in northern Michigan have an appreciation for the Boardman River as it meanders through forests, fields and towns. Looking back I realize that we should have talked to the local kayakers about river conditions and hazards. On Thursday, September 9, we drove from Dons summer home in East Lansing to Kalkaska. The plan was for an August trip, but as it turned out, Dons wife Marilyn had back surgery so the trip was postponed until September. Moreover, there was no heat to contend with and no annoying insects. What we didnt know is that there are two Schecks campgrounds: one is an equestrian park and the second, nearby, is the regular park. Boardman River is a 11.9 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Traverse City, Michigan that features a river and is rated as moderate. My family absolutely loves the outdoors and we also live on the Boardman River down stream. This was the first of the challenges we would face in the following days. In 2007, my California There are a total of 287-square miles in the watershed, producing one-third of the water volume of Grand Traverse Bay in Traverse City and draining 182,800 acres of land. With the exception of the extreme lower river and three impoundments, the Boardman is an oligotrophic river system with excellent water quality characterized by cold temperatures, high dissolved oxygen concentrations, and nutrients provided by allochthonous inputs. That night the camp was pleasantly quiet. The pond was long and, because of low water, looked like a large abandoned gravel pit. Please read “The Boardman River” above for a further description of the river. Interesting facts: The Boardman River is considered one of the top ten trout fishing steams in Michigan. ), Please note Ranch Rudolf is not a public launch site or landing site. Paddling into a stiff breeze, we finally reached the takeout. You cannot park here to put in or take out of the river with your own canoes, kayaks, or tubes. Boardman River The Boardman River Map. Don prepared some tasty mac n cheese. An example of this is the 4-mile put in point lasts about 1 ½ hours by canoe or kayak but this same put in point lasts approximately 3 hours by tube. Should you lose, damage, or fail to return your rental equipment, prices are as follows. The river is also spring fed with temperatures averaging around 60 degrees. According to Don, the 2010 paddling trek would be quite different. It's time to let someone else enjoy this 10 acre property, with 265 ft frontage on South Branch of the Boardman River. Logan's Landing. September was arguably more desirable because the summer vacation season was over and the parks were empty. Maximum of 3 adults allowed per canoe. In 2007, my California paddling buddy Don Potter and I took on the challenge of paddling the Manistee River from its source north of Grayling to its end on Lake Michigan, a distance of 165 miles. Although we do not have any age restrictions on the river activities, we do not recommend canoeing or kayaking for children under 2 years old, pregnant women, or the novice who are fearful of getting wet or tipping over. The trail is rated as moderate and is accessible year-round. With children the maximum number allowed per canoe is 4 (2 adults and 2 children. In fact, often times you stand a good chance of seeing wildlife on the banks and in sky around you while traveling down it. Please be advised the current is fairly swift so sandals without a back strap or flip flops could get easily carried away by the current. At any rate we picked a campsite, paid the $6 per-person fee and set up camp in the equestrian park. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. After paddling between the two sets of buoys we headed for the center of the pond and paddled in the direction of the Dam house visible about 1/2 mile to the east. Turn left (east) and drive about 1/4 mile. We enjoy kayaking, gardening, hiking, and bird watching. For all trips we transport you up river, as far as the Forks Campground, 1/4 mile off of Supply Road. Tubing does tend to be easier than canoeing and kayaking because there is not as much of a threat of tipping over. During removal of one of the dams it burst and washed out a large section of the river. Near the top of Michigan's lower peninsula there is a fan-like array of navigable rivers, well known to paddlers, offering a variety of paddling challenges. We needed two vehicles: mine for parking at the takeout and his to deliver the canoe to the put-in. The information would have been useful to us had it been posted upriver. Prices from $45-90 Half Day – Starting at $45 including Kayak, Paddle, Life vest, and Shuttle Half Day Route Boardman to Burkhardt Known for: Lay park. If interested in un-timed trips please see the Canoe and Kayak page for details. From there we would drive to the campsite. ... kayaking and canoeing; For children under 5 years of age they can sit on a parents lap at no additional charge. It rises in the Mahan swamp in north central Kalkaska County and flows in a southwesterly direction for 40 miles. Boardman River & Boardwalk Traverse City Also See: >> Boardman River Canoe, Kayak, Tube Float Trips The Boardman River flows into the west arm of Grand Traverse Bay in Traverse City, Michigan. Most of the trail is in forested area on existing dirt paths and two-tracks. Our only minor concern was the water level in the rivers because late summer had been dry. There we saw a sign warning that the water level in the pond had been drastically reduced because of some unspecified danger. On occasion arrangements can be made ahead of time. The deposit price is $20 per canoe, $20 per kayak, and $10 per tube. Lower numbers of brook trout are found in this reach below where Sabin Dam used to be, but large brown trout that move in and out of Boardman Lake frequent this stretch, as well as steelhead, bass, and walleye in the spring time. Take a kayak trip along the Boardman River in Traverse City and stop along the way at some of the best craft breweries in Northern Michigan and you have what is called a KaBrew! However, there are a couple of stipulations. This project was funded, in part, by the Michigan Coastal Zone Management Program, Department of Environmental Quality Office of the Great Lakes and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. Please remember this is not a public launch or landing site. The river also twists and turns through the Boardman Valley and holds a very steady current. We strongly recommend not bringing anything with you do not want to get wet or take the chance of losing. With the recent removal of the dam at Brown Bridge Pond, we are not sending canoes or kayaks beyond the Ranch. Length 11.9 miElevation gain 32 ftRoute type Point to point Shumsky Rd Canoe Launch - Boardman River - Find info about paddling launch sites including directions, ammenities, & fees to plan your next paddling trip! This being said, there is always the possibility of tipping over, particularly in a kayak or in a canoe. Be sure to consult locals about water levels or river status. Typically by about age 5 or 6 it is more comfortable for both the parent and the child to put the child in their own “child size” tube. First, we have to have a run (rental) going. This can be a great alternative to canoeing or kayaking, especially to those families with small children. We put in below Brown Bridge Dam and paddled to Cass Road Dam near the Traverse City limits. It was a paddle from the nature center down the Boardman River and then a guided hike back to the nature center. The paddle, under the forest canopy, was pure pleasure until we reached the large pond above Brown Bridge Dam. Lat, Lon: 44.64695, -85.57976. The north and south branches of the river above the “Forks” consists of narrow channels, shallow riffles, overhanging brush and fallen trees which make these streams undesirable for recreational canoeing. Experience the Boardman River for the first time in 100 years. Again, the paddle was scenic, through a series of bends and twists, with some nice Class II rapids, until we reached Keystone pond above Cass Road Dam. If canoeing or kayaking, there is always a chance of getting wet should you tip over. Not a canoe or Kayak location, but excellent place to take a dip, enjoy wildlife, or perhaps hook an elusive trout . You will cross Arbutus Hill Road, and then the river itself. Third, we only transport up river from the Ranch. The Boardman River system drains a surface area of approximately 186,000 acres and includes about 130 linear miles of stream. For children under 12 years old there is no additional charge to sit in the bottom of the canoe. At the takeout we also had to struggle getting our gear and canoe up to the parking lot because the pond was low and the embankment, made up of collapsing sand and gravel, was steep. One of my favorite morning paddles is down the beloved Boardman River, a Traverse City treasure that passes right through the heart of town as it reaches the … All deposits must be paid in cash and you get them back when you return all of your equipment and are within your time parameters. Canoes and kayaks travel at close to the same rate, but tubes float much slower. You will notice with regard to pricing we have a rental charge and a deposit. If you are coming with a group, whether large or small, and you hope to stay together as a group on the river you will all have to choose either canoeing and kayaking or tubing. Much of the river in the vicinity of the access site is wadable, and there is a canoe/kayak launch on site. Paddling experience is necessary for this fun and lively paddle. Partial contact recommendations — which OKs activities like wading, fishing, and paddling — persist at Sunset Park Beach and the lower Boardman River. We made the trek during July when there was a good water level and the only annoyance was occasional biting flies (black and deer). Attributes: For the most part the water averages knee to waist deep, but there are scattered deeper pockets throughout sometimes reaching 5-7 feet in depth. For the most part, you do not have to paddle to keep moving, the current will carry you along. Beautiful River,Excellent recreation opportunities, camping, fishing, hiking, tubing, kayaking, canoeing. We drove west to Brown Bridge Dam, the takeout for our paddle, and parked my car. Otherwise, it’s one person to a tube. It was quite an adventure, taking 6 days, hauling gear for riverbank camping, and portaging around two damns. It is fine to go bare foot as well. This means those in the tubes would never be with the rest of the group. But please be advised that there is a tremendous amount of steering and navigation required for this river. Because of their proximity to each other, the plan was to establish base camps from which we could drive to the rivers. Kayaks: The kayaks are all single seaters, designed for only 1 person at a time. "Canoeing Michigan Rivers" by Jerry Dennis, by Please note most trips are timed trips. The river also twists and turns through the Boardman Valley and holds a very steady current. A couple sitting at a picnic table near the edge of the pond found our frustrating struggle amusing. Tubes: All of the tubes are open bottom single seaters. We saw none and Don dragged the canoe backward until we were on the very edge of the reed beds, the only place with a decent current and deep enough to float the canoe. TRAVERSE CITY — Experienced kayaker Robin Bahle recently took her first paddling trip on the Boardman River. We never recommend tying the tubes together because with the various trees and downed branches in the river it can be very easy to get hung up in narrow or congested areas when tied together. Don drove his van carrying his 17 Wenonah kevlar canoe and I drove my car. We always recommend leaving these sorts of items in your locked vehicle and your car keys safely with us. The Boardman River is truly a beautiful and natural river. Below that Dam the river runs for another four miles, winding through backyards of the city, before emptying into the bay. Some people wear bathing suits and others wear shorts and t-shirts. All of these arrangements must be set up with the general store beforehand. It is much easier to simply have a parent rest their feet on the child’s tube to keep together, but to easily be able to separate with short notice if needed. Keep in mind you want something you can get wet in. Don got out and we looked for deeper water. We met our guide at their building in Clinch Park. The Boardman River runs westward from Kalkaska to Traverse City where it empties into Grand Traverse Bay on Lake Michigan. He was the namesake of the Boardman river, previously named Ottawa river. Each day, hundreds of people – especially kids – will congregate along the Boardman River at 118 Hall Street, in the city’s warehouse district. Since it was early afternoon we set off for the Boardman River to do the first half of our paddle. The Boardman River runs westward from Kalkaska to Traverse City where it empties into Grand Traverse Bay on Lake Michigan. The Boardman River. We do have both adult and children’s sizes available. After we began our paddle it became apparent why the river was so popular. History: In 1847, Captain Horace Boardman bought land on the Grand Traverse Bay. Boardman Lake, Traverse City: The River TC outfitter will hook you up with everything needed to enjoy a three-hour self-guided trip from Boardman Lake up into the Boardman River… We try to accommodate private transports for $6 per tube and $15 per canoe or per kayak. This had the advantage of allowing us to canoe without hauling our camping gear. As for what to wear, the choice is yours. Boardman River: Shumsky to Beitner is a 4.6 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Traverse City, Michigan that features a river. For sale: $69,900. Instead of a long paddle down one river, this one would involve one-day paddles down six of Michigan's fastest rivers. All trips will end right here at the Ranch. Canoes: The canoes are all double seaters, designed for 2 people. Please help keep the river clean and beautiful by being certain nothing gets left behind in the river or on the banks. What is The Boardman: A River Reborn? If you exceed your scheduled time back by more than one (1) hour, deposit not refunded. guest-paddler. How Many People Per Canoe, Kayak, or Tube. A river of this quality is a globally rare resource and a priceless community asset. If you are tubing you will be sitting in an open bottom tube-you will get wet. Second, we have to have room on our trailer meaning we would never turn away a rental to do a private transport. The Boardman River Trail Committee, composed of various partners and spearheaded by Richard Naperala, formed in 2010 to explore feasibility of developing a 24-mile trail that follows the Boardman River Valley from Traverse City to the North Country Trail (NCT). Kayaking + Brewery Tours = KaBrew. Proper care and stewardship of this gem are critical to its long-term health. This paddle will take you through the old Sabin Dam site which now includes two light rapids, followed immediately by a slow water paddle through a spectacular cedar forest bursting with wildlife. The entire area was a forest wonderland, heavily wooded with cedar and assorted pines, spruces and aspen. miles through 130 miles of river and tributaries. If this season is anything like past years, there will be lots of laughter, jumping up and down, pointing of fingers and juvenile squealing. The river, close to populous Traverse City, is 20-30 feet wide, with crystal clear water, a depth of 2-3 feet, a gravel base, tight bends and twists, and a few rapids. It wasnt long before the water was so shallow the canoe became stuck. Only if you have paid for a transport can you leave your vehicle on-site for when you return. Whatever you decide to wear on the river, it is always a good idea to have a change of clothes when you return. You may be looking for a kayak or stand up paddleboard (SUP) to explore the beautiful blue waters of the bay or negotiate the bends and curves of the Boardman River as it meanders its way through the historic downtown business district of Traverse City. 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