A Great river trip

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A Great river trip

Postby Bingo001 » Wed Feb 18, 2009 7:54 pm

Last summer I took my troop on a canoe/fishing trip down the Youghiogheny river in south west Pennsylvania. The stretch we traveled was a fairly quiet stretch of river with only a few chop chops in it and several deep pools.
I took the safety afloat class and stuck to the rules. The fishing was terrific! We caught everything! Big small mouth, channel cats, rock bass, walleye, sauger, sheep head and hybrid striper as well as a few bluegill and crappie.
The outfitter provides canoes and transportation up the river to the put in point. Anchors, seats and life jackets are also provided. There is a small store and bait shop where you can get everything else you need including a 1,3,7 day or one year fishing license. All you need to do is get in the water and drift back to camp.
This is a Trip I highly recommend to any Scout troop that can make it. We used the Youghiogheny River Canoe Outfitter in West Newton Pa. They were very friendly, accommodating and gave us a discount because we were Scouts. He also has a large flat grassy area with water and a porta-john that he let us camp on for the weekend without charge.
There is another outfitter further up the river in Perryopolis but they are not as friendly or as quick to please. The outfitter at Yough. outfitters really went out of his way for us. You can find them on the Internet.
The only warning I have is that there a few rope swings along the banks on the way down the river. Stay off them. We saw a man ( not with our group) get tangled up in one as he swung out to the river. He took a lot of skin off his rib cage and may have hurt himself even worse than that. I didn't get the details.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby biglou » Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:37 pm

There are several good ones here in my area. You can go on the Chinklacamoose Canoe trip on the west branch of the Susquehanna. There is a 5 or 6 part segment patch that you can earn for completing that trip from the Bucktail Council.

Another one is the Clarion River. There are 2 state parks that you can camp at. Cook's Forest and Clear Creek. Both are very nice. The Clarion is a nice easy river with only 3 sets of rapids that are not very challenging but fun to go through. It is very nice for newer boys to canoe on and their are plenty of outfitters nearby that you can rent equipment from.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby kwildman » Thu Feb 19, 2009 4:41 pm

Clarion River i would recommend Loves Canoe. http://www.ncentral.com/~dlove/lcanoe.htm

This is an easy river but if the water is down like it was last year it is not soo easy and sections are barely passable. I guess they wont rent canoes if the water level is 2.5' and it was 2.7' when we went through. Nice camping areas for troops between the Y and Z rapids.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby Bill Pitcher » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:42 pm

Another great river is the Delaware, on the New Your and Pennsylvania border. There are many great 5 - 6 mile segments that you can put awsome river trips together on. Great camping on the banks at NYC'c Ten Mile River Scout Camp. Lander's canoe/kayak rentals provides a scout discount on boats which come with PFD's, dry bags and instruction, and more camping spots at their many lean-to spots. plus, they shuttle you to where ever you start and finish.Water is always moving, with many rapids that the scouts LOVE. Be careful in the Spring though, high, rough water can be dangerous. We go in the fall, 2 or 3rd. week in September. We make it a manditory parent/son trip. Parents do all the cooking so that they get to learn about and use the troop gear. And yes, some boys have only a single parent with other children in the house, so old guys, like me, whose sons are long gone, provide the adult partner in the canoe. But you know what, the parents and sons LOVE it. We (the TC) then hook 'em and got'em!!!
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby biglou » Fri Feb 20, 2009 1:17 am

I seem to be in a nice area for the outdoors. Not too far away is French Creek. French Creek starts up near Erie, PA is a good stream to canoe down. Custologa Town Scout Reservation is located along the banks. But that is a decent hall depending if you start above Waterford or Union City. I have also been told that the upper portions take longer to complete than what you might think. French Creek eventually meets up with the Allegheny River at Franklin.

The Allegheny is another river where I want to go canoeing. I think that would be a blast. Going from the Allegheny to the Ohio then to the Missisippi. Well, then again, I have not hit the Powerball Lottery so I cannot afford that. LOL

Camp Olmstead also has one of the better waterfronts in the Northeast. Kinzua Reservoir is a great place to go camping and hiking. I believe there are several treks in that area that are combination hiking/canoeing that would be fun to take a Troop on. Chief Cornplanter Council had the DUDE (Design your Ultimate Dynamic Experience) treks. They might still have the plans for it if you ask. Plus it is also neat to see a Bald Eagle swoop down over the lake. I saw that twice on camping excursions there. That was one of the neatest things that I have ever seen.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby Bill Pitcher » Fri Feb 20, 2009 8:51 am

10-4 on the bald eagle, Big Lou. I've seen them on the Delaware River trips our troop has taken. We had 2 of them sitting on a railroad bridge that crossed the Delaware, and as we approached, they flew down and right along side our floatilla. Pretty neat for kids AND adults to see that!
Another great place to take troops canoeing is in Northern NY's Adirondack Park. There is the Fulton Chain (a series of lakes and ponds all connected by streams and/or carry's), which is the begining of the Northern Canoe route through NY, VT, Quebec, and Maine. And just west of Lake Placid (of Olympic fame) is the Fish Creek Ponds area of the Saranac's. Again, lakes and ponds all connected by small streams and pretty short carries. Lots of camping in both areas for troops.Most of this area is slack water, though, so the paddelers have to "work!"
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby kc9901mom » Fri Nov 09, 2012 10:33 pm

Anyone in here been on a River trip down the Rio Grande River either in Big Bend NP, Big Bend SP, or Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River?

I know that this kind of trip would be best in late winter (early March)/early Spring or late Fall (Nov.)/early Winter (Dec.) and would be more suitable for 2nd year or older scouts. Any troop considering this trip would also need an International Tour Activity Permit because the Mexican Border is defined as the deepest channel in the middle of the river.

I would absolutely allow my children to go on such a trip but I would also go and I would ensure that my children and myself had passports and/or pass cards before going (as a safety measure).

I have been to Big Bend once but I have not been down the Rio Grande or even near the banks. I am aware of the Mountain Lions, Black Bears, Snakes, Desert environment, etc. I have also done extensive research and downloaded just about all the documents from Big Bend NP and Rio Grande Wild Scenic River. I am more interested in whether or not any scouts/scouters have embarked upon such a journey and want to know the "good, bad, and ugly".
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby biglou » Sat Nov 10, 2012 8:17 pm

When I went to Philmont in 1990, we went white water rafting on the Arkansas River above the New River Gorge. THAT WAS AMAZING.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby VenturingL » Thu Nov 15, 2012 2:10 pm

We looked into a Rio Grande/Big Bend trip, but decided against it - cost of passports and safety concerns for being that close to the border nixed it. With all precautions, it's still a big, easily crossed area - both for people & people moving drugs.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby mt_goodrich » Thu Nov 15, 2012 6:07 pm

I would have to agree with Venturing L on this. My troop and crew looked into it as well and also decided it wasn't worth the extra expense of passports and security concerns.

I work for a federal law enforcement agency and made contact with counterparts in that area and was told "don't even think about it". That is all I needed to be told.
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby biglou » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:57 am

What about the Pacific Northwest? Aren't there some good rivers up there that would be easily navigable?
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Re: A Great river trip

Postby FrankJ » Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:00 pm

A lot of good rivers in the Atlantic South East. Most of them pretty flat so it does not take the highest skill set to trip on. We have taken the occasional trip out to Colorado. Have always used guides for that.

Northern Tier on the Boundary Waters in MN is a great trip. Definitely the greatest wilderness experience of the Boy Scout HA camps.
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Re: Rio Grande

Postby topshot » Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:51 am

mt_goodrich wrote:I work for a federal law enforcement agency and made contact with counterparts in that area and was told "don't even think about it". That is all I needed to be told.
I don't doubt that, but I'm surprised they make no mention of this concern on the Rio Grande website where other federal areas I looked at near the border do, including Big Bend NP. FWIW, neither mentions needing a passport. I'm planning to go with my son some Christmas. Way too far for our troop to do.
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