Via the St. Croix River Association:
The St. Croix River Association is now accepting registrations for their annual river paddle, June 11-17. The six day adventure will cover 92 miles of the Namekagon River, from Cable to Danbury, WI. The Namekagon, which feeds into the St. Croix River, is part of the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, a National Park.
The registration fee is $375, which covers shuttles, transportation of gear along the route, six nights of camping, evening educational programs and 5 meals. The deadline to register is May 1. The trip is limited to 80 paddlers and usually fills months in advance. In the past three years about 300 people have participated. The youngest was 18 months old, and the oldest 87.
“Expect to unplug and reconnect with the natural world,” says Deb Ryun, executive director of the St. Croix River Association. “We do the organizing — all you have to do is show up with your gear and some food and have fun. You’ll challenge yourself, build lasting relationships, see an abundance of wildlife and stunning scenery, and learn more about this wild and scenic river.”
“It’s the friendships, the beauty of the surroundings and the complete relaxation that I look forward to each time,” says paddler Leta Johnson. “The ability to take time and just enjoy, to laugh, and to understand that what I am really looking for is just outside.”
This year’s journey promises a diverse paddling experience. The Namekagon River is primitive and remote, at times very narrow and wild. Other reaches flow through more populated areas. As it nears the confluence of the St. Croix River, the Namekagon runs wider and slower. The paddle will meet the St. Croix River on the final day.
The 2016 paddle will be the sixth of a tradition started in 2011, when paddlers traveled 17 days down the length of the St. Croix to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the St. Croix River Association, a non-profit whose mission is to protect, restore and celebrate the St. Croix River and its watershed.
More information and registration is available on the SCRA Paddles website at www.scrapaddle.org, including a daily itinerary, a map of the route, and lodging options.
Local sponsors who help make the trip possible include Xcel Energy, 45 Degrees, the St. Croix Casino, the Cable Area Chamber of Commerce, Seeley, Wisconsin, Comfort Suites Hayward, Camp Namekagon, Log Cabin Resort in Trego, and the National Park Service.