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  1. #1
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    Canoeable river systems in MT/ID?

    Want to try to spend some time with my pops before he is too old. We used to do canoe trips when I was younger on the east coast. We did the Delaware from Hancock NY to Frenchtown NJ when I was like 12. 250 miles. Did alot of the Susquehana too.

    My dad is pretty old school so he would only want to canoe. Rafts are not his speed at all. Not pure enough I guess. I feel the same way, although it seems canoes are super rare on any water that isn't a lake out here. This limits us alot because flows have to be low enough to have whitewater pretty calm, but not so low that we are dragging bottom everywhere. Camping along the way kinda deal. Taking our time. 2-3 days tops.

    Suggestions?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Well there's this little river that runs through Idaho called the Snake.

    Snake River in Idaho


    Easy canoe trip, no whitewater

    If you want to come further west I would suggest the Yakima River Canyon. Highest concentration of raptors in the state and high basalt walls. Really beautiful. An easy paddle. Places to stay along the way. Here are some links but the section I'm thinking of that goes through the canyon is quiet. Mind you I've never canoed it but have driven the canyon many times. I think you can put in at Ellensberg and get out before you have to portage at the east end of the canyon (where you exit the Yakima Canyon near Selah) - that itself would be a pleasant paddle.


    Yakima River in Washington

    Yakima River, Washington State From Ellensburg to the Columbia River
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  3. #3
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    Lower Madison or Missouri come to mind, although I've not run either.
    Something about the wrinkle in your forehead tells me there's a fit about to get thrown
    And I never hear a single word you say when you tell me not to have my fun
    It's the same old shit that I ain't gonna take off anyone.
    and I never had a shortage of people tryin' to warn me about the dangers I pose to myself.

    Patterson Hood of the DBT's

  4. #4
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    LOL!! Check out this review for the Snake river (why do I read this with a Russian accent?):

    Name:  snakereview.png
Views: 261
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    Kindness is a bridge between all people

    Dunkiní Donuts Worker Dances With Customer Who Has Autism

  5. #5
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    Missouri River near Craig MT would be ideal, just north of Helena.

    Gallatin River from Four Courners to Three Forks.

    Madison River from Bear Trap to Three Forks.

    The Smith River, of course. Permit by lottery...

    Yellowstone River from Livingston to Big Timber.

    Bitterroot River from Hamilton to Missoula.

    Flathead River from Dixon to Thompson Falls.
    "Zee damn fat skis are ruining zee piste !" -Oscar Schevlin

    "Hike up your skirt and grow a dick you fucking crybaby" -what Bunion said to Harry at the top of The Headwaters

  6. #6
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    Watch for strainers on gallatin below four corners.

    Yellowstone is always a good bet.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry View Post
    Missouri River near Craig MT would be ideal, just north of Helena.

    Gallatin River from Four Courners to Three Forks.

    Madison River from Bear Trap to Three Forks.

    The Smith River, of course. Permit by lottery...

    Yellowstone River from Livingston to Big Timber.

    Bitterroot River from Hamilton to Missoula.

    Flathead River from Dixon to Thompson Falls.
    There are a bunch of good day trips on the Mo. Wolf Creek Angler runs shuttles.

    Yankee Jim is the only whitewater stretch of the Yellowstone in Paradise Valley. Below that itís a mellow float in beautiful country. I have friends who do it with young kids.

    The Clearwater is a great day trip.

    There are some classic prairie river paddles, too.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by evasive_MT View Post
    There are some classic prairie river paddles, too.
    Missouri River: put in at Fort Benton and canoe down to.... How many days did you say ? That would be an awesome multi day trip.
    "Zee damn fat skis are ruining zee piste !" -Oscar Schevlin

    "Hike up your skirt and grow a dick you fucking crybaby" -what Bunion said to Harry at the top of The Headwaters

  9. #9
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    The Jefferson from Cardwell to Three Forks is a fun float. Clark Fork river around Superior to below St. Regis.

  10. #10
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    OP: we have you lined up with 10 or 15 years of trips with your Dad, and this thread is still on its first page. Lots more to go. This is Montana after all.
    "Zee damn fat skis are ruining zee piste !" -Oscar Schevlin

    "Hike up your skirt and grow a dick you fucking crybaby" -what Bunion said to Harry at the top of The Headwaters

  11. #11
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    Thanks everyone. My dad is obsessed with Lewis and Clark and has read pretty much every book he can find about them. Only fitting he paddles some of the water he has been reading about.

  12. #12
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    Get a smith cancellation


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    I rip the groomed on tele gear

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by detrusor View Post
    Get a smith cancellation


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    Itís not boat dragging flows right now? ESP through the farming areas?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    Thanks everyone. My dad is obsessed with Lewis and Clark and has read pretty much every book he can find about them. Only fitting he paddles some of the water he has been reading about.
    So youíre going to pull that canoe up these rivers?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2FUNKY View Post
    So youíre going to pull that canoe up these rivers?
    He's not THAT obsessed.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry View Post
    Missouri River: put in at Fort Benton and canoe down to.... How many days did you say ? That would be an awesome multi day trip.
    Yeah, there are a lot of those opportunities. Havenít done any myself. I have friends who enjoyed the Marias.

    OP- you might look for the Paddling Montana Falcon Guide.

    Iíve canoed most of the Jefferson above Cardwell for work. Really pretty, too. But it will get dewatered during a hot irrigation season.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    Thanks everyone. My dad is obsessed with Lewis and Clark and has read pretty much every book he can find about them. Only fitting he paddles some of the water he has been reading about.
    Google "wild and scenic missouri river"
    And the days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations
    Well, I have really good days - Ray Wylie Hubbard

  18. #18
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    Ft. Benton to James Kipp looks sweet. I hunted up there in the fall. Gorgeous but not "classic" western mountain country.

    Clark Fork looks so nice. Drove over a million times recently going back and forth to Kellogg. Can you hear the highway most the time though?

  19. #19
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    Smith does look ideal, but being able to plan on a "sure thing" dates wise would be better since he will be flying out for the trip. Are there many cancellations?

  20. #20
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    I would definitely recommend the lower Flathead over the Clark Fork for (a) fewer roads (b) better water quality and (c) better scenery. Check this stretch out...https://www.bivy.com/adventures/us/m...on-877449..and you could easily continue past Dixon if you wanted.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by RootSkier View Post
    I would definitely recommend the lower Flathead over the Clark Fork for (a) fewer roads (b) better water quality and (c) better scenery. Check this stretch out...https://www.bivy.com/adventures/us/m...on-877449..and you could easily continue past Dixon if you wanted.
    That looks awesome. Flows still good in Mid-September? I know we have a chance of cold weather, but probably very quiet on the river?

  22. #22
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    Yes. Itís a big river.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    Ft. Benton to James Kipp looks sweet. I hunted up there in the fall. Gorgeous but not "classic" western mountain country.

    Clark Fork looks so nice. Drove over a million times recently going back and forth to Kellogg. Can you hear the highway most the time though?
    Superior area to Regis it goes away from the highway for a large part of it. The flathead is a great float per conundrums recco. Forgot all about that one.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    That looks awesome. Flows still good in Mid-September? I know we have a chance of cold weather, but probably very quiet on the river?
    It never gets too low, and in September they actually draw down Flathead Lake, so flows increase significantly. And you probably wouldn't see hardly anyone.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by CountryFunk View Post
    Google "wild and scenic missouri river"
    I dont know where this spot is in relation to good canoeing but I would find it mostly cuz I love this song. The song tells the story from the crew chiefs perspective of I believe the first deaths by forest firefighters. .

    Hello darkness my old friend

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