I've noticed that canoe tripping is really popular in the Northern US and Canada. I'm in the Southern part of the US, and I'm wondering how many here in the forums are from this part of the US and enjoy tripping?
Am blessed to have many spring runs, canoe able rivers near by and a few campsites for canoeist. But the large wilderness areas are further away than my wallet can by gas for. The Suwanee River trail and Everglades are too many gallons of gas away nowadays. So day trips in late fall through early spring. Other wise get up and on the river at dawn and off before the sun bakes me to a crisp. Not to mention those afternoon sea breeze winds/storms with a lot of lightning. So no canoe tripping. Maybe a overnight trip this fall.
I'm located in central Arkansas. We have a lot of float-able rivers such as the Buffalo National River, White River, Upper Ouachita River, Spring River, Cato River, and a lot of day tripping rivers. Some are good for several days of paddling. Some are only good for an couple of days on the river.
A lot of our rivers are limited to times of year that you can float also. We do have some spring fed rivers which remain float-able unless things get really dry and many rivers can be timed with the weather for an off season float.
We don't have any huge wilderness areas like up North, but most rivers lack cell phone service or at least consistent cell phone service. That's an indicator of wilderness area right?
I no longer live in the Southern US but I am in southwestern Indiana and go to the Missouri and Arkansas Ozarks when I can.
When there is sufficient water, the Buffalo National River is about as good as it gets in the lower 48 states. I have been on the White River and Spring River. Have not yet been on the Mulberry or Cossatot. If you are looking for people to trip with, the Arkansas Canoe Club is a sizable group and they have a yearly Rendezvous, I believe on the Mulberry. You might check out their facebook page.
There is a group that gets together twice a year to paddle in the Missouri Ozarks, generally on the Jacks Fork River, Current River, North Fork of the White River, and Bryant's Creek. They generally do day trips but overnight and multi-day trips have also been done.
The Current and Eleven Point Rivers in Missouri are not too far away, can be paddled year round, and are suitable for multi-day trips. It is a bit further, but the Big South Fork of the Cumberland River flowing out of north Tennessee into Kentucky is a wonderful river for overnight trips as well.
I currently live in Connecticut but have lived in Florida three times and have been paddling there, and all over the southeast, since the early 70's. I like all waters, but if I had to choose between northern paddling and AmSouth paddling . . . take me to Dixie, mamma!!!
I mentioned the Arkansas Canoe Club and its Rendezvous is indeed at Camp Couchdale. Yes, the Arkansas Canoe Club is large. I have not been a member but have paddled with a few. There are quite a few members from Texas and Oklahoma as well.
The Ozark Rendezvous has been going on for some 9 years or so now and is a more informal gathering of individuals, most of whom met via P net and is a group that meets twice a year somewhere in the Missouri Ozarks. For the last few years, the spring gathering has been on the North Fork of the White River upstream of Norfork Lake at a little place called Twin Bridges, MO and the fall gathering on the Current River at the National Park Service campground at Pulltite, but that is not set in stone. The next gathering will be the week of October 13-19 at Pulltite.
I'm over in west-central LA... I paddle mostly the Sabine/Toledo Bend, Oiska Chitto, and Neches, and a small local creek. Mostly day trips. My try to make an annual pilgrimage back home to NY, to get to the Adirondacks if i can. That's my favorite canoeing.
I live in Dallas and canoe trip quite often in OK and AR. Illinois, Kings, Buffalo, Kiamichi and Caddo Rivers are great for overnight travel. We just did a 3 day 2 night on the Sabine. They were generating out of Toledo Bend and had great water. In the winter we paddle around the Big Thicket in southeast TX. I hope to make a Rendesvous one of these days.
Soggy- We are going to be on the Lower Mountain Fork River July 18-20. Basecamping out of Beavers Bend if your interested. There is normally a decent release during this time of year. Cooler temperatures and rain in the forecast, what a relief.