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The Longest Canoe Trip in Indiana: 9 Miles?

This sounds like a good question for my new friend:

Indiana offers several river systems that are ideal for canoe trips, providing opportunities for multi-day adventures. The Wabash River is the longest river in Indiana, running for approximately 475 miles. While it would be technically possible to embark on a multi-day canoe trip along the Wabash River, there are some factors to consider.

The Wabash River, like many rivers, can vary in terms of water levels, flow rate, and accessibility along its course. These factors can impact the feasibility and duration of a canoe trip. Additionally, the Wabash River is subject to dams, locks, and other man-made obstructions, which may require portaging. Portaging can be time-consuming and physically demanding, so minimizing the need for portages would be ideal for an extended trip.

To plan a multi-day canoe trip with minimal portaging, you can focus on the lower stretch of the Wabash River, starting from the confluence with the Ohio River near Mount Carmel, Illinois. From this point, you can paddle upstream into Indiana and continue along the Wabash River.

One possible itinerary could be to paddle from Mount Carmel to Lafayette, a distance of approximately 270 miles. This stretch would provide a diverse range of landscapes, including rural areas, small towns, and natural surroundings. However, please note that this estimate may vary depending on factors such as water levels and flow rate.

Before embarking on any canoe trip, it is essential to conduct thorough research and plan accordingly. Check local regulations, obtain necessary permits, and ensure you have appropriate equipment and provisions for an extended journey. Additionally, stay updated on weather conditions and river levels to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.
Great photos. How did he get pictures of each step of his capsize?
That is a baffling statement.
The Ohio River, now tamed by locks and dams and dredging, isn't the kind of river you normally see trip reports for here. However, it has served as a canoe route for thousands of years.

We should know from states and capitals lessons that the Ohio River forms the southern border between Kentucky and Indiana. Perhaps there are pedantic arguments about how much of a trip down the Ohio River would technically be in Kentucky. Regardless, you could float the Ohio and stay in Indiana every night for several days. It also appears an Indiana fishing license would allow you to fish during your trip.
How did he get pictures of each step of his capsize?

He had a camera mounted on a monopod on the front of his cockpit, probably a GoPro type, which you can see in other pictures. I assume you extract still photos from it and edit them.
Hoosier here. The author is poorly informed. Even if the claim is for outfitter trips, she is woefully mistaken. Heck, my local livery does 28 mile trips every day during the season. For a little side cash and a respectful tone, they will even let you keep the canoe out overnight so you can camp.


The White River is probably the most common "long" canoe trip in the state. It is really two rivers, the West Fork and the East Fork.

The West Fork is 321 miles from headwaters to its confluence with the Wabash. This river runs through several good size cities, including Indianapolis.

The East Fork begins as the confluence of the Driftwood and Flatwood rivers in Columbus, IN. It is a much more rural river, with few towns along its 161 mile trek to meet up with the West Fork. My son and I plan to do this trip spring 2024.

The Wabash is over 400 miles, but is only commonly paddled in a few areas.

Public camping in Indiana is limited to designated wilderness (yes, we have such, the Hoosier National Forest is over 200,000 acres alone), designated campgrounds, and ground below the high water mark of navigable waterways (sandbar camping). This limits river camping to specific streamside campgrounds or acceptable water levels.

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Any time I see (or suspect) that a web page is really more of an advertisement than a true article of interest I either stop reading or put any information provided in perspective. Infomercials on the web seem to be getting more common these days.
Canoeing on the Ohio River is not all that appealing due to the locks and barge traffic.

The White and the Wabash offer potentials for the longest paddling ventures. Unfortunately, the canoeing experience on both has been degraded by the infestation of the invasive Silver Carp variant of the Asian Carp.

One of the better rivers for canoeing in Indiana is the Blue River in southeastern Indiana which flows south into the Ohio. When there is sufficient water it is possible to paddle about 57 miles of the Blue with one mandatory portage around the dam at Miltown.
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Canoeing on the Ohio River is not all that appealing due to the locks and barge traffic
Yeah, I can't see making a trip on the Ohio in the touring canoe. Maybe in a raft, while wearing a straw hat. It would be fun stopping at rivertowns along the way, eating good food and staying in bed and breakfasts.

I think I'd want a motor to ensure I could stay out of the barge's way.