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Things that interfere with or otherwise screw up canoe trips

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The weather can be a challenge, especially extreme desert heat, winds over 40 mph and serious precip that causes rivers to rise.
My biggest problems have been related to people. People that don't get along very well, people that want to get loaded, people that don't pitch in much and help. My Maximum party size is now 4 carefully selected long term friends and my brother. That's it.
 
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Just experienced a trip from hell.

Got a childhood friend that I now only see once ever few years. We went camping and it turned out he’s a raging alcoholic. First day we were fishing and I realized he was getting way too tipsy for the canoe. I struggled to get us back to camp without flipping over. Mentioned maybe he should slow down on the drinks and he really didn’t seem to appreciate the suggestion. I cut the trip short and the day to pack up and leave he was passed out drunk in the campsite by 10am. Managed to get him and the gear in the canoe. I then begged him to not attempt to paddle, just sit there still. I hugged the shoreline in shallow water back to our portage site. I had to make multiple trips while he staggered down the trail leaving gear littered everywhere. He passed out in the car again while I packed the car and tied up the canoe.
 
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Just experienced a trip from hell.

Got a childhood friend that I now only see once ever few years. We went camping and it turned out he’s a raging alcoholic. First day we were fishing and I realized he was getting way too tipsy for the canoe. I struggled to get us back to camp without flipping over. Mentioned maybe he should slow down on the drinks and he really didn’t seem to appreciate the suggestion. I cut the trip short and the day to pack up and leave he was passed out drunk in the campsite by 10am. Managed to get him and the gear in the canoe. I then begged him to not attempt to paddle, just sit there still. I hugged the shoreline in shallow water back to our portage site. I had to make multiple trips while he staggered down the trail leaving gear littered everywhere. He passed out in the car again while I packed the car and tied up the canoe.
That's one that most of us wouldn't think of, but it can sure ruin a trip. I had a good friend that recently passed at 63 that I would never consider tripping with even though he was a competent outdoorsman. He stayed at my house one time and I almost ended up sleeping in the yard to get away from him.
 
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Some people use time in the outdoors to get loaded. They are away from home, away from spouses, etc.
I was hunting deer with a pretty good friend in very remote Nevada. The guy is a geologist and very skilled in the outdoors, but he got so drunk he fell in the campfire and I had to drag him out. I helped him to the tent and he passed out on the floor never making his sleeping bag.
I did a week long canoe trip with a friend of 35 years. He smoked weed all day every day. He had a couple of near misses because he was smoking and not paddling. Later he capsized in the one dangerous spot on the trip. I was not happy and have given up on him since.
 
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This past Thursday, 10/20/22 I got an early start and headed up to the North Maine Woods for what I hoped would be 4 nights camping out of my wall tent at Poland Pond. I’ve been there before, it’s an easy 3 mile paddle upstream to a quiet pond (lake) with a primitive island campsite.
Last years camp,
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We have had some heavy rain events here in Maine recently and I was concerned about water levels. To get to up into thee pond requires paddling up a narrow section of the stream where there used to be a dam. Last year I managed to get up thru there without much difficulty.
Paddling up thru the narrows last year,
A5EDFB59-457F-4352-8F84-A92AA8E7C618.png
When I arrived at the put in this year the water level was much higher than last year. Even the area above the water level was soaking wet. As I began to off load, I kept thinking of the narrows and how much water was going thru there now. The temps where in the high 40’s, clouds replaced what was supposed to be sunny skies and there was a small headwind building. For the first time I can remember I said to my self the hell with this. I jumped back into the warm truck, proceeded to look for an alternative site which never developed and I was home by midnight.
The put in where I turned around,
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Some reasons why I bailed…
Water levels.
Weather.
Age and physical limits.
Common sense that comes with age.
 
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Common sense that comes with age.
That's probably the most important one to pay attention to! I have been for most of my life, a dedicated ice climber & mountaineer. Modern ice climbing involves the use of pretty specific styled ice axes. When I have bailed from a day of climbing, from poor conditions, cold- or lack thereof which makes the ice unsuitable-, or fear!!, we just refer to it as "taking the tools for a walk". It's still a good day out in the mountains, but sometimes common sense must prevail.

By the way Robin, that's a great looking truck/canoe rig! You took your canoe out for a ride and got outdoors. That's all that counts.
 

Glenn MacGrady

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It was a nice ride and scouting trip. Wet ground, hard upstream paddling, and cold weather would turn me off, too. As I've aged into ancientness, I can't tolerate hot or cold weather anymore.

What canoe were you paddling there last year? It looks as if you are in a centralized seat.
 
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What canoe were you paddling there last year? It looks as if you are in a centralized seat.
It was my 16’ tandem Chestnut Cruiser, I agree, it does look like I’m in the center of the canoe, must be the Go Pro, I was in the bow seat, canoe reversed.
 
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