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Paddle the Wisconsin River, (Part I), Sauk City to Arena, about 11 miles

This is Part I of a three part/two day trip down the Wisconsin River. You may choose to join us for Part I (Sauk City to Arena) or Part II (Camping the evening of 7/28/2012 on an Arena area Sandbar) or Part III (Arena to Shifflet Bar & outfitter and restaurant in Spring Green). Please sign up for each part individually.

We will be starting 2:00pm at the Sauk City Kayak Launch at the corner of Water Street and Carolina St. and paddle approximately 11 miles to Arena HWY 78 park/launch/exit. Expect to be on the water 3-4 hours or longer with sandbar breaks. And, Expect to share the river with other groups. There may be a few motor boats on the river but this is rare. expect to arrive at the Hwy 78 Launch/Exit/Sandbar at about 7:30pm.

After contacting outfitters in Sauk City and Spring Green I decided to establish our own shuttling service as one outfitter told me. "We are maxed out at this time of the year just taking care of our rentals. And our customers would have priority over your group".

The details: Please meet at the Sauk City Kayak Launch at 2:00pm to shuttle cars and unload kayaks/canoes. When you arrive drop your kayak on the sandbar say "Hi" to everyone and prepare to drive to Arena. We will drive a group of cars to Arena and park at the the Arena Hwy 78 Launch Area. I'll have a van waiting to shuttle you back to Sauk City. The cost of the van shuttle is $20.00 cash, (this may seem high but is substantially less than either of the outfitters shuttle services and they couldn't guarantee service to our group). Expect to get on the water at approximately 3:00pm. Late arrivals may have to catch up to the group. Late arrivals may also miss the shuttle van so please be on time. Our van only shuttles people not kayaks. You are not required to use the shuttle service I've arranged, you may always make your own arrangements.

If you are planning to camp Saturday night on the sand bar just leave your camping equipment in your car as the sand bar we are camping on is at the Arena Hwy 78 Launch area. You can walk on this sandbar from the parking lot. I'll be bringing a small charcoal grille. This launch site has been upgraded. It now has toilets. (did not locate any running water so bring a lot)

If you wish to contact Ron by phone the number is[masked]-0836. His phone is turned off while driving and kayaking. Also, kayaking locations along the Wisconsin River provide very poor service as they are remote. If you have questions, call early.

If bad weather threatens Ron will issue a cancellation notice at 11:00 am Saturday morning.

The map is accurate...yea!!!

The Madison Kayak Meetup Group is not an outfitter. We are not insured. We do not provide watercraft. We are a group of friends that get together and enjoy the outdoors. Therefore, when you travel with us you do so at your own risk. Your participation is your acceptance of this waiver.


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  • Ron I.

    Closer to 12 miles. We will do this trip again next year.

    July 29, 2012

  • Ron I.

    Water level was lowest in years and the weather very hot. Only 4 attended. Still we only got hung on a few sandbars and we moved briskly along. The four of us got along well and we had a very good paddle. Tim and I handled the shuttle communicating by phone to save some mileage. On the water at about 3:00 and out by 7:30pm.

    July 29, 2012

  • Tim S

    Great Trip

    July 29, 2012

  • Shannon F.

    River was beautiful and the co-paddlers were great. Saw some eagles on the way. We did share the river with lots of other paddlers and campers

    July 29, 2012

  • Tim S

    I will be camping at a campground near by.

    July 26, 2012

  • Ron I.

    Tim has offered to perform the shuttling in his SUV both Sat and Sun

    July 24, 2012

4 went

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