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New Meetup: Sugar River - County Road EE to Sweet Minnihaha Campground ( about 8 Miles)

From: Ron I.
Sent on: Sunday, July 25, 2010 10:22 AM
Announcing a new Meetup for Madison Kayaking Meetup Group!

What: Sugar River - County Road EE to Sweet Minnihaha Campground ( about 8 Miles)

When: Saturday, September 11,[masked]:30 AM

Where: Sugar River Cty Hwy EE
Cty Hwy EE Intersection of Cty Hwy EE and Sugar River
Albany, WI 53502

This event is back by popular demand!! smile We are launching at CTY HWY EE and the Sugar River. (Hard to miss this launch point as about 50 cars may park there. It is on the south side of HWY EE. It is a gravel parking lot. No waste bins or potty stations).

Paddling to Albany, WI is very scenic with lots of trees, curves, some low hanging branches, wildlife and serenity. When we get to the dam at Albany we will take a lunch break, and walk a quarter mile to the Edgewater Pub in bustling downtown Albany. (There is a bakery across the street and a few bars, food is great).

Portaging around the Albany dam at the city pier is easy and when we get there we are at the halfway point. The current above the dam is weak, so don't worry about going over the dam. The cement landing is carpeted with canvas to protect your water craft and dimpled so you don't slip, really well designed. The second half of the trip is from Albany to Sweet Minnihaha Campground N4697 County Road E Brodhead, WI[masked] - (608)[masked] where we exit the river. This is a private park and we should expect about a $2.00 parking fee per person.

Last time we meet at HWY EE at 8:30am, drove to the campground and asked to park. They asked how many were in our group and charged $2.00 per person for parking and river exit fees. They then gave us a sticker to hang from our mirror. We then returned to HWY EE and launched the kayaks at about 9:00am. When we arrived at the campground exit point (about 3:00m), we walked up the hill, got the cars and drove down to the river, packed up the watercraft and left...really easy.

The second half of the trip, below the dam, may be congested with innertubers. During the Memorial Day trip there were hundreds of people tubing down this stretch of the river and having a great time. Don't know what to expect this time. The behavior of the tubers was...interesting.

Now, if you are going to rent a watercraft from Sweet Minihaha, I'm sure they will be well organized as they rent hundreds of innertubes and canoes every weekend. They will also shuttle you for a fee. The launching site at Hwy EE is a regular drop off point for them. When you contact them about renting, let them know you want to launch from HWY EE at 9:00am. They will inform you when you have to arrive at the campground to meet the our launch schedule. Don't know their rental fees, you will need to call the campground (probably $25-35 for the day).

We should complete our trip by 2:00-3:00pm. The pace is leisurely, and except in a few areas the river is wide enough so you can match up and carry on a conversation. If you have rented, all you have to do is pull your watercraft on the bank...Minihaha does the rest.

Please remember to bring an extra set of clothes, gloves, hat, shoes, life vest, eye wear, flashlight, fluids, snacks, and any other safety equipment needed (kayaks and canoes do tip on occasion so having a dry set of clothes is nice). This area of the river is expected to be clear of obstructions. Put your phone and camera in a watertight bags as they don?t work well when wet. I?ll have a phone along for safety purposes. Please remember fluids and snacks. Please let me know if you cannot swim or are a poor swimmer or have any physical handicaps. Well-behaved children are welcome if they have previous kayaking experience. The landing does not have a bathroom. The campground facilities are good. The launching area is on the West side of the river. The campground is on the East. Getting back to your vehicle is not an issue.

If poor weather is forecasted, I?ll post a cancellation notice early by Saturday morning, no later than 6:00am. Excellent weather updates can be found here

The campground provides rentals and shuttling services. It's warming up, again, remember your fluids, hats, paddling gloves, etc. Normally there are not bugs over moving water, but you still may want to bring a bug spray.

It is possible to get a DUI in a canoe or kayak. It's an open bar for tubers.

Ron Inda...245-0836

The Madison Kayaking Meetup Group is not an outfitter. We are not insured. 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.

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