We’ll survive the weekend! All trips are going out.

Lots of rain again locally and to the south of our watershed. I don't envy some of you guys down south, especially with more coming. For us, while we did see an immediate rise in local water levels, it's an overall small impact on our trips compared to the middle third of the river valley. We're still above a fair amount of the local rainfall by the time it gets into the Wisconsin River after it makes its way through all of the tributaries. Massive rainfall in the central part of the state is what really makes an impact because by the time all of that rain has filtered downstream into the Wisconsin River, it gets to us as one big wall of water. I'm always happy to avoid the wall. All of this is to say that while yes, it's wet, and yes, we're higher than usual, and yes, it's gonna rain again Friday night, we're still looking good with both weather and sandbar availability for Saturday and Sunday. Friday during the day also seems to be clearing up though rain/storms look unavoidable overnight. On the brightside, even if we get a ton of rain Friday, it won't have time to really get into the system and wash us out until later in the week (but we'll cross that bridge if we come to it). On the picture below, we're at the tip of the white arrow. The faded white areas are all part of the watershed for the Wisconsin River. Draw a horizontal line across La Crosse and anything above there is what I usually worry about. -Ryan

Weather roulette

Quick update - water levels will drop substantially in 2 days leaving us tons of sandbars. Hopefully they'll stay like that but we've got 50/50 chances of storms Tuesday through Friday so if most of those days get significant rain we could have some issues. I don't think it's likely, but certainly possible. Updates will come as the rain starts to fall - no news is good news.

I’ve been damboozled!

The dam two days upstream at Castle Rock doubled their output a few hours ago.  Trips are still fine, it just means we'll see waters rise a bit on Saturday so fewer sandbars than I initially anticipated.  This mostly means you can expect to share the bigger ones as this is also one of (if not the) busiest weekends of the year. Definitely one of those times where grabbing a nice sandbar earlier rather than later is the best course of action.

You’re probably wondering about all this rain…

If you've got a trip this weekend and you're one of the 95% of our customers that live in Madison, Milwaukee, or Chicago - you're probably swimming through puddles at the moment thinking there's no way canoe trips can go out with this much water. Good news (up here at least), the vast majority of the rainfall has hit locally or just south of the watershed which means it's going to have a minimal effect on river levels in our stretch. We are still fully expecting to put trips out on the substantial number of sandbars popping out of the river. -Ryan [caption id="attachment_1311" align="aligncenter" width="640"] The last 24 hours of rainfall[/caption]

Lots of rain locally but dry upstream means smooth sailing

This weekend is looking great! Sunny and dry with highs in the upper 80s! We've been sold out for weeks and I imagine it's gonna stay that way. Water levels are still high for this time of year but plenty of sandbars out right now and even though we've had a lot of rain locally, the bigger impact is upstream of us and it's been pretty dry there. All of that is to say the number of available sandbars has been stable and should remain so. Should be a great week! -Ryan

Water still higher than normal but we’ve got sandbars

The weather forecast looks great through middle/end of Sunday! Central Wisconsin saw some rain the past couple days so we're about due for a small rise in water levels in the middle of the weekend so you'll want to keep an eye on the edge of your sandbar to make sure it's not getting covered overnight (stick a paddle in the sand at the water line). Although water levels are still higher than normal, even with this rise we'll still be under our threshold to cancel trips. The sandbars will be fewer and smaller but they're there. This is one of the busier weekends of the year so expect to share the larger ones. -Ryan

Bookended by Storms

Looks like we've got a likely chance of storms Thursday night and Sunday night but for most of you, Friday to Sunday currently looks good! Saturday in particular looks just about perfect with highs in the 80s and lows in the high 50s.  Should be reasonable July camping weather! Water levels have held steady all this week and look to remain so at least through the weekend.  Even if the storms this weekend were substantial (they don't appear to be) it would take at least a few days for it to have any effect on us locally so at this point, I'm feeling good about this weekend.

-Ryan

Smooth sailing ahead

Aside from a few pop-up storms this evening things are looking pretty good. We were able to salvage a lot of this weekend (including 50-60 people out overnight tonight). Weather has been great and forecast says it should stay that way. Long term is also looking dry so our newly acquired reasonable water levels should continue or get even better. Either way, it's nice to see so many sandbars out again!

Things are looking up (or rather down)!

That big drop happened! Sometime Saturday night we'll see water levels begin to drop 6" or more. Doesn't sound like much but it's more than enough to get significantly more sandbars above water. At this point, trips beginning Sunday and beyond are good to go! If you've already got a reservation with us, you'll see your trip status reconfirmed. As a bonus, all hints of storms and rain have moved out of the 3 day forecast! Weather is looking ideal! I've rarely been so excited to see a lot of yellow on this chart! WI River water levels

Choose your own adventure

New updates are out and they look good. Kind of. In a very relative way. The weather forecast also looks to be pretty stable with small passing rain showers totaling less than a 1/4". We're just so close to that sandbar availability line that it hurts. So here's what we're gonna do: in the interest of safety first we're canceling Saturday overnight trips by default - BUT - if you've done this trip before and know what you're in for, willing to settle for what qualifies as a sandbar in the loosest sense of the word, likely share that sandbar with new river friends, and generally accept that this will be something of an adventure, we'll send you out. More details in your email. Starting Sunday morning and beyond, things are looking much better and I expect we'll be sending out overnight trips. -Ryan Quick update at 1:30pm - we're looking at another 1.5-2kcfs drop upstream tomorrow morning which would get to us in time for Sunday night trips. We're currently at 16.5kcfs (down from 17kcfs this morning/last night) in our area. Assuming this goes to plan, it would mean we're in the clear for Sunday and beyond as levels should settle at or below 15kcfs (our overnight cancellation threshold). Confirmation sometime tomorrow if/when that drop happens.

Behind the Boats

Ever wonder what life is like running a canoe company? Some people do. I've gotten questions ranging from "How many times have you been to the Boundary Waters?" (one) to "What do you do in the Winter?" (it depends) and my personal favorite "You must love paddling" (paddling is #4 on the list).