Pine River - Dobson Bridge to Low Bridge Sep 8, 2012

A trip was scheduled down the Pine River at the last minute. I decided to go along since it has been a while since I had been out on the river, and I had never done this section before. These last minute trips are nice because there are fewer paddlers. Only seven people were there, although there were plenty of others canoes and kayakers to share the river.
Temperatures were in the mid 50's. There were a lot wet roads on the way up, but no rain. That changed as we were shuttling cars.
We began the trip with a steady rain falling that lasted for about 1/2 hour. After they ended, it became a typical Michigan autumn day: brief showers giving way to clear skies. Then it would cloud over and rain briefly again. And then the sky would clear again.
 This section of the Pine is a lot like the upper section - narrow and very winding. I used the Old Town kayak again, although I could have easily used my 13' Perception.
 There are a lot of small class 1 to class 2 rapids to keep it interesting most of the way. In between are a lot of narrow, shallow stretches.

The sky finally cleared after lunch, with partly cloudy skies the rest of the way. The wind did pick up some, but not enough to cause any problems.
The bottom varies from sand to gravel, with a few sections of clay toward the end that form interesting ledges in the water.

There were no deadfalls to block the river, although there are a lot of logs in the water.. With the popularity of the river the liveries keep it pretty clear.

This large dune that is very poplar with kayakers. It is much steeper and taller than it appears. Many people like to climb it, some even dragging their kayaks to the top to ride them down. Unfortunately, one young man lost his life doing that this summer.
Toward the end the river flattens out as it nears the Tippy Dam Pond.
It ended up being a nice day, and a great group of paddlers to spend time with. The trip took just under 4 hours, including a 1/2 hour stop for lunch.

Total length today: 14.6 miles. Year to date:191.6 miles.
 There is another trip down this stretch in two weeks. I may just do it again then, although that will with be a much larger group.
In three weeks there is a trip scheduled down the middle stretch during the Michigan Paddlers Rendezvous, from Walker Bridge to Dobson Bridge. This is the only stretch I have not done yet. Looking forward to it.

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