Thursday, December 27, 2007

Santa float makes it 25 consecutive months

Saturday 12-22-07, Pat (elf boy) and Dan (Santa) made the 2nd annual Santa float through down town Naperville. The festive garb and the timing the weekend before Christmas had people in a holiday mood. Many people enthusiastically acknowledged the blue kayak with 2 bearded men braving the elements (it really was not bad, about 50, but overcast). Although the downtown acknowledgment of the people was to be expected, it was towards the end of the float that gave us the most pleasure. As we were finishing up the last mile or so, passing by the million dollar+ luxury homes, 2 people came running out of their house yelling for Santa as if they were 2 little kids seeing Santa fly by on his sleigh. I can only imagine they were laying on their couch watching TV when in the corner of their eye they saw some nuts floating down the river.....then it occurred to them that those nuts were Santa and one of his elves! The fun we have on the river just never ends.

Wednesday 12-26-07, Kent and I did the same trip done by Santa and his helper a few days before (Pat could not make it due to "jammie day"). There were no special outfits this day but we did test drive some recently received kayaking accessories. Dan's new kayaking boots proved to be quite adequate (they truly were not tested since we did not hve to step into the 34 degree water!). The best part was the dual testing of the 2 pairs of gloves Dan received. One was a pair of Reactor kayaking gloves and the other a scuba diving glove. Dan had recently came up with brilliant idea that scuba gloves may be the perfect answer for winter kayaking and the only drawback associated with it.....frigid digits!! Dan's plan was to wear one of each (suggested by Pat, the giver of the scuba gloves) and do a side by side test. When informed of this plan, Kent was quick to suggest that he too could participate in the test with the other two unused gloves. I am glad to report,we gave both gloves a thumbs up (conditions were sunny and 40'ish). Nothing of significance on this trip although we once again talked of some overnight kayaking / camping trips that never seem to materialize. Let's "just do it."

Friday, November 30, 2007

Consecutive Month 23 and 24

Mid October was our 23rd consecutive month as we de-flowered another Duper virgin. Perry had the iniation rites performed in the normal way...right in the middle of the woods with the great horned owl looking down upon us. Perry will deny all accounts of this trip as he refuses to acknowledge the existence of an owl on the Duper or any initiation rites of passage that were performed on him. Dan, Kent and Pat, the original Duper boys, all just smiled amongst themselves in a way that only they could understand and appreciate. It is not our place to question the existence of the almighty owl or why he is present during the daylight hours, we just know what happens on the river stays on the river (other than the nonsense I write on this blog!!).

The lack of rain seriously threatened our streak on the river (easy readers, we do not STREAK on the river). Alternate plans were being made by Dan and Pat to go visit a lake to keep the streak alive......why you ask? If you have to ask I do not expect you to understand. We got our 1st significant rain in a couple of months and the 24th month was no longer in doubt. Dan and Pat hit the Hidden Lake to Community park run on Wednesday before Thanksgiving. Two interesting nature sitings, a 6 point buck and a squirrel swimming. I am not sure if that is normal but it is something neither one of us had ever seen.
Friday after T-day Kent and Dan hit another tried and true route: Community park to Royce road. We had a serious tree blockage which resulted in Kent staying in the kayak and getting soaked and Dan portaging and staying dry. We saw our wounded heron buddy as well as 4 deer crossing the river. Does anyone else realize what they are missing out on by not using the Duper? There was at least one other nut enjoying the river this you can see in the 1st photo a fisherman was out wading. The middle picture is Kent and Perry approaching the 7 bridges rapids and the 3rd one is Kent on the November trip. Sorry for the out of order pictures. Double click on the photos for a larger view.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Larry does the Limbo!!

Larry and James visited from Kansas and brought along their two kayaks hoping to find some quality river time. Unfortunately, the lack of rain left the Duper in a sad state of water deficiency. We did however, make our way to Churchill Woods forest preserve to give the East branch of the DuPage river a try. Before we headed up stream, we explored the islands near the put in sight. As you can see from the 1st picture (click on it for a larger view), Larry became one with his kayak and was somehow able to get under the bridge. James and Dan did not feel it was in their best interest to attempt a similar feat.

Although we had no significant wildlife sightings (outside the usual herons, ducks, carp etc.) or any fantastic tale to tell, it was the 1st trip involving 3 solo 'yaks and it involved a couple new paddlers. We are still a week or two away from some quality tree color but as I have said many times before......time spent on the river with good friends and family is a pretty good way to kill a few hours. October is here and I will surely be out again soon to extend my streak to 23 consecutive kayaking months. LET THERE BE RAIN!!!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

2 river trips, one entry

Kent and I put in at Hidden Lake on 9/15/07 and had a world's record slow pace down to Community park. The float through the Arboretum was enjoyable but the river was about as low as we have experienced. We did very little paddling and let the slow pace of the river take us peacefully to our destination.
A very uneventful float but enjoyable nonetheless.

On 9/22/07, the Duper boys ventured down to Shorewood to recreate our excellent adventure from 9/1/07 when the rapids were raging. A funny thing about rivers, they prefer to have water in them. Although we did not get stuck very often, the payoff at the end of this route is supposed to be the class 2 rapids that we experienced 2 weeks ago. No water = no rapids. This is a nice stretch with or without rapids and we did start to see some color on the trees. We need some rain!!!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Streak = 22 mths. Rapids at Shepley!!!

Kent and Dan took the 2 solo 'yaks down to Hammel woods to give Dan a taste of the Illinois' rapids. The Watertrails map (see link to the right) says in times of high water this section provides nice rapid action. Although the river was clearly about 4 ft lower than last week this was the best action Dan has experienced in the Pungo classic. Definitely worth the 45 minute drive. The 5.44 mile river trip took a little over 1 hour and 15 minutes to complete. We saw 2 deer on the bank, a hawk and some blue heron. Even with breakfast, the total time of this little adventure was about 4 hours. Not bad considering even our smallest trips seem to take 3 hours once you do the car drop off, etc.

This September 1 trip brought the consecutive month streak to 22.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Raging this the Colorado?

The recent rain engorged the river to an all time high of 9.05 on the Naperville guage. Pat and Dan were in the tandem and Kent did the solo thing. We put in at Centennial beach with a takeout of Knoch Knolls. The GPS indicated our high speed was 9.1 mph with an average speed of about 6 miles an hour. We finished the 5.73 mile trek in 56 minutes. This trip normally takes about 1.5 hours.

With the river so high and fast the ability to take quality rivers shots was diminished. As you can see from the pictures, the river was over much of the walking path downtown and flooding the parking lot at Knoch Knolls. At this depth (and this fast) there was one bridge in Naperville that we had a precarious moment passing under. We managed to get through without impaling our heads on the low hanging metal brackets hanging under the bridge.

Sunday 8/27/07 - Saturday was so good I decided to take out Duper virgin Andy on the same route. Just one day later the river was noticeably lower (8.2) and passing under the bridge mentioned above was a non-issue. The speed of the river seemed about the same but Andy's desire to show off his manly paddling prowess propelled us to an even quicker time than the day before. I tried to explain that the appeal of the Duper is the float not the paddle!!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

1st ever Night float - or- "Float of the bugs"

Another first for the Duper boys as we took ourselves up on our long time threat to tame the beast at night. Ideally this should be done with a full moon (keep you pants up, we are talking lunar not gluteal), but a call from Kent, a spur of the moment decision and we were off.

We put in at Hidden Lake with the destination of Community Park. We figured a well known route was our best option with the limited visibility. As you can see in the picture, we had our headlamps on and were ready to start another chapter of life on the Duper. When there was no tree cover the lights were not all that necessary even though we had no moon light. However, when we were in the Arboretum, the light was necessary. Remember how moths and bugs congregate around porch lights at home and around lanterns while camping? Guess what? They like headlamps on the river also!!!

A few swallowed bugs were washed down with a couple Fat Tire brews while we held each other and watched the fireworks being ignited at the Bandit game. All in all, not a bad way to spend a Friday evening.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Mad River Canoe trip extends streak to 21

The recent rain on Saturday night boosted the river to a canoe-able 5.3 so Pat and Dan took out the Mad River Canoe for the obligatory August float. With the streak extended to 21 months our next mission was to make sure we did not get stuck in downtown Naperville. The feel and float is definatley different from the kayak to the canoe and there was a time or two that we felt as if we might get swamped (stuck on a rock perpendicluar to the water flow for instance). Despite the oppressive heat and the near mishap, the crowd in Naperville got to its feet to observe the skilled oarsmen manuever through the obstacles as if their boat was a hot knife cutting through butter. Thanks for the encouragement, girls!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Kayaks battle the wind & waves

July 14th, 2007 we had our biggest single day group with 6 kayakers using 2 tandems and 2 singles. The day had an ominous feel to it with what appeared to be some threatening clouds and there was talk of shortening our planned trip. Kent and Dan declared we would stay the course and down to Silver Springs State park we headed. As we unloaded our gear a family group was taking off in 20 canoes loaded with plenty of beer. I was sure we would see more of them during the day! After our designated drivers returned from our takeout point we headed out onto the Fox. Chuck and Brandon took the two singles, Dan and Kent hopped in Dan's tandem and Adam and Kevin navigated Kent's tandem.

The day was beautiful with bright sun and a flowing river (unlike's last week's drag fest on the Duper). With an expected journey of approximately 11 miles and an estimated time of 3 or more hours we set off. This stretch of the Fox is very wide, has numerous islands and has very little man-made interference to disturb the shoreline. We did only see one blue heron which surprised me some. Just short of the 5 mile point we stopped on a little island for some sandwhiches and some beer (thanks Chuck). Kent and Dan switched boats with Chuck and Brandon for the 2nd half of the trip.

Altough we had commented throughout the day how windy it was and we were constantly looking for the ideal position in the river to avoid the wind, none of us was prepared for the hurricane-like winds that would smack us upside the head at about mile 9. The river was straight and the wind perfectly postioned right in our faces, creating whitecaps and difficult paddling conditions. It felt like we were paddling up Lake Michigan in the annual Macinac Island race. We all remained in good spirits despite the pulsating pain in the shoulders and lived to finish the 11.8 mile stretch in 3 hours and 55 minutes. It was nice to get on another river and enjoy the company of some new paddlers. I wonder how this trip would be with little or no wind.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

July 8, 2007 - Hot, sunny and nonexistent?

The temperature was in the 90's and the gauge was low but what the heck? Off we were to the put in north of North avenue with the destination of Mack Road. One problem, though. As you can see from the 1st picture there was no river at Mack Rd. This brought back some bad memories (can you really have BAD memories when kayaking?) of Kent and my trip last year when we unexpectedly ran out of river at Gary Mills road. Since the river did not exist at Mack Rd we went north to Gary Mills road. The river was back from last year's absence and it looks like they made some nice improvements. Since this was our revised takeout spot we did not experience it first hand.

The beginning of this stretch and the end were very nice, river levels were ok and the scenery was great. This is one of the most secluded parts of the river and at times it feels as if you were in the deepest parts of a national forest....or one of the last trips down a river that was due to be flooded and made into a lake (did I hear Kent squeal like a pig?). The middle section was low and we had to drag the boats on occasion. We saw 4 blue heron in flight all at once and a fifth flew by shortly after. A father and 2 boys were walking the river and one of the kids caught a decent size carp with his hands!!!

Again, I plea for rain!!!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Streak = 20. New territory explored!!

The streak hit 20 consecutive months as we hit the river on July 1st despite the record low reading of 4.82 on the Naperville gauge. Although Pat's leg needed a little pulling (he thought with the river depth that we would be dragging the kayaks down the river, not paddling), Dan has been thinking of this "new" trip for many months and was going to do it with someone or not. What is this new trip you ask?

We put in at DuPage River Parkway (East branch) with a takeout at Knoch Knolls (West branch). We had previously (about month 5 of the streak) floated down the WBDR and passed by the convergence of the EBDR so we knew it was not too far south of Knoch Knolls. With the low water level we anticipated more dragging than floating but that was not the case. The 2.66 miles of the east branch were a non issue and we did not get stuck once. We did see a beaver, a deer (in the water), a meercat (maybe), a jumping carp and multiple herons. Both Pat and Dan thought this was one of the best stretches of either river.

The first picture is Pat indicating that we had come to the place where the two rivers met. You can also see in the pictures that there was a noticeable difference in color between the two branches: murky light green east branch verse, dark clear west branch. Once we headed up stream on the West branch the low water level was a factor and we did need to walk a couple time during a 100 yard stretch. Overall this was a keeper trip that will be repeated.

Door County, Wisconsin 6/20/07

Pat and I put in by Weborg point in Green Bay in the Peninsula State park. We first paddled to the harbor to look at the yachts and sailboats that were docked. This area was quite sheltered and allowed us a leisurely float gazing at the obviously expensive boats. I suppose I would take one if I was given one but I prefer the man powered 'yaks (I would take a few more of those...see previous entry!).

Once we left the harbor we set out to reach the next point on the horizon. Being in such a big body of water with a recreational kayak we kept close to shore, knowing if we ventured too far out a sea kayak would be the preferred vessel. Battling the winds and the rough water, it did not take long to validate that we were not on the Duper and we would actually have to paddle instead of float. On the trip back we were going with the wind and the waves so it made for a much easier paddle.

June ended as our 19th consecutive kayak month yet we did not get on the river at all. We need some RAIN!!!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

June 9, 2007 - REI paddle demo days

Fairly lame way to extend the consecutive month kayak streak but kayaking is kayaking and this counts as a float (I will kayak again in June at Door County so the streak would continue regardless).

Lisa and I headed to Lake Arlington to "test drive" a kayak or two. Lisa initially wanted to go in a tandem but I convinced her to try a solo. We both took out a 'yak and took a leisurely paddle around the lake. There was quite a few people taking advantage of the beautiful weather and access to free boat usage. When we returned the boats (recreational, been there done that) I got back in line to try a sea kayak. This was noticeably quicker and less stable but I really enjoyed it. A sea kayak and a whitewater kayak would complete the fleet quite nicely.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial Day float

No pictures today to commemorate our tributary float to all the men and women who have served over the years. The rain on Saturday revived the river from its death march and the gauge hit a whopping 5.30. This was enough to allow us to float leisurely (i.e. very slow) from Community Park to Royce road. A distance traveled many times but different each trip.

As Kent and I traveled in our singles we enjoyed a few Red Stripes and some homemade, fresh- off-the-smoker beef jerky. A fairly uneventful trip but any trip on the river is better than no trip on the river.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

May 12, 2007 - Lonely trip, but streak hits 18

The recent Yakima rack sale at REI has allowed me to have rack possibilities on both vehicles. Loading kayaks on their side on the SUV is very challenging and this will allow a much easier double kayak transport situation.

This trip really accomplished two things: trying out the new rack and extending the consecutive month kayaking streak to 18 months. I loaded my solo and my bike and headed down to Warrenville road (a first ever put-in spot). I locked my kayak there, drove to Community Park, left my car and rode my bike back to Warrenville road. With all the solo logistics accomplished, I became one with the Duper. The gauge was at 5.24 and I did get stuck in one area due to low water level. As I passed by a group of "breaking" I-88 construction workers one yelled out: "Do you need a job?" I am not sure if they were that desperate for a warm body or that a lonely kayaker radiates the "I need a job and think I may find it out on the river" vibe or what.

I declined the offer (I wonder what the reference to the wind was with that job offer?) and took out at Community Park. After loading the kayak, it was back to get my bike and end the excursion.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

April 29, 2007 - a "maiden" voyage

As mentioned in a previous entry, Kent seems to be living a charmed life. There was no news of any more new toys, yet today's float gave him the first ever kayaking trifecta......yes, 3 days in a row on the river. When this fact was pointed out Kent couldn't remember how long ago he had done anything fun 3 days in a row (your honeymoon was how long ago?).

As the title of this entry states, this was a maiden voyage. We all took our lovely brides for a float on this perfect day with the temperatures in the upper 70's and the river over 6 ft. Pat and Mary rode in "Big red" the Mad River canoe, Dan and Lisa took the blue bomber kayak and Kent and Tracy were in the orange peel kayak. We put in at Pioneer Park with the destination of Knoch Knolls. Although this section does not give you the "thousand miles from nowhere" feeling that some sections do, it does provide quite a scenic view of some million dollar plus homes. The "ladies" all drooled over which was their favorite and secretly wondered why they hadn't met the guy that could afford a house like these. Just kidding girls, we all did a little drooling.
This was a day we saw numerous other kayaks and canoes, either in transport to the river or just finishing or beginning. We did not actually pass or get passed while we were on the river (maybe due to the fact we were 3 abreast...easy boys!). It may be the "magic" of the Duper that takes a hold of people and allows the mindless chatter to spill out since the fairer sex had no problem easing into participating. This was a fun day that we will need to repeat in the near future.

April 27, 2007 - a quickee

The recent rains had the river flowing with the gauge at 7.5. With Pat and Dan in the tandem and Kent in his solo we put in at Hidden Lake with the destination of Community park. The river starts out fast here and we knew this trip would be quick. The blooming plants (not onions) made the trip through the Arboretum a visual and aromatic adventure. The weather was 50'ish and cloudy but we had to get Pat his April float.

You may wonder why I have a picture of Kent from January with his wool hat and helmet but this is what he actually was wearing at the end of April (double quick on the picture for better detail). He may have misunderstood the weatherman and heard "it is 15 degrees" instead of "it is 50 degrees". All in all, a short trip with fast moving water and the usual mindless chatter.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

April 22, 2007

Kent's new toys just keep flowing in like the Duper after a 2" rainfall...this time a new car with a 2 kayak, car-top carrier. A nice upgrade from the "cram one kayak in the back of the car" technique we have used many times before.

Kent and Dan put the 2 solo kayaks in at Royce Road with the destination of the DuPage River park way. The Naperville gauge was at 5.5 feet and we had no issues with low spots. The weather was in the 60's with a strong south wind, although it did not affect us much at all. The major blockage a short distance past the trout farm still exists and is bigger than ever. Our exit from the river was a little interesting and difficult as we had to climb a tree out of the river. The portage was not that far and we were back on the river in no time.

With the warm spring weather it was obvious love was in the air as we saw 2 large turtles (shells like dinner plates) mating or playing piggy back (turtle back?), we are not sure. From Kent's description, I believe he thought it was the former, not the latter. I never would have thought that turtles that large would be in the Duper, but I am always being pleasantly surprised at the wild life we get to witness. It is shame more people to do not realize what a little gem we have in our own DuPage county backyard.

Monday, April 2, 2007

April 1, 2007 - the streak hits 17, no foolin'

The recent rain increased the river to just under 6.0 feet on the Naperville gauge and although it was windy and rainy the river conditions were right to stretch the consecutive kayak-month streak to 17. Oh, yeah, it was also ideal for Kent to try out his new kayak on the river after only using it in the pool practicing Eskimo rolls. I do believe Kent realizes the Duper is only about 1.5 ft deep in most areas and I am pretty sure he will get a face full of river bottom if he attempts this new skill around here!

Inspired by the Saturday night showing of "Deliverance", we put in at Community Park in hopes of finding some adventure. As we ventured through the golf course we observed some crazy golfers out in the wind and the rain. They probably thought the same about us but we were already surrounded by water, what did we care if it was raining? Our first golf ball of the year splashed 40 yards in front of us and Kent experienced his first true riffles in his new kayak. We took out at Hidden Lake Trout farm without being blocked by the downed trees that had impaired our last trip down this stretch.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

March 11, 2007 - Spring is coming!

Beautiful weather with temperatures in the 50's and blue sky gave hint of the coming spring. The recent snow melt engorged the river to a gauge height of 6.86, which meant only 1 thing......where was I going to go kayaking and with who(m?). Both Kent and I spent Saturday occupied in our respective houses tied to the dreaded "honey-do's" list. Sunday was the day for the float.

We put in at Hidden Lake with a takeout of Royce road. Kent did not disappoint as before we even started to float he had declared (as he always does) that he was too hot and he had to shed a layer. I am not sure if he does this for my entertainment or not but it cracks me up every time. Right away we knew that with these conditions a float down the Dupe was far superior to painting the walls (even white!). Our next pleasant surprise was the total elimination of the major river blockage right before the Arboretum that had always required a portage.

We had multiple sections of nice water action and the wildlife highlight was a huge beaver (Kent estimated 40 pounds), a large owl and our first heron sighting of the year. A couple of beverages, some chips and salsa at riverside capped off a delightful Sunday afternoon.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

March 4, 2007...2 boats, 4 men and the streak hits 16

Taking advantage of the high water (over 6.0 ft on the Naperville gauge) and the bright sun, Pat, Dan, Kent and Mike (a Duper virgin) launched at Centennial Beach and took out at Knoch Knolls park. The temperature was in the 30's and the significant ice that choked the west branch a couple of weeks ago was not an issue. We did have to break through some recently formed ice get the trip started, though.

It was not long before talk of rubbing, looking for the "V" and the topic of how good a kisser Kent was indicated that Mike fit right in. The normal Einstein-type conversation that we so enjoy was not going to be scarified today! Hey, Mike, why is one side of the geese formation longer than the other? The mom can tell what by tasting what?

We had many enthusiastic fans along the river walk and the river had some nice action in a few spots, although we could see that it had been 2 feet higher just a few days ago (gauge was over 8 ft on Friday). Wildlife sightings were limited to ducks and geese but we did see some nice ice formations from branches down to the river.

As always boys, the time spent on the river with you guys is always enjoyable and entertaining.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Feb, 24th 2007 - the streak hits 15!

The temperature was about 28 degrees with a south wind in our face. The river gauge has been frozen on 6.3 feet the last few weeks but we figured with the recent snow melt there should be no issue and we should not get stuck . It is bad enough when you need to step into the river when it is warm. Dressed appropriately, Pat and I put in at Community park with a takeout destination of Royce Rd.
The air temperature was not a factor but we quickly discovered the river appeared to be very low and the prospect of getting stuck was a distinct possibility. Shortly after we passed Kent's work (and called him to let him know we were floating by...we missed you buddy!), our worst fear was realized. Just south of 63rd there we sat in the middle of a 6" deep river. Al tough I had speculated that with my additional insulation, I could out wait Pat and he would be the one to give-in and step into the frigid water, it was Kayakman Dan that plunged his feet into the icy water. A couple of tugs and a few wet steps later, we were back "floatin' down the Dupe".
The things you do for your little brother!!
My recently waterproofed boots and my Goretex socks worked quite well, not that I want to try that again. Other than getting stuck a few times, the trip was uneventful without any significant events.
Check out "My photos on Flickr" in the "Other sites to see" section to the right.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

February 2007....a deep freeze

February has been an extremely cold month with temperatures dipping below zero. We are in the 2nd to last weekend in the month and my fear is our consecutive month kayaking streak will come to an end. Both Kent and Pat talked to me today about kayaking so I am not alone in the quest to keep the streak alive. The west branch appears to have many areas of frozen river, however, as you can see from the pictures taken today, the east branch seems to be flowing ice-free.

The forecast next week is for upper 30's and rain so we should be good to go. Although it will be pushing the steak to the end towards the end of a month, it won't be as bad as the miserable conditions Pat and I endured on the last Sunday in April 2006.

Hopefully I will have an entry next week summarizing how we kept the streak alive!!

Friday, January 26, 2007

January 2007

The streak hits 14 consecutive months.
1/1/07 WDR. Pat and Kent in tandem, Dan in single for the 2nd annual New Year's day Float down the Dupe. Put in at Centennial Park Park with takeout at Knoch Knolls.
1/6/07 - Happy birthday to me (and Kent)! Pat and Dan put in at Community Park with takeout at Royce Road.
1/707 - EDR. Kent and Matt in Kent's tandem, Dan in single. Put in at Hidden Lake with takeout at Royce road. This was a combination of 2 separate trips, Dan and Pat had just done the 2nd half the day before. Had a portgage through the Arboretum, but overall a nice trip with some nice water action.

November and December 2006

Dan and Pat in tandem kayak. Put in at Centennial beach
and takeout at Knoch Knolls.

Dan and Pat in tandem kayak. Temperature in low teens,
guage at 6.76. Put in at Community Park takeout at
Royce rd. No ice in river but ice forned on boat during trip.
This was day after first winter storm of the year, trees
were snow covered and beautiful. Nature highlights
include a large owl sitting abount 15 ft upin a tree right on
river bank, he did not fl away. Two beavers dove into the
water as we passed, they were about 10 ft away, Pat
screamed like a school girl. Full size doe was in the water,
about 10 ft away, just watched as we passed. The section
in Seven Bridges that has rapids normally had the most
water action we have experienced on the Dupe. It was
excellent. The guage at 6.76 is about as high as it can be
to get under the pedestrian/ bike path bridge near 87th
in Green Valley. We had to do the limbo the get under
the brdge.

Dan and Kent in tandem kayak. Temp about 42, guage
at 5.76. Put in at Centennial Beach and takeout at 95th
street. Both of us wore red Santa hats, got good reaction
from multiple people. One woman shouted "Ho, Ho, Ho"
…Kent responded: "It's Row, Row, Row"…very quick and
funny. Saw 2 deer laying right on river bank, limited bird

Dan and Pat in tandem kayak. River at 7.92 put in at
Centennial beach, takeout at Knoch Knolls. Completed
total trip in 54 minutes, only took 19 minutes to get to
Pioneer park and 45 minutes to get to Ring/95th.
River was high and fast, rolling, boiling in sections.
Excellent. Pat wore a Santa hat and Dan had white
beard, red hat and red Santa top. Numerous postive
comments and joyous reactions.

October 2006

East BDR. Kent and Dan in tandem, put in at Royce, paddled
through the trout farm in Bolingbrook and takeout at DuPage
River park. There was a major blockage which resulted in a
portage. At one point we thought the river ended but it actually
continued through a very narrow section going back in what
appeared to be in the opposite direction. It eventually wound back
and connected to the main river again.

West BDR. Dan and Pat in tandem, Kent in single. Put in at
Jefferson St., takeout at Knoch Knolls. Gauge at 5.8, distance
approx 6 miles. On Monday 10/2/06 the gauge was over 9 ft, the
highest we have seen. Although the river was high, it was not the
highest we have been on. This was 6.4 in February. A "highlight"
of the trip was when Kent had to drop a deuce and we stopped off
at a gas station in Naperville. From the car I saw the attendant
hold up 1 finger and Kent responded by holding up 2. Kent was
denied the privilege of using the facilities. We had quite the

West BDR. Dan and Lisa put in at new launch at Pioneer Park,
takeout at Knoch Knolls, completed trip in less than 1 hour.
This was Lisa's 1st river trip. At Knoch Knolls talked
to a woman who was picking up dad and 3 kids in a canoe. At
Pioneer Park talked to a couple taking out their kayak. This
was a beautfiul sunny and 70 day, the most boats we have seen.

East BDR. Kent and Cole, Dan and Steven in tandem kayaks.
Put in at Hidden Lake takeout at Community Pk, gauge at 5.25.
Had to portage at just under 1 mile mark, 1st use of the saw
to help clear path. Total distance 3.14 miles in a little over an

East BDR. Dan and Kent in tandem, Mark in solo. Put in at
Community Park takeout at Royce Rd. Gauge at 5.9,water level
noticably high. Temp in the 50's, used skirt on solo but not
tandem. With high water did not have any issues like previous
time when we got stuck 3 times. Altough trees were colorful in the
area, on the river most trees were bare. Highlight of the trip was
deer entering on river left and exiting on river right.

September 2006

9/2/06 West BDR. Kent and Dan in tandem kayak,
river at 4.88. Put in north of North ave, projected
takeout at Mack rd. River was very low, sometimes
both of us had to get out to move the boat. Over-
grown weeds in river. We were averaging less than
3 mph. At Gary Mills road they were dredging the
river and we had to get out. As Kent processed a
few of the consumed beers, I went ahead to see how
far our portage would be. I told Kent….."there is no
river". The river was dry as far as we could see.
We walked 1.7 miles to where our car was at
Mack rd. The trip from North ave to Gary Mills road
was approx 7.3 miles in 2.5 hours.

9/16/2006 East BDR. Mark T. and Kent in tandem
kayak, Dan in single. Put in at Community park
takeout at Royce rd. Collected approx. 10 balls (hard,
soft, basket, soccer,golf, wiffle,play). Had serious tree
downage in 3 areas all after about 90% of trip was
complete. Were able to grunt our way through,
no portage. River at 5.15