FOX CITIES, Wis. — The Fox-Wisconsin Heritage Parkway and North East Wisconsin Paddlers Inc. have created a new paddle adventure, set for Saturday and Sunday, May 17-18, on the Lower Wisconsin River, for the 2014 season.
CANOEtananny is two-day paddle totaling more than 16 miles, from Bridgeport, Wis., to Wauzeka, Wis., that will include heritage tours and a music jam for outdoor lovers of all ages and experience levels.
CANOEtananny is part of a Joint-Effort Marketing (JEM) grant awarded by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism to encourage travel and support local economies with new, existing and one-of-a-kind events in the state.
CANOEtananny takes in the historic, cultural, environmental and natural heritage of southwestern Wisconsin with two heritage tours, overnight camping, excursions to local communities and folklore entertainment.
CANOEtananny launches at Bridgeport Landing, a secluded local fishing spot in Bridgeport, Wis. Participants will paddle along the river’s majestic bluffs with the hills of Iowa as a backdrop, and then enter the muddy Mississippi, with its barge traffic and enthusiastic recreational boaters. The 8-mile trek will conclude at Wyalusing State Park, where the group will make camp. Campsite fees are free, however a Wisconsin State Park sticker is needed for admittance.
There are two heritage tours planned after the paddle, including a drive up to Pike’s Peak State Park’s 500-foot bluff that looks out over the confluence of the Mississippi and Wisconsin rivers, and the two suspension bridges connecting Iowa and Wisconsin. Paddlers can also take a hike to see the Indian mounds at Effigy Mounds National Monument.
The group will head in to Prairie Du Chien that Saturday evening for dinner, and then head back to the campsite for a CANOEtananny, featuring live music and paddle stories led by Milwaukee folksinger Coventry Jones. Everyone is encouraged to bring their own musical instrument to jam into the night.
Sunday, May 18, the paddlers will launch at Plum Creek Landing on the Kickapoo River and continue to Wauzeka, a distance of about 8.5 river miles. At the start, Plum Creek Road towers above on a bluff. The area is remote with few signs of human interaction, until a set of power lines on Highway 60. From there to Wauzeka, the river is more open. The group will finish their outdoor adventure with lunch at the Horseshoe Tavern in Wauzeka.
Participants can paddle for one or both days, and each paddle is $10 per day. Children, ages 15 and younger, are free.
For more information and to register, visit heritageparkway.org/heritage-paddle/.
From the May 14-20, 2014, issue