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A late start to the paddling season in 2011 due to cool weather, high water and brisk winds.  The first canoe trip of the year was May 12th with LWSRB members Bill Lundberg, Jerry Dorscheid and Ron Leys and FLOW Co-Chair Timm Zumm.  The threat of severe weather changed our plans and instead of paddling on the river, we headed to Goodweiler Lake east of Muscoda.  The slough is a popular fishing spot and has abundant wildlife.  With Timm pulling a trailer full of kayaks, we headed to Goodyís.  Bill, Jerry and Timm took to the kayaks and Ron and I headed out in the canoe.  We saw a wide variety of birdlife and some major beaver huts.  Blue heron, geese, ducks, sand pipers, yellow legs, red-winged blackbirds and herds of big carp in the shallows. 


On May 16th, I paddled with former State Representative Spencer Black and a group of students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  I had the pleasure of giving a guest lecture to the class earlier in the semester and was happy to be able to paddle with them from Sauk City to Arena.  Mr. Black was one of the key architects of the Riverway law and was one of the leading environmental legislators in the state for decades before retiring from the Legislature in 2010.  It had been a few years since we paddled together so it was nice to see the practical benefits of the Riverway law up close and personal.


We set out on a sunny but cool Monday morning, stopped for lunch at Cactus/Ferry Bluff and then continued to Arena arriving right on time for the rendezvous with the shuttle.  Along the way, we were treated to sightings of pelicans, eagles, turtles (including the largest turtles Iíve seen on the river), deer, sand hill cranes, a rough legged hawk, turkey vultures, scarlet tanagers, indigo buntings, blue winged warblers, geese and a garter snake.  The snake resulted in a most humorous situation as one of the young men on the trip was startled by the little fella on the path and gave an effeminate squeal before jumping 4 feet in the air!  A macho maneuver if I ever did see one.


As water levels stabilize and the weather turns more springlike, Iím sure there will be many more adventures to provide blog entries.  Enjoy the photos and, more importantly, make sure you get out there and enjoy the Riverway!!!


Pictures of paddling.


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Last Modified:  5/20/2011 12:08:06 PM
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