Get to know Minnesota waterways up close

  • Article by: Greg Seitz
  • Updated: July 26, 2013 - 5:57 PM

They’re something to behold. So find a canoe and get to know them up close.

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owatonnabillJul. 27, 13 7:12 AM

Rivers can be other-worldly. One example: the Kettle River which flows through Banning State Park only 90 miles or so north of Minneapolis has in the space of only a few miles flows through picturesque forests, wide placid areas where fish and picnicking abound, and over the thunderous and terrifying length of Hell's Gate Rapids. Yet there is another side. Not too many years back owatonnabill and Spousal Unit canoed the Cannon River from Faribault to Northfield--just a few hours with no real challenging rapids to worry about. Again, similar views: Rockwellian farms, beautiful forests, kids in straw hats floating bobbers from can poles. But the view straight down was something else again: beer cans, broken bottles, tires, name it. Yes. Our rivers are a resource. But let us do a better job of respecting them.

Willy53Jul. 27, 13 7:43 AM

Hello, DNR, are you reading this. The author is dead on about your failure to promote our rivers. The DNR is all about fishing from motor boats, stocking lakes and streams, promoting hunting and trapping of large mammals and even small birds and encouraging the use of motorized four wheelers on remote logging trails. The current Commissioner carries on this decades old tradition that devalues silent sports and glorifies the extractive ones. It is as if they are paranoid that encouraging too much silent sport activity such as kayaking, canoeing and xcountry skiing and snowshoeing or even hiking will start subtracting the numbers of hunters, fishermen, fourwheelers, snowmobilers and god forbid, trappers. Our rivers are some of the wildest places left in Minnesota outside of the Boundary Waters. There is a growing trend of youth to engage in these silent sports and reject some of the more extractive ones. They are worried about preservation and the overuse and abuse of Minnesot's natural landscapes. They are by and large more ecologically educated than yesterday's young natural resource users. It is not a problem if fewer young people hunt. It's not a problem if fewer young people reject the use of motor sports. And it certainly is no problem if fewer young people take up the extraction of mammals through trapping. The point I'm making is that the DNR has been and continues to be led by resource extractive recreational commissioniers. How about the next Commissioner come from a background of ecological management strong in the promotion of silent sports that use less land, cost less to maintain and are practiced by a rapidly growing segment of young outdoor sports enthusiasts.

mmediaJul. 27, 13 9:22 AM

If you plan to canoe a MN river or stream, the most important piece of equipment is not a life jacket, but a Wire Cutter! Make sure it's a big one because some farmers have even strung hog panel across. Seriously, DNR, when will you enforce this?

Douglind33Jul. 27, 1310:42 AM

Have canoed Kettle, St Croix, Cannon and many North Shore streams. The waterways down here are a collection of aquatic garbage dumps. Besides the trash, the pollution is disgusting, esp. the Minnesota near Chaska. We have a SERIOUS water quality problem that's growing worse by the year. The silence from the DNR and the legislature is deafening.

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