“Spend as much time as possible on mountains, in small boats, or otherwise out in the weather; if you never get wet, cold, exhausted or scared, you won’t properly appreciate being dry, warm, rested and safe.” ~ Peter Jay

"I’m an adventuring river rat at heart. Put me on a floating piece of driftwood and I’m happy." ~ Christina Glauner

"There’s folly and foolhardiness on one side and daring and calculation on the other." ~ C.S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower novels

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Paddling With The Diedrich's

About a week ago I received an email from Cory Diedrich, inviting me to join him, his family, and his sister on a cruise on the Niobrara River for today. I was leaning heavily towards joining them until Saturday. I let Cory know that I should probably stay in Pierre for a combination of reasons that included the wind forecast for Valentine having 30+ mph gusts. The wind forecast was enough to dampen the Diedrich clan's plans. They decided to join me for a paddle in Pierre.

We decided to depart from the Oahe Marina just below the dam and end at Griffin Park in Pierre. I met them at Griffin Park, where we loaded my boat and gear into their van and trailer. We left my pickup and Cory's sister's (Dee's) pickup at Griffin Park and drove up to Oahe Marina.

We took a leisurely pace to enjoy the day on our way downstream. The high temp was in the mid 90s and the wind was from the southeast in the mid teens with 20 mph gusts, relatively calm for my trips. We made a few stops at sandbars along the way and noticed many buffalo/bison bones and teeth in the water just downstream of the stilling basin. When we reached the causeway boat ramp, we helped Cory's wife, Janey, and his sons, Sam and Aiden, over the causeway as a shorter option to our trip. Cory, Dee, and I continued on around the La Framboise island and back up to Griffin Park. Our total mileage was 11.3 miles.

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