Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Details for Saturday ... and more

Originally uploaded by Iron Bieso
The next SDCA event is a cruise on the Skunk Creek in Sioux Falls.
The event begins at 5:30 a.m. Saturday, May 23.

Member Jerry Foy will play host, and we'll launch from his back yard.
In this image, Jerry's house is in the top left corner

Jerry lives at 529 N. Blue Bell Lane in Sioux Falls. For some reason, Google won't map it, but the directions are easy: Exit I-29 at 12th Street and head west to La Mesa, then go north on that street.
Take La Mesa to Fifth Street (which is known as Song Bird on the west side of the street, then go left on Song Bird for three blocks. Take a right on Blue Bell Lane to 529. He has a three-car garage, and his phone number is (605) 359-5517.

Jerry said the water levels are a bit low, so be ready to wade a little, get a few new boat scrapes, and in general to have fun. There's some rain in the forecast so perhaps it'll refill a bit before Saturday.

Hopefully it won't be as low as this shot Jerry included from a recent run on the Split Rock Creek between Garretson and Palisades State Park.

But chances are there will be some low spots. An easy trick for kayakers, to avoid getting out, is to set your paddle across your cockpit, reach down with both hands, and press/pull/drag your boat through the shallow spots. It doesn't always work, but it beats entering/exiting dozens of times.

The early start should give paddlers a chance to see some wildlife. Owls abound along the creek, and Jerry said he usually sees deer and sometimes turkey along the bank.

From Jerry's house it's about three hours to take-out on Western Avenue. Shuttling will be arranged that morning. The possibility of taking out at Cliff Avenue is there, so we'll see what people want to do and plan accordingly.

In other news, don't forget the SDCA paddling fair June 7 at Lake Alvin. It's a great chance to try a new boat or if you have yet to buy, to paddle before you spend. Last year we had a great time, great weather, and a number of people were able to see what kayaks and canoes have to offer.

On June 6, there's a cruise set on the Missouri River near Vermillion. A PDF with the directions is here: Mulberry Bend Directions

The Vermillion event is set to celebrate the development of the Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail. The route follows part of the trail. There are cockpits in kayaks available for rent for folks who want to go but have no boat. Missouri River Expeditions, a kayaking outfitter based near Gayville, will host/guide this event.

Tim Cowman with the team developing the Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail is the contact on that event. You can e-mail him at, or visit the MNRRWT site at this link:

Lastly, there's been some talk of fences across waterways. The rules, guidelines, and a contact to report these things is all below, compliments of the South Dakota Dept. of Natural Resources.

Legal fencing in South Dakota
Online at:
More info on streams and fencing:
The contact is Michael DeFea at 605-773-3352, or
Landowner Responsibilities
A landowner who fences any navigable waterway must register the fence location, and mark the fence and gate, so both are visible upstream and downstream. Landowners intending to build fences and landowners who already have fences in place must comply with these laws. Failure to comply with these laws is a Class 2 misdemeanor. Following is a complete list of landowner requirements and gate specifications.
Landowner Requirements
1) Registration of the fence with the Chief Engineer includes the following:
a) The name, address, and telephone number of the landowner proposing to construct or maintain the fence.
b) The name, address, and telephone number of the person responsible for maintaining the fence if different than the landowner.
c) The location of the fence where it crosses the stream, described by its direction and distance from the nearest legal section corner, including section number, township, and range.
2) Install and maintain a functional gate in the fence over the stream or, if allowed by variance, immediately adjacent to the public right of way to allow passage of boats, canoes, other vessels, snowmobiles, and pedestrians.
3) Remove the gate or keep it open when livestock are not present, unless a variance has been granted.
Trespassing or criminal acts such as vandalism should be reported to local law enforcement.
Minimum Gate Specifications
1) The gate must have a minimum overhead clearance of 6 feet, and a minimum opening of 6 feet wide.
2) The gate opening must be outlined with reflective or highly visible material.
3) Fencing materials may be used to close the gap on each side of the gate between the gate and the stream bank.
4) Reflectors, spaced at a maximum of 25 feet, must be attached to the fencing that connects the gate to the stream banks.
5) All reflectors or highly visible material must be visible both upstream and downstream.
6) The gate must lie between the ordinary high water marks of the stream.

The DENR Water Rights Program is responsible for processing fence registrations and processing variance requirements. Any questions regarding fencing issues, or location of registered fences, should be made to DENR, Water Rights Program, 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD 57501. Phone (605) 773-3352. Registration forms are available on the Web at:

No comments: