Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Living up to its name

Originally uploaded by Iron Bieso
The Big Sioux River is truly big these days, due in part to all the rain eastern South Dakota has been getting. Paddlers are advised to use caution, but to remember the river is not closed, it's just very high and moving fast.

Paddler Bruce Wylie sent in these images from a trip he did last week on the BSR between Dell Rapids and Baltic. Other paddlers including Pat Dunn said the route took less than half the normal time, and that many alternative shortcuts are formed where the river is flowing across fields and through new channels.

Dunn said a Sunday trip on the route, which normally takes 3-4 hours at this time of year, took her only 90 minutes to complete.

Wylie mentioned that most of the rocks in the rapids at the dells were submerged and that there were not a lot of new sweepers and strainers, so the runs were fun, fast, and smooth.

As with any moving water, caution is key, but the Big Sioux certainly is big especially when compared to its normal state around the end of June.

Don't forget to scroll down, club members are hitting the Big Sioux this weekend, and there's a moonlight paddle upcoming as well.


Here's the low-head dam at Flandreau, showing just how powerful the BSR flow is these days.

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