Canoeing the Wolf River, Wisconsin

Expert paddler Mike Svob has been canoeing and kayaking the rivers of the Midwest for 30 years. He paddled more than a thousand miles to complete these books. Below are brief descriptions of the canoe trips that Mike goes into detail with in his books with maps. The maps are very useful, showing rapids, take in and take out points and other things of interest.


Wolf 1-Post Lake Dam to Pearson-Langlade County-10 miles. This is a peaceful flatwater outing, highlighted by forest, marshland, sand banks and wild rice beds. Put in downstream left from the Post Lake dam. The park here has toilets and plenty of parking. After nearly a mile of straightaway paddling the river curves sharply to the left, with a marshy area on the right. The Langlade County Park is just downstream. Wild rice grows in the channel but there is a clear path to paddle through. A short distance down from Turle Lake are several islands. At 2.7 miles Swamp Creek enters from the right. A large boulder in the middle of the river at a sharp right hand turn signals the river left access from Lost lake Road at 3.8 miles. The wide mouth of Pickeral Creek appears on the left, in a right hand bend at 8.7 miles. Take out at the river left landing just downstream from the County T bridge.


Wolf 2-Pearson To Lily- Langlade County-12.5 miles. This section has narrow wooded stretches and marshy lowlands, with three different sets of riffles and rapids. Camping is not allowed along the river Water levels are usually good except during dry spells. Put in at the County T bridge. Downstream the Hunting River enters on the right. The 2.2 miles to County A are rather wide with lots of marsh grass. There is a rock garden beneath the Cty. A bridge and beyond. Class II Wendigo Rapids begins in the first left hand curve past the bridge. It is several hundred yards long and there are plenty of rocks. At 4.2 miles is the River Road Landing. Strauss Rapids at 8.5 miles, usually a low Class I-II comes in two pitches above Military Park. Overton Rapids at 9.5 miles is about 1/2 mile of enjoyable riffles. Take out downstream right at the Hwy. 52 bridge.


Wolf 3- Lily to Langlade-Langlade County-15 miles. This is a whitewater paddlers delight. There are many Class I and II rapids, with some intervening flatwater. Put in at the Hwy. 52 bridge. At 1.3 miles is SAt. Claire Rapids also known as Eagle Run, is a long winding series of riffles in a gentle boulder garden. Big Slough Gundy is next at 2.5 miles, a wide Class II boulder garden,about 15o yards long with a steep gradient. Just downstream is Little Slough Gundy, a solid Class II drop and boulder garden that should be scouted on the right.. Portage if in doubt. After the Wolf Road access at 3.5 miles is the Big Sheen and Little Sheen Rapids followed by almst two miles of quietwater. At 6.5 miles is Burnt Point Rapids, an easy Class II. At about 9 miles is Oxbow rapids. The first two pitches are easy Class I-II, but the third is a solid Class II that is several hundred yards long. Two more rapids follow, Cedar and Hemlock rapids. the last 3 miles have three more challenging boulder garden rapids. All are Class II. Take out at the DNR landing at the Hwy. 64 bridge downstream right.


Wolf 4- Langlade to Gilmore's Mistake-Langlade County-10.5 miles. This is one of the Midwest's most popular destinations, suitable for intermediate and advanced paddlers and for rafters. Put in at the Hwy. 64 bridge. The river begins wide and slow, when it narrows you are comong to Rocky Rips an easy Class I-II rapids.After a stretch of quietwater, Class II Crowle Rapids begins followed by Horserace Rapids at 1.8 miles and Twenty Day Rapids at 4 miles. Two miles below Twenty Day is Herb's Landing on the right. At the suspension footbridge at 8 miles you come to Boy Scout Rapids, a Class II boulder garden 1/2 mile long.. After that there are 3 Class I-II boulder gardens that require rock dodging. Hanson's Rapids at 9.2 miles is a challenging Class II+ rapids. A mile of flatwater follows Hansons. The trip ends dramatically with a solid Class II called Gilmore's Mistake. Take out immediately after the rock garden, on river left at the Wild Wolf Inn raft landing.


Wolf 5-County M to Big Smoky Falls-Menominee County-12.3 miles. A blue ribbon Class II-III whitewater run, for skilled paddlers only. Put in at the DNR landing at the County M bridge. You will pass Gilmore's Mistake alongside the Wolf River Inn.At 1.5 miles Burnt Shanty Rapids begins which is a Class II boulder garden. A series of islands follows. Past the islands is an almst continuous Class II rapids in the bends. Just upstream from the WW bridge is Class II-III Pissmire Falls. A long quiet strech follows. At 8 miles you come upon Sullivan Falls, a short Class II rapids precedes this. The Sullivan is a 7 foot river wide waterfall. A short stretch of flatwater and you are at Class II+ Ducknest Rapids which is several hundred yards long. At 9.7 miles you come to Class II+ Teakettle Rapids. It can be scouted on the left side. The Class III Dells Rapids follows the Teakettle. When you see the steep walls looming ahead get out and scout on the left.. The Saturday Islands and 1.5 miles of flatwater follow the Dells. Finally a large island announces Big Smoky Falls. There are big drops on both sides of the island. The one on the left, a Class IV-V should be avoide under any circumstances. To scout Class III Big Smoky Falls from the right, get out at the rocky outcropping on the right shore of the river near the head of the island.. There is a take out on river left just before the falls, upstream from a footbridge.Or youcan take out below the Falls on the left, at the landing.