Early in the morning I left Lowell and arrived to drop my canoe and gear at Flowing Wells Park west of White Cloud. A short drive to the end of Bingham Road provided a great parking spot and marked the start of my bike ride back to the canoe. Having paddled this stretch in 2019 in the Double Dam River Raid from White Cloud to Hesperia, I was very excited to be on the mighty White once again.
I wet my waders and a spinner at 7:30am and began to fish from Flowing Wells eastward toward White Cloud. Four small browns helped me pass the time while waiting for a good friend, Trevor. At 9:30am, he, an amateur alligator wrestler and almost-semi-pro gymnast, arrived to provide entertainment and bow-support for the day….he fished a little too.
The weather and river did not disappoint. Blue sky and warm air made us feel like we had disconnected from all of our stressors. When it became windy (quite windy), Trevor was quick to think positively and exclaimed “I’m glad wind doesn’t hurt”. Oh, how soon we forget about the long, cold wind of winter…and no one could blame us on such a great day!
We found the paddling conditions to be great, minus nine portages over deadfall, two of which were fully matured trees traversing the river, making fun balance beams and rootball mountains for Trevor, while somehow I hove the canoe solo over the fallen timber.
Along the way, we passed one other angler, a treed porcupine, a commanding perched osprey, a banded water snake, and a dinosaur of a snapper! Naturally, Trevor’s native-Florida blood sent him involuntarily to wrangle it. When you can’t wrestle gators, I suppose snappers are Michigan’s best alternative. Too bad he didn’t try for the porcupine….
At many points along the way, we got in the water to fish, netting over 20 brown trout, mostly small, but fun nonetheless. We arrived at the truck at 4:45pm and returned to Flowing Wells with several new memories we get to talk about on our next adventure.
Written by: Keith Disselkoen