Boundary Waters, Trip Reports, BWCA, Stories

Snake River Nebraska Sandhills
by SunCatcher

Trip Type: Paddling Canoe
Entry Date: 06/11/2010
Entry Point: Other
Exit Point: Other  
Number of Days: 4
Group Size: 12
Trip Introduction:
The Snake River in the Nebraska Sandhills. Trip Start: 32 miles South of Merriman, NE Trip End: 32 miles South of Nenzal, NE 40 winding River Miles (30 miles as the Crow flys) 12 folk (11 of them 21-32 years old) and Me (Grandpa)53
The Snake River is a Spring fed River through the Sandhills of Nebraska. It is all on Private Ranch Ground, So permission is required before leaving. The "Upper Snake" as it is called is loaded with Trout Rainbow and Browns. It is a different sort of Beautiful but a special place in Nebraska. This trip starts about 30 miles South of Merriman, NE and Ends about 30 miles South of Nenzal, NE. Forty River miles. The Snake could be divided into Three segments. The First Segment is a meandering sandy river with sandbars and slow moving current. The second series is fast flowing, Narrowing river with a "Forest" in the middle stretch. It is winding and fast and furious. The Third stretch is back to meandering and very little trees. It is a wonderful place.

Group 12 Six canoes I was invited by my son Daniel who is a fisheries biologist fot the Florid Fish and Game. He flew Home just for this trip. He invited me to go with him and his friends. They called me "Grandpa" The 11 of them were age between 21 - 31 and me 53 (Grandpa) it was hoot and I felt privleged to tag along.

Day1: High 78 Low 60 Partly cloudy and not to bad of day. We hit the water about 3 pm after a long drive. We set up camp about 7 pm. It started raining about 10:30 pm. (The river is in Mtn Time Zone) We had a good day, onlu a few fences. The Snake runs through Cattle Country so you have Fences to contend with. The were several that didnt know how to set up a tent in an appropriate place (there shit got soaked) Good lesson. It rained about 1.5 inches and the River was up about 1.5 ft above normal the second monrning. Running much faster and much more furious then normal.

Day2: High 58 Low 54 It rained about 75/100 today. It drizled or Rained all day. We had a fairly long day. Set up camp at 7 pm and went to bed at 8 pm. Got up about 8 am, but the "kids" drank all night and didn't get going to NOON. I was tired the night before but ripping and raring to go the next day. Our tent stayed dry. About half the crew had wet tents and wet clothes and wet sleeping bags. Got up early to out of camp about Noon (damn drunks)

Day3: High 63 Low 55 Drizzle and later RAIN. We had a short day. The leader decided to stop about 4 pm and set up camp. Good in retrospect as they were all hungover. We had a great fire and dried some of the stuff out. (ours was dry) I drank some beers tonight and was not looking forward to the day tomorrow. We were getting ready for the "Forest" The Forest is about 2 hours of paddling with fallen cedar trees about 30 footers that have fallen into the river. It is treacherous, tough, a challenge. Fast Current and quick snappy bends, with a tree in front of you is TOUGH. I was a little scared as this was my first time and Son Dan warned me it would be. We swamped 3x today. What a bitch. 

Day 4: High 63 Low 52 Day started out cloudy 100% Drizzle but at Noon the sun came out. It was a GREAT Day few trees and we got done about 3:20 pm Beer Drinking Day for most...but I had to drive home so took it easy on the beer.

The Snake River in General Four Falls in 40 miles 1. Six Foot Falls Really nice 2. Horseshoe Falls 3. Midnight Alley (all the river come to this narrow spot it is a bitch) 4. Twin Falls (Beautiful)

Lots of Fences 14 or so that you must cross (over or under)

The Forest what a Challenge

Things we saw: Turkey's Deer, and Antelope and a BobCat

Thanks Dan for inviting me I loved the Challenge and am going back next yr. (Swamped 7x in 4 days)