Western Manitowish River
Distance:
15 miles
Duration:
6 hours
Difficulty:
Easy
Wilderness:

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Route Segment Distance
 Highway 47 to Murray's Landing 15 miles



Overview

Water Type: Meandering river.

Camping:  There are four primitive campsites on this route.

Additional Information: There are no take-out points between Highway 47 and Murray’s Landing.


Directions to Put-in:  Put-in is located 0.1 mile south of Highway 51 on Highway 47/182 in the town of Manitowish.  There is minimal parking available on the shoulder of Highway 47/182.

Directions to Take-out:  Take-out is located 5.5 miles off Highway 51 on Murray Landing Road.  There is parking available available at the boat ramp at Murray's Landing.


The most remote and wild section of the Manitowish River begins with a put-in on river-right at the Highway 47 bridge in the small town of Manitowish.  There are no put-in or take-out points from here until you reach Murray’s Landing on the Turtle Flambeau Flowage.  This section of the river is more marshy and less forested than the rest. Beware of a South wind, as it can make paddling difficult and will extend the duration of your journey. 

A couple river bends past the Highway 47 put-in is DNR campsite #54, located on a high bank on the left.  During the next 6 miles, you will pass DNR campsites #55 and #56 on the left as well.  Look for kingfishers defending their burrows, holes drilled into the sandy riverbanks.  Keep an eye out for other wildlife as well, including beaver, deer, porcupine, and maybe even a coyote. Just past DNR campsite #56, a tree has fallen across the river.  To traverse the tree requires some coordination and, if possible, teamwork, but it can be done. 

About 9.5 miles into the trip, the Bear River joins the Manitowish from the left and the two combine to become the larger and wider Flambeau River. DNR campsite #57 is located just past this intersection, on the right. This is a popular campsite that, depending on the season, may provide paddlers with a sweet treat in the form of native berries. Downriver from this campsite, look for a sandy edge on the right that may serve as a nice resting stop when water levels are low.  

As the newly created Flambeau River enters the Turtle Flambeau Flowage, the waterway widens greatly.  Look for a large tan/gray boulder up ahead.  Glance right when you reach the boulder and you should be able to see Murray’s Landing. Turn right as soon as you can after the boulder and hug the left shoreline to navigate your way just under one mile to the take-out point at Murray’s Landing.