Very scenic river with mild whitewater, suitable to novice paddlers. Commercial outfitters are available for canoe or kayak trips on various reaches of this river.
Since there are many springs in the headwaters, flows tend to be very consistent, making this river boatable most of the year.It is important to note that while a map will show numerous potential access points, many of them are 'off-limits' as launch/landing sites, being designated as access only for fishermen.
According to The Canadian Encyclopedia, the name means "charred wood" or "burnt wood". Also, the correct pronunciation is "bwah broo-ley" (hear it spoken by going to dictionary.reference.com and clicking the 'speaker' icon), though you'll almost never hear it pronounced that way. In fact, there are many who will look askance at you for being so 'snooty' as to employ what they consider a 'mock French' pronunciation! Indeed, this river is often simply referred to as "the Brule". This can create some confusion, however, since there are two other relatively nearby Brule Rivers. One forms the border between Wisconsin and Michigan, and (after the confluence with the Paint and the Michigamme) becomes the Menominee River. While it does contain some whitewater, the rapids are no more than class I (marginally to class II) and there is so much flatwater that it must really be considered more of a flatwater trip for canoeists. The other Brule River (much less likely to cause confusion) being up in Minnesota, well North/East from Duluth, towards the Canadian border. This Brule contains some quite significant whitewater, and is detailed in the Minnesota section of this website.
MnktoDave has a fine video from a trip on the Bois Brule River:
Also, Morrall River Films has a great series of documentaries of various Upper Midwest Rivers, including this one on the Bois Brule:
This is above the listed put-in, and lies on a section of river which has no boater access. Landings do exist, but are designated for fishing access only!
There is access to the section above this from stone's bridge landing.
The cited gauge lies on this reach (about two miles downstream from the put-in). As a result, the reading will be a very accurate reflection of boatability of this reach.
Drainage area at gauge: 118 sq.mi.
All time minimum flow: 74 cfs
90% of time flow exceeds: 119 cfs
10% of time flow exceeds: 253 cfs
All time maximum flow: 1,700 cfs
10/90 ratio ('flashy-ness'): 2.1 (under 3 is fairly steady, over 10 is quite 'flashy') Average runnable days per year: 298
Offseason ('Ice') gauge conversion:
1.55 = 135cfs
1.80 = 180cfs
1.92 = 200cfs
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
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