This short section contains four big drops: Nawadaha, Manido, Manabezho, and Swinging Bridge (along with a few lesser drops). All can be run by confident, experienced paddlers. All others will enjoy the impressive views (perhaps before or after running some upper reaches of this river).
The following video gives a good view of the drops short run:
USGS lists a site here with drainage area of 358 square miles.
Pick a line that you like! Depending upon where you run this, it may be an easy, sliding drop (far left), a series of short ledge drops (more toward the center), or a big ledge to launch a boof (well to river-right).
A bigger series of short ledge drops.
An impressive wide sheer falls, and a definite 'photo-op' (opportunity for great photo/video). This has reportedly been run quite a number of places across its width, though the most common is fairly well (though not 'tight') to river-left, aiming to launch off a 'point' extending a bit further out (downstream). At most flows, there apparently is sufficient depth to either 'boof' or 'pencil' (according to reports), though at least one boater has suffered a nasty piton resulting in boat and body damage.
Just below Manabezho, will be a series of waves and holes (some of which may be a bit aggressive!) leading toward a LARGE island. By far the majority of the flow heads to the left. (Only at times of quite elevated flows will there be anything more than a trickle or rivulet down the right side.) As the left side heads down to pass under a suspension footbridge, you'll encounter quite a chaotic rush. It is impressive to come here at low flows to see the kettles scoured into the bedrock through this area. (Once you've seen this area 'dry', you'll see how being upside-down or out of your boat through here could be brutal.) As you pass under the footbridge the current slows as you head toward Lake Superior.
Ran the Lower Presque Isle October 27th, 2013 at 6.1 on the South Boundary Rd. bridge gauge. Earlier this year there was a massive log jam river left against the middle bridge pillar and the shore which blocked a lot of the flow from running against the gauge. The park has cut out the jam, so the bridge reading is accurate as of 10/27/13. The only issue is new wood along the run below the bridge. The wood on the right side boof of Nawadaha Falls is still there, but looks cleaner than last year. We were able to run everything fine, with only Manido Falls presenting an issue running river left, as a small diameter log is laying ~8' off the left bank pointed downstream. We skirted the log on the right, still pretty close to 'main line' on the left side. Center right on Manabezho Falls has a pretty massive log laying up against the falls, which was there earlier this year. A small tree is still dangling over the left line in Zoom Flume. Where the river splits (left is Zoom Flume and right channel only runs with a lot of water), right channel had a huge log teetering over the edge (which we pushed in earlier this year) has floated away. This means the Presque must have had a big water event this past summer!
Matthew Cooper, Patrick Duffy, and Kaz ran this in early August when the Black was running 500 or so.
Patrick found a rock when running the furthest tip of Manabezo and gave his creeker a nasty nose job when he over rotated trying to pencil in. basically, his bow wentback into the curtain of water and he landed on his face, so dont do that!
Other than that, the Presque is amazing and the trail that runs along it os equally so!
Gauge referenced is on the Black. Watersheds are close, parallel and relatively similar in nature. Max/min are estimates.
Anyone who boats this reach is encouraged to add a 'comment' below with additional gauge information and/or correlations.
A paddlers gauge is painted on the center bridge pier at South Boundary Road. I'm not experienced enough with this reach and this gauge to be able to relate 'min' and 'max. A recent look at it with the water at 7.5' revealed what I would characterize as a moderately high level.
In general, visual inspection of the final drop (Swinging Bridge) should be best indicator of runnability.
Disclaimer: Be aware that indication of a 'runnable' level does not necessarily mean that the river is runnable. In winter, gauge readings may be 'ice affected'. Sections of the river may be impassable due to ice. Use discretion for winter and early spring runs.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
Use the map below to calculate how
to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.
Right Line Nawadaha
Left Line Manabezho
Center Line Nawadaha
Manabezho Falls CJ Arnold 5
Manabezho Falls CJ Arnold 3
The scenery is outstanding on the Presque Isle.
Manabezo Falls on the Presque Isle.
Looking up from Swinging Bridge on the mighty Presque Isle.
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