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View Poll Results: Have you ever kayak/canoe'd in the Chicago River?
Yes, and I'd do it again 8 20.51%
Yes, and I don't think I'll be doing it again 1 2.56%
No, but I'd be interested 21 53.85%
No, that's disgusting 9 23.08%
Voters: 39. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-14-2016, 12:22 PM
 
Location: In the heights
29,113 posts, read 28,174,296 times
Reputation: 15608

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The Chicago River has seen a remarkable amount of cleanup in the last couple of decades and the city in just the last couple years has opened up new waste water treatment facilities. Earlier this year, the O'Brian Water Treatment Plant in Skokie opened with new facilities (and ironically named after the only person on the board who voted against upgraded treatment standards) while the year before that the Calumet waste water treatment plant was also significantly upgraded.

So I'm curious now as to whether the regulars of this board have tried doing anything atop the river such as kayaking or canoeing, and if not, whether they'd be open to it as the water quality continues to improve. Details about your experiences, and when you did so, are also appreciated.
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Old 06-14-2016, 12:35 PM
 
Location: Sweet Home Chicago!
5,941 posts, read 4,602,018 times
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Not a kayaker, but I see many kayaks in the Chicago River.
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Old 06-14-2016, 04:02 PM
 
Location: Cleveland, OH USA / formerly Chicago for 20 years
3,913 posts, read 6,298,381 times
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I used to see all those people kayaking down the river and would think to myself that was something I'd really like to try. Regretfully, I never got around to it before leaving town last year.

Does one need to take kayaking lessons if one is already competent at handling, say, a canoe? Or is it something one can just adapt to? Just wondering.
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Old 06-14-2016, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Chicago, Little Village
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I have kayaked on the river. Great workout and cool way to see the City. Just watch out for big boats! The water in the east/west portion between the Lake and the branches is much clearer and cleaner than elsewhere.

Kayaks are supposedly easier to use than canoes. I've never canoed so I couldn't tell you. But I would take a lesson before heading out there. There's a lot of boat traffic so you need to make sure you know how to steer and stop.
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Old 06-14-2016, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Chicago
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I want to try it out this year.
Can anyone just drop in and go? Or is there some sort of permit or something needed?
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Old 06-15-2016, 06:15 AM
 
Location: Chicago
2,884 posts, read 4,365,645 times
Reputation: 2762
Quote:
Originally Posted by andrew61 View Post
I used to see all those people kayaking down the river and would think to myself that was something I'd really like to try. Regretfully, I never got around to it before leaving town last year.

Does one need to take kayaking lessons if one is already competent at handling, say, a canoe? Or is it something one can just adapt to? Just wondering.
My 78 yr old mother goes kayaking with my 53 year old brother, it's not difficult. of course they don't do that thing where they roll the kayak under water and back up. They haven't done the Chicago river, but they did the DuPage under some rather gnarly conditions - very high, fast running water.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Chicago
938 posts, read 804,302 times
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Got river water splashed in my face back in September.

The doctor's say removing the Coke bottle from my belly button would only worsen the radiation.

Last edited by ARaider08; 06-15-2016 at 09:35 AM..
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Chicago, Little Village
4,504 posts, read 7,968,996 times
Reputation: 3426
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alacran View Post
I want to try it out this year.
Can anyone just drop in and go? Or is there some sort of permit or something needed?
Nope, no license required. Just drop in and go. But again, as I said, I wouldn't recommend that if you've never piloted a kayak.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Wicker Park/East Village area
2,471 posts, read 3,680,833 times
Reputation: 1921
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alacran View Post
I want to try it out this year.
Can anyone just drop in and go? Or is there some sort of permit or something needed?
There's a place just south of North Ave and a block east of Elston where they rent kayaks for the river and I think go out in groups...

Home
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Old 06-15-2016, 02:36 PM
 
Location: North Jackson
2,195 posts, read 3,564,888 times
Reputation: 3064
Kayaked on lake superior, but never on the river. Would be interested to kayak on the river, but mainly would want to go through the locks and out onto the lake. Staying on the north and south branches of the river seems a little dull, not much look at.
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