PADDLE THE PLATTE RIVER
Take the family on a few hour trip down one of northern Michigan's most scenic rivers. With clear water and a sandy bottom, the Platte River will definitely not disappoint.
COORDINATES: 44°73'22.2"N, 86°15'48.2"W
LEVEL: Beginner (anyone)
TIME: Medium (2-4 hours)
ACCESSIBILITY: Easy (parking on site, kid friendly).
THINGS TO DO:
Bring your own water vessels or forget the stress of bringing your own gear and rent kayaks or canoes here:
HOW TO GET THERE:
From Traverse City, take M-31 / M-37 south out of town, turn west (right) onto M-31 and continue on M-31 for 18.5 miles. Take a slight right onto Deadstream rd, and in 3.2 miles, the destination is on your right.
WHAT TO BRING: A cooler for drinks, water shoes with straps (flip flops might get lost), sunscreen, and a way to secure items like keys and phones in case you go under (like the M22 waterproof bag).
OPTIONAL SIDE TREK: Just a couple of miles from the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and about 20 minutes from the Sleeping Bear Dunes, there is no shortage of scenery in the immediate area. Want to turn back time a bit? Swing by The Cherry Bowl Drive-in Theatre for a one-of-a-kind northern Michigan experience to finish out your day.
KICK IT UP A NOTCH: Opt for the SUP or try your hand at the Upper Platte River section. While you won't shoot out into Lake Michigan here at the end as you would on the Lower Platte, the Upper Platte offers fast current, low-hanging branches and underwater obstacles geared more towards the experienced paddler. Just don't be afraid to get wet! Alternatively, bring your own kayak, canoe or SUP if you're into saving some cash. Just be sure to arrange a way to get back to your car once you're done with your paddle (we suggest biking!)
TIPS: Just have fun. You really can't go wrong with this trip, even if you tip!