Our Most Popular Canoe Routes on the Crow Wing River

Whether you plan to be on the river for only a couple of hours or as many as five days, there are many itineraries to consider.  We are happy to help you plan your canoe trip according to river conditions and time available to you. Please call to let us help you plan a memorable canoe trip. 

Gloege's Northern Sun Canoe Outfitting primarily utilizes the 75-mile portion of the Crow Wing River Canoe Trail system served by the MN DNR and Wadena County campgrounds.  We are conveniently located midway on the Canoe Trail, with three days of canoeing above us and three days below. 

To help you get started, here are some of our favorite and most popular canoe routes: 

Our Most Popular Day Trip

Our most popular day trip begins at Mary Brown bridge.  This trip starts out quietly for the first five miles, and then picks up the pace through a few little riffles.  This 8-mile trip which ends at our landing is typically 3-4 hours plus swimming and picnic time.   

Lee's Favorite Trip, Fast and Fun

 Lee's favorite short trip is the mile and a half trip from Gloege's to Nimrod.  This short trip has the biggest drop in inches per mile of the river trail.  It is fast and fun and beautiful and you are almost guaranteed to see a Bald Eagle on this short route.   

A Favorite Two-Day Trip

 A favorite two-day trip begins at Shell City Campground on the Shell River System. After about a four-mile float, it joins the Crow Wing River and winds past Tree Farm Landing and past the village of Huntersville with an overnight stay at either Big Bend or Huntersville State Forest.   On Day Two, the trip continues under Mary Brown Bridge - a wonderful swimming hole - past Anderson's Crossing and ends at our landing - just 1.5 miles north of Nimrod.  

Three-Day or Longer Adventures

 Paddlers looking for a three-day (or longer) adventure often enjoy the slow and easy Shell River from the outlet of Blueberry Lake through the Twin Lakes and on to the Shell City on the Shell .River. (See itinerary for the favorite two-day trip).    

 A three or four-day trip usually starts above us and extends down on the lower part of the Crow Wing. You might begin at the Twin Lakes access with overnight #1 at Tree Farm Landing, overnight #2 at Anderson's Crossing, overnight #3 at Little White Dog with a pick-up at Cottingham Park.  There are many variations and it's your choice. 



Q: How many miles can I expect to canoe in a day? 
A: Most of our customers canoe between 8 and 10 miles each day, some paddle up to 12.  Remember the campgrounds are spaced every three to seven miles and there are limited access points.  Think of it as your opportunity to slow down and observe nature. 

Q: How does this work?
A: Usually you come to our outfitting and after we decide on a route, we will transport you and your gear to a starting point with our vans and canoe trailers.  Your cars are safe in our parking lot. 

Q: What equipment and services do you offer?
A:  We have canoes, kayaks, paddles and life jackets.  If you need camping gear we have that too.  We have a small campground here for our canoeists.

Q: What kind of wildlife might I see?
 A: Turtles, great blue herons, bald eagles, osprey, song birds, fish, porcupines, black bear, otters, deer. The river and river banks have abundant wildlife.  (We've been seeing many black bears this year!)

Q:  How long will I be out on the water? 
A: Trips can be anywhere from a few hours to five or six days.

Q:  Are there towns and stores along the river?
A: On the Wadena County portion of the canoe trail, the largest town on the river is Nimrod, population 69.  Nimrod offers Peterson's  Bar and Grill, which serves up a great hamburger. Huntersville village (not the State campground) also has a bar and grill, as does Wahoo Valley by Cottingham Park.

Q: What should I bring on my canoe trip?
 A:  Sunscreen, insect repellent, sunglasses, water shoes, hat or sun visor, ice, jacket for cool evenings, your food, clothing and personal items.