Paddling our Rivers in Manistee County

Looking to find that perfect river to float?  Well you are in luck, we have many fantastic paddling or floating rivers.  The Little Manistee River, Big Manistee River, Pine River are great paddling rivers for all experience levels.  If you are looking for a lazy day float, try the lower half of Bear Creek in the late summer/early fall for great fall color!   Browse any of these great rivers below!

Your River Adventures. #MyManistee

Explore the Rivers in the Manistee County Area

With 250+ river miles to explore… there is no shortage of paddling and fishing opportunities on the rivers of Manistee. Here you will find a complete list of rivers in our region and recommended routes, trips and float times.

River Tips and Recommendations


 

Best River for Families:  Big Manistee River – This top Michigan river is ideal for families traveling to the region, as it is wide and there are plenty of rental liveries servicing the various segments.

 


 

Best River for Experienced Paddlers: Pine River – This river contains some of the only white water in the Lower Peninsula.  This river is frequented by expert paddlers throughout the season, however, the early spring thaw attracts many from around the Midwest as this is the time of year when the river is at its swiftest current.

 


 

Best River for a Tube/Float: Little Manistee River – This great river, is shallow and is great for those looking for a quick 2-3 hour afternoon float.

 

EXPLORE OUR WATERWAYS

Download a complete guide to all of the rivers in Manistee County. Included you will find float times/charts and GPS locations for each access site.
Download a Map of all the Manistee County Rivers

Watercraft Rentals

No Watercraft? No Problem… search our great rental liveries and companies serving the waterways around Manistee County.

Found 6 listings

Follow the travelers that love Manistee County, enjoy these stories about our incredible outdoor recreation, things-to-do, dining, shopping and unique experiences you will ONLY find here.

Browse our latest #MyManistee perspectives here, or scroll through these top stories in your category.

Check out all of our latest stories on our #MyManistee Blog.

Water and Lake Life in Manistee County

There’s fresh water, water, everywhere and even some to drink in Manistee County’s North Coast Region (with a wink and apologies to Samuel Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”). We invite you to immerse yourself in the laid-back lake life in our...

Hiking the Loop: Manistee River Trail & North Country Trail Loop

Nestled in the Manistee National Forest you will find hundreds of miles of marked trails for those who love to hike, bike, or in the winter, cross country ski and snowshoe. Which trail should you choose for your weekend adventure? We suggest the North...

A day with you on M-22 in Manistee County

Leave it all behind and begin to discover Manistee County – a place that will take you back in time. No neon. No billboards. No stop and go lights. It’s morning on M-22 and the sun begins to peek through the sky as it rises in the east, just tinting the...

3 Harbors of Manistee County

In fair weather in spring, summer and fall, water lovers on kayaks, canoes, paddleboards and PWCs share the Lake Michigan shoreline, harbors and rivers with power boats and sailboats. When the weather gets rough, surfers and kiteboarders navigate swirling...

Riding the Big Bear Butt Cruise

Multi-kilometer bicycle cruises, northern Lower Michigan scenery, campfires and camaraderie. It seemed like a success story just waiting to be written for Manistee County native Bob Schuelke. He turned a love of cycling and the community he grew up in into...

Top 5 Unique Fall Finds for 2020

There are more ways to experience fall color than just by car or bike. Here is your TOP 5 #MyManistee "Unique Ways to Explore Fall" this fall color season in Northern Michigan.   1) Scenic Airplane Tour Take a Scenic Airplane Ride with Orchard Beach Aviation....

A Passenger Ship Through the Past – Touring the S.S. City of Milwaukee

Written by: Andrew Allen Growing up in Manistee County somehow the S.S. City of Milwaukee always seemed to hide right in plain sight. I’d drive past the massive (347 foot passenger/railroad car) ferry without really giving it much thought. Finally, sometime in high...

Grebe Park

Arcadia Lake is a 100-acre, natural beauty gem and Grebe Park, both family- and pet-friendly, offers access to all. Through the park’s association with Manistee County’s Explore the Shores Program, construction of a special fishing platform and launch site...

The Twisted Trails of Manistee County

If spending weekends on ATVs climbing vertical rock walls, barreling through boulder gardens and mud bogs, joining in beat downs, truck pulls, dog parties and winter snow wheeling is your kind of fun, Twisted Trails Off Road Park is the place for you. “We...

Outdoor Adventure in Manistee’s North Woods

If you’re an adventurous explorer, you’ve come to the right place. Our North Woods are in the heart of four-season natural beauty with thrill-a-minute activities. A passionate group of entrepreneurs have developed their own visions to share, creating...