Des Plaines Kayaking

From the south suburbs to the northwest suburbs, the Des Plaines River provides some excellent fishing opportunities.

Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Sparty10 » Jan Tue 28, 2020 2:52 pm

Hi, I live in Downtown Des Plaines and was wondering where does everyone put there kayaks in at, also do you guys go upstream first and fish back down? cause I would awesome you would need a pickup downstream or paddle all the way back,never been on the river but would like to catch some PIKE.

Thanks Rich
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby polishfly » Jan Tue 28, 2020 2:56 pm

The river is accessible nearly everywhere along its banks. Check out an app called Go Paddling (for Android at least) which shows you all types of launches. Familiarize yourself with the many water level/flow gauges and get out there! I started on my kayaking on the DPR and fell in love instantly. I would recommend trying to paddle up stream first so you know for sure you will make it back to your car. A one way shuttle is always better in my opinion but it takes a lot more planning and coordination. Have fun out there!
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Grain » Jan Tue 28, 2020 3:05 pm

It is safer to paddle upstream first - that way if you hit an obstruction or a spot where the current is too much you can turn a around you don't get stuck downriver with no way to get back to your car.
Cook County Forest Preserve site has a list of official landings. You'll discover some unofficial ones as you paddle around.
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Rambler » Jan Tue 28, 2020 3:50 pm

While bank fishing the DPR I've run into a yakker a couple times. He always stops for a chat - nice guy. His solution to one-way paddles is Uber. He puts in, does his paddle & then uses Uber to get back to his car. Locks up his yak at the take out.

Never the less, I agree that paddling upstream 1st is best.
Keep calm and fish on...

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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby joetrain » Jan Tue 28, 2020 4:21 pm

I usually fished solo from my canoe/yak and it was easier for me to face into the current and fish. My anchor was always at hand and I could drop it and cleat it in about 2-3 seconds. My 2 main reason for doing it this way was I could stay in position better and I didn’t have to paddle to get back to my take out spot.

I never liked stashing my gear and going back to get it. Too much at stake to lose.

Find a partner and plan a shuttle. You could even have someone drop you off and pick you up downstream. Go the Skifish route and chain up a bike at your take out then ride it back to your put in but that would involve stashing your gear.

Search this site for info. There is a ton of DPR posts to peruse.

I’ll end with this. Check out where 294 goes over the river in Park Ridge.
~JOE~
ad maioram Dei gloriam
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby RonG » Jan Tue 28, 2020 11:14 pm

joetrain wrote:I never liked stashing my gear and going back to get it. Too much at stake to lose.


My gear/electronics exceeds the price of my kayak. (not that the yak was a cheapo either).
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Sparty10 » Jan Wed 29, 2020 6:02 am

Thanks for all the help.
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Rambler » Jan Wed 29, 2020 7:50 am

RonG wrote:My gear/electronics exceeds the price of my kayak. (not that the yak was a cheapo either).

Reminds me - a couple years ago I suggested to Chicityyakker that he portage up past the dam north of Tower Rd at Skokie Lagoons to fish the west channel up there. He said portaging wasn't possible since his yak weighed around 500 lbs.

I knew there was a reason I go minimalist. :D
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby threeats407 » Jan Wed 29, 2020 10:53 am

Another way in that may not be on some of the usual sites is via Big Bend. Put it at Big Bend and you'll see a grooved cement spillway into the river. From there you can south a good long ways or north to just shy of dam #2. I think someone said the log jam has been taken out just south of dam #2.
Making a point to not let fish interrupt my fishing.
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Grain » Jan Wed 29, 2020 1:33 pm

Rambler wrote:his yak weighed around 500 lbs.

I remember that exchange. My kayak is under 50 with gear in it. But of course no salmon fishing for me.
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Re: Des Plaines Kayaking

Postby Rambler » Jan Wed 29, 2020 6:26 pm

Grain wrote:I remember that exchange.

Glad to see this. I thought maybe I made it up. :lol:
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