A four day family friendly canoe and kayak trip was held June 2-5th, 2016 on the Looking Glass River. The event, organized by the Middle Grand River Organization of Watersheds, Friends of the Looking Glass River, and Clinton Conservation District, attracted paddlers from across the state. The four-day expedition commenced near US-127 and concluded in Portland, where the Looking Glass River meets the Grand River. Paddlers camped along the Looking Glass in Dewitt and Wacousta.
The expedition is meant to showcase the beauty and tranquility of the Looking Glass River and to raise awareness of environmental and water quality issues in the region. MGROW has helped organize similar expeditions throughout the region since 2010, including a 3 day trip on the Rogue River and a 6 day expedition on the Thornapple River. The Looking Glass River Expedition is a spin-off of MGROW’s much larger and popular 12 day paddle on the Grand River which occurs every ten years.
“One of the many challenges of hosting an expedition is logjams,” said Gloria Miller, president of Friends of the Looking Glass, “we want folks to be able to experience the joys of the Looking Glass without the trouble of having to portage around countless logjams.”
Volunteers have been working since August to identify and manage logjams in environmentally friendly ways. Logjams play an important role in aquatic ecosystems by providing habitat for fish and serve as a food source for a variety of other organisms. Logjams are being managed to allow for recreational passage with minimal impacts to the river channel.