42 votes
Accepted

Figuring out from a map which direction is downstream for a river?

USGS has a web map called Streamer that will let you trace a stream or river in the US. If you click on a point on a river, it will highlight every part of the river that's downstream of that point. ...
csk's user avatar
  • 4,364
36 votes
Accepted

Is it significantly faster to hike along a river bank?

It depends and is hard to generalize about. If river volume is seasonal (think late summer in temperate countries, especially with snow-capped mountains or places with a specific rainy season), you ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
31 votes

Can horses ford deeper/faster rivers than humans?

Actually, it is often the opposite--many fords which are fine for humans are unsafe for a horse and rider, because the ground is too rocky, or the area is too narrow or steep, or the ford relies on ...
user3067860's user avatar
  • 1,287
29 votes
Accepted

In the US is it legal to travel on any river/creek my canoe will navigate?

All waters no, some places like National Parks require permits, see Dinosaur Monument and Canyonlands. It also differs state by state, in some states the water belongs to the public but not the stream ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
27 votes

How can I find the safest place to cross a frozen river from a map?

The only factor that is going to be important is the speed of the river. Faster parts of a river stay liquid longer, and are going to give you a thinner surface. A surface broken by rocks helps very ...
DJClayworth's user avatar
  • 1,801
23 votes

In the US is it legal to travel on any river/creek my canoe will navigate?

Don't violate Zebra Mussel restrictions!!! There are lots of lakes in Minnesota, and many of them are connected by streams. Its is great to paddle between them in a canoe, you can go tens of miles ...
kingledion's user avatar
19 votes

Is it significantly faster to hike along a river bank?

On rare occasions it can be easiest to walk in the river. I had this happen to me on a trek in the Rocky Mountains up near Banff / Lake Louise. The valley next to the river was old-growth forest mixed ...
fgysin's user avatar
  • 13k
18 votes

Can horses ford deeper/faster rivers than humans?

Horses are bigger and stronger and than humans and because of the square cube law, they have more mass to surface area which makes them better suited to fording deeper/faster rivers. As to whether or ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
17 votes
Accepted

Why do some people stand inside the river fishing?

Fishing in a river while wearing waders permits me to fish down stream and positioning my lures in the spot that is only possible while being in the water. This also helps me to avoid the many snags ...
Ken Graham's user avatar
  • 9,609
17 votes

What are the risks of stream crossing with bare feet?

I think there would be many times when crossing barefoot would be fine. However, a number of potential risks do exist. Those can include: Getting scraped or cut on either the bottoms or sides of ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
16 votes

Can I sail a raft on a European river with commercial traffic?

The good news Navigating the Danube with a raft is certainly possible, and has been done: for instance, Flossbusters are a group of Dresdners who went all the way from Bertoldsheim to the Black Sea ...
Pont's user avatar
  • 3,752
15 votes

In the US is it legal to travel on any river/creek my canoe will navigate?

No. Water use, like everything else in the US, is a patchwork of Federal, State, and Local regulations plus quasi-legal muscle. Multiple overlapping laws and agencies can apply at each level. Here's ...
Schwern's user avatar
  • 431
14 votes
Accepted

How to cross rivers or streams at night or in darkness?

Don't, unless you know the route very well and are sure the rivers can pose no danger. Travel the day before so you arrive to the trailhead before it gets dark, then spend the night at the trailhead. ...
gerrit's user avatar
  • 27.2k
14 votes

Can you notice a waterfall in time to get off the river?

It's always risky to be on a river that you have no information about. Apart from waterfalls there could be other dangers such as rapids, rocks under the surface, whirlpools/undercurrents, artificial ...
fgysin's user avatar
  • 13k
13 votes

How can I find the safest place to cross a frozen river from a map?

There is no general rule in winter, it simply depends too much on conditions. Most rivers have a lot less flow in winter, as precipitation falling as snow will not run off into the river. Rocks in a ...
Manziel's user avatar
  • 7,245
12 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

I guess the answer really is It depends As a general purpose solution I normally bring sturdy trekking/hiking sandals on my trips. Something like the models from Teva for example (many pictures on ...
fgysin's user avatar
  • 13k
12 votes

How can I take my dog kayaking?

We're planning to take our dog kayaking in the not so distant future. We both have two Sit on Top Kayaks which easily leave him room to sit between my feet. If you can fit him in your cockpit in a sit ...
Aravona's user avatar
  • 15.4k
12 votes

Figuring out from a map which direction is downstream for a river?

In addition mostly to @csk's answer, there are maps that give the direction of rivers, e.g. OpenTopomap For most parts of the world, this information is redundant at the first glance since you can ...
cbeleites unhappy with SX's user avatar
12 votes

How can I find the safest place to cross a frozen river from a map?

safer to cross Hope for the best, plan for the worst: think ahead what you will do if the ice breaks. In this case you can cross at the "Kahlaamo" (ford, crossing place) near the bottom of ...
jpa's user avatar
  • 836
11 votes

Can I use a blue plastic tarp to float my vehicle across water?

The whole thing comes down to weight, if your setup can displace more than its weight then it will float, those jeeps were made to be very light. You could be in the situation where your "wrapped car" ...
Erik vanDoren's user avatar
11 votes

Can I expect a mountain stream to have less water in the morning, even when it is not primarily fed by meltwater?

I think the best answer to this question is going to be It Depends Even if it's not glacier fed, the melting snow of ice could have an impact and increase the water flow during the afternoon. The ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

Can you notice a waterfall in time to get off the river?

No. Not reliably. But you only need to be wrong once. Depending on how abrupt the drop is, you may only see a horizon line, with no white caps from rapids below. If there is enough wind to put ...
Sherwood Botsford's user avatar
11 votes

How can I find the safest place to cross a frozen river from a map?

In a meander the fastest flow and the deepest water are on the outside of a bend. The outside of a bend is therefore where you're most likely to have trouble with both thin ice and deep water. If you ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 26.4k
10 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

Any kayaking shop will have a selection of both shoes and boots designed for this. While you can get them with thin soles, I recommend thicker soles if you're mainly wearing them on rocky river beds ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 26.4k
10 votes

What is the best type of shoe to wear for crossing deep rivers?

I've owned pairs of both Keen and Ecco sandals, and have been quite happy with both. They each have solid leather construction with comfortable padding on the inside, and they tend to hold up well. ...
Jeff W's user avatar
  • 1,813
10 votes
Accepted

What is an ice circle, and how does it form?

Ice Disk That phenomenon is called an ice disc or ice circle. It occurs in slow moving water in cold climates. Ice discs form on the outer bends in a river where the accelerating water creates a ...
OddDeer's user avatar
  • 23.4k
10 votes
Accepted

How do you protect yourself against crocodiles when you have no option but to camp on the banks of a croc-infested river?

If I were in such a situation, and not alone, my best bet would be rotating shifts of sentry. When its about camping, the whole problem escalates when everyone is asleep, or more evidently when ...
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
10 votes

Figuring out from a map which direction is downstream for a river?

The answer is often to not use Google maps, and this is no exception. If you want an online source, Openstreetmap.org can help - the cycling layer shows contours so you can use the methods in another ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 26.4k

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