The ultimate source of the fourth longest river in the world is Brower’s Spring, elevation 9,000 feet, on the southwestern edge of Montana along the Idaho border. The expedition will start just over the border in Idaho. We’ll trek to Brower’s Spring, where Hell Roaring Creek flows down into the Centennial Valley. Then we’ll hike along Hell Roaring Creek until there is enough water to use our inflatable raft. We will paddle Hell Roaring Creek to its confluence with Red Rock Creek, and canoe the length of Red Rock River, which flows into Clark Canyon Reservoir. From here we will get onto the Beaverhead River outside of Dillon, Montana, and paddle to it’s connecting point with the Jefferson River just outside of Twin Bridges, Montana.
The Jefferson flows 83 miles to Three Forks, Montana, where it connects with two other rivers, the Gallatin and the Madison, to form the headwaters of the Missouri River. We will canoe the entire length of the Missouri River paddling through Montana, North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, and Missouri. The Missouri River and Mississippi River meet just north of St. Louis, Missouri. At this junction we will switch from a tandem canoe to solo canoes to descend the Mississippi River, paddling along the Missouri and Illinois border, along Kentucky, into Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and ending in Louisiana at the Gulf of Mexico. Total mileage for the fourth longest river is 3,902 miles. Though by the time we arrive at the Gulf of Mexico, we will have paddled well over 4,000 miles by paddling into bays along the river, going to shore for lunch breaks, and practicing our canoe ballet skills just to pass the time.
The exact mileage would be difficult to calculate, if not for current technology! Using a spot tracker device you will be able to follow along with us as we canoe this incredible river system. You will know where we start each morning, how many miles we paddle, and where we camp each night. This is one of the features that will help you experience the expedition alongside us. Regular video, photographic, and written updates from our expedition including our educational curriculum and activities will make you feel like you are on the river with Alyce and Lisa. We can’t wait to have you join our expedition! Paddle +