Chroma in Milwaukee Junction


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  1. #1

    Default Detroit River Float Down?

    Reading today about the upcoming annual Port Huron Float Down made we wonder why this never occurred in Detroit. I concluded that while we had a natural launching point, Belle Isle Beach, there was no natural landing point. But, coming soon, there will be West Riverfront Park with its urban beach. Thoughts?
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    The interesting [and amusing] thing about the Port Huron Float Down is that it is a quasi-outlaw event that is reluctantly accepted by the authorities. Who says you can't get in a floaty and float down the river?

    Even the website cited above is clear to disclaim any organizational participation. The attitude from the site and the Coast Guard is "We discourage it but, since you're going to it anyway here's how to be as safe as possible and how to contact us if you get in trouble." [A model that could bear copying for drug policy.]

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  2. #2


    I recently heard they're discouraging things like this on the Detroit River because of the unusually high currents.

    Doesn't mean it wouldn't work under better conditions though.

  3. #3


    Please AVOID heading/ floating towards the Detroit River (which is actually a strait not a river). As the DR is a strait, the undertow's far faster than a meandering river, and twice as fast now with higher water levels, and more choppier than usual.

    A walk by the river front shows the much higher agitation. Freighters have been asked to slow, and the Canadian side boats asked to stay further away from shores to reduce higher than normal wakes, etc.
    Last edited by Zacha341; August-10-19 at 07:44 AM.

  4. #4


    I don't know how "floaters" with no rudder or paddle can exert enough directional control to arrive at their destination. Current in the Detroit River is less than the St Clair but the wind could have more effect with any westerly component, even blowing people backward against the current. I thought one of the more recent float downs ended with lots of participants in Canada?

  5. #5


    I've done the Port Huron Float Down in the past. It's a lot of fun, but things can go wrong in a hurry. Three years ago was when the strong West winds pushed a ton of people towards the Canadian shoreline. I can't remember how many required assistance, but it was a complete disaster.
    Last edited by Johnnny5; August-09-19 at 06:23 PM.

  6. #6


    It's a family legend in my family that my great-grandfather floated on his back from Belle Isle to Wyandotte. With his lunch and a beer or two in a box on his chest. If I remember correctly there's even an old newspaper clipping about the feat somewhere in the family backfiles.

  7. #7


    John Morillo.....nothing like killing a 12 pack of Molson at 10pm at night in Windsor, then swimming across the Detroit River to the Renaissance to a few Americans then swim back to Windsor avoiding the freighters.

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