About Packed to Paddle

Packed: I rely on the lightweight compacted nature of packrafts to hike the shuttles to my mostly solo river trips, which is just one of the perks to packrafting.  

Paddle: Fellow paddlers can access past river trips I've experienced, from calm to rapids to multi-day paddling trips, with most trips on rivers in or around Wisconsin.

Site Purposes

  • Share interesting content experienced
  • Show the different paddling possibilities
  • Past trips for others to try (most around WI)
  • Introduce packrafts & their extra capabilities
  • Provide reflections & suggestions on gear

Personal Paddling Background

My experiences with paddling were mostly limited to taking the canoe out on a lake where our grandparents had a cottage in northern Wisconsin during the Summers growing up.  The Summer of 2017 is where my paddling desires really took off, as I had a graduate internship at Splore, the adapted whitewater rafting company in Moab, Utah on the Colorado River.  There was a lot learned on packing dry bags, rigging & rowing rafts, reading rivers, running rapids, cooking & camping on the river, and more.  Following that Summer, I was back in Wisconsin for good and without a means to paddle more rivers, so I eventually got an inflatable kayak that worked well enough for lake outings but was a hassle to move with if I needed to shuttle by foot or bike for a solo river trip.  This predicament brought me to the attention of packrafts, which are designed for both boating and transporting by foot or bike.  So I was instantly convinced and purchased the Kokopelli Rogue Spraydeck in the Spring of 2020 and preceded to go on over 30 different river trips and 350+ river miles over about a three-month span that Summer, with the following year taking a similar course and future years already planned out.

Why I Created Packed to Paddle

While going on all the packrafting river trips in 2020, I was also documenting the specifics, taking pictures, and writing up about each river trip for another former paddling site, that my brother and I started a few years back.  2021 was more of the same, until I felt I should better highlight and focus on the packrafting aspect to my trips and all the gear making it possible, motivating me to put together this site.  So Packed to Paddle is about bringing attention to all the perks to packrafts, all the gear involved on and off the water, and the paddling experiences I have been able to do as a result.  I hope others get inspired to try some past trips I've gone on themselves, to look into packrafts if they peak your interests, or just to enjoy the content in general on here.