Trip Leader: Ray Ziemer
Co-Leader: Paul Clifford
Another beautiful day on the West Branch of the DuPage brought 18 paddlers to the put-in at Mack Road. Water levels had been dropping, but seemed fine for this stretch. Taking out above the footbridge on the former Cenacle property, most of the group grabbed their lunches and made the short hike, over Spring Brook and up the trail to the Urban Streams Research Center of Blackwell Forest Preserve. Ecologist Jessi DeMartini met us there and invited us into the office to have our lunches while enjoying her slide presentation about the restoration work being done on the river. Afterwards Jessi invited us into the research laboratory to proudly show off the baby mussels she has successfully propagated. The final stage of the work will be reintroducing them to the river and thereby improving water quality and the ecological health of the stream.
After lunch the group rejoined those who were enjoying the fast water at Warrenville Grove, where the dam was removed some years back. We found our way through the broadened channels at Warrenville Road, too, noting that the landscaping continues, but the riverscaping could use some more work. All too quickly we had arrived at McDowell Grove, where we ended the beautiful day. Thanks to car shifters Scott Seifrid, John Ziegler and Larry Jacklin. Special thanks to Jessi of the Forest Preserve for taking Saturday time for our group.
Put in directions: From I-88 – Exit I-88 at Winfield Road. Turn right and drive north approx. 3 ¼ miles to Mack Road. Turn left and drive 1 ¼ miles west to the Canoe Launch and Dog Park, parking lot entrance on left. From Route 59 – Mack Road is between Batavia Road and Roosevelt Rd. (IL Rte 38) between West Chicago and Warrenville. Turn east on Mack a half mile to cross the river and enter parking lot on south side of road.
Directions to Takeout: Mack Rd. east to Winfield Rd., south to Ferry Rd. and left (south) on Raymond Dr. past Diehl Rd to McDowell Grove Forest Preserve on left.
Special Contacts/Arrangements: Jessi DeMartini can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Water level (gauge/reading): Warrenville Gauge read 125 cfs @ 7.70 feet (Note: Gauge has been relocated to Warrenville Rd. Readings may not correlate with previous reports).