Canoe-camping can be fun and safe for all ages. Pictured here is the Sanders family of Miami Florida on a four day and three night guided and outfitted St. Croix River canoe trip. When going it alone, you’ll want to have good basic canoeing and camping skills, be comfortable in class I-II rapids. know the J, pry, draw and cross draw strokes. You’ll want to keep the bow between the rocks therefore avoiding broaching rocks. It is helpful to have knowledge of the river, know the current water levels and being prepared for an unexpected high water release. Come properly prepared for all weather conditions (rain, wind, heat, cold) with the right equipment and clothing. Do you have a good waterproofing system for your clothes, gear and food? A backup plan in case of an emergency? I carry Delorme’s In Reach Sat communicator in case of an emergancy. Do you know the closest routes out? Make it fun for kids by letting them explore, discover nature, learn new skills such as knots, fire building and collecting fire wood. Provide good food, warm shelter and take several preventative steps including staying hydrated and shielding yourself from the sun. Always wear a proper fitting type III life jacket while paddling. Wearing shoes while canoeing, wading, swimming and in camp will help protect your feet. Use caution around the fire and hot water. If you are not experienced  at canoe camping, you may want to consider hiring a guide. For more info on the St. Croix River and guided trips with Dave Conley visit www.canoethewild.com