Big Bear Adventures: Winter Rafting on the Sturgeon River

With temperatures lowering each day, it is clear winter is here in Northern Michigan. This however, is not stopping one iconic summer destination from drawing people in with their winter rafting excursions.

David Paquette, who has been coming to Big Bear for years, is quite surprised how different his experience is in winter compared to summer. “It’s a relaxed but enjoyably intense experience. Sometimes it’s at times there’s a log coming up but you always get around it and so it doesn’t really matter because you don’t need to freak out. It’s still super cool it’s still the excitement factor.”

On this raft, people become friends quickly. Working as a team to get from point A to point B and managing not to fall in!

Owner of Big Bear Adventures Scott Anderson says, “I can’t make it down this river by myself. I need people to participate and give me some power when they’re paddling the raft!”

The Sturgeon River has a gradient drop of fourteen feet per mile which is the highest gradient drop in the lower peninsula. So although this is not white water rafting like you would see out west, there is still moving water creating plenty of obstacles.

“with the very narrow stream with trees, branches, logs and sticks, it really ends up creating a narrow passage with tight turns and tight corners so it does take a full team to be able to maneuver and get through the passages here on the sturgeon river,” says Anderson.

Northern Michigan photographer Mary Paquette says that this rafting trip never gets old. “To me this is just exhilarating that’s like the best word I can think of because I love the winter and how peaceful it is out here.”

To book your adventure, click here.



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