Content © 2017 Crystal Falls, MI, This City is a WPPI Community.
Paint River - Iron County, 45 miles; 3 days to 1 week.
The Paint River rises in the west part of Iron County and
flows easterly and southeasterly into the Brule River,
finally joining the Michigamme River to form the
Menominee River. Its bottom is gravel, sand and rock.
Some of the feeder streams have trout and there are
some trout in the Upper Paint, but the stream is
generally known for Small Mouth Bass. The terrain is
cutover poplar land, some swamp, plains, hardwoods
and some pine. There are two dangerous rapids, the
Hemlock and the Horserace. The latter is a blinger.
Don't run them unless you are a super canoeist. The
portage at Hemlock is 1/2 mile, Horserace is 1-1/2 miles.
At the power dam take your canoe out 200 feet above
the dam on the east side. For the entire trip, put in at the
Forest Service canoe landing in the Paint River Forks
campground on County Road 657/Gibb City Road at
Gibb City or on the township road 1/4 mile north of Gibb
City. 6-1/4 miles below the Gibb City bridge, the Net
River flows into the Paint. From here down the fishing is
best for Northern Pike and Small Mouth Bass. You
come to the first portage, Hemlock Rapids, 12-1/2 miles
below the Gibb City bridge. You come to your first
takeout spot 3-1/2 miles below the Hemlock Rapids at
County Road 643/Bates-Amasa Road. Many use this as
a starting point to avoid the Hemlock Rapids. You will
find the Chicaugon Slough 4-1/2 miles below the 643
Road bridge. Seven and one-half miles below the 643
Road bridge is a public fishing site. This is where the
bass fisherman put in. Two miles further on is the US-
141 bridge, a good takeout spot. Three and one-half
miles below the US-141 bridge is the Crystal Falls Power
Dam. You'll have to line your canoe down the river for
1/2 mile here or make a portage. You can get a truck to
pick you up at the dam and take you down to the M-69
bridge, 1-1/2 miles below the power plant. Below the M-
69 bridge you enter the backwaters of the Little Bull
Power Dam which extends for a distance of about 9
miles. You may portage on the east shore near the dam
and continue down the Paint River or by putting in at the
diversion canal, you may enter the backwaters of Peavy
Pond on the Michigamme River. One mile below the
Little Bull Rapids there is a takeout on the right side.
One mile below this takeout is the Horserace portage.
One and one-half miles below the rapids there is a
cleared camp site and road access to US-2 and 141.
Four miles below the rapids the Paint River enters the
Brule River. The best place to take out is 3-1/2 miles
below the mouth of the Paint River at the Wisconsin-
Michigan Power Dam in Wisconsin.
Net River - Iron County, 24.5 miles; 2 days. The Net
River starts in the upper central part of Iron County,
close to US-141 and flows southeasterly to where it
enters the Paint River. Logging roads cross the river a
mile below the Wide-waters and just north of Mike's
Creek. Put in at Park Siding Road bridge 3/4 mile west
of US-141. The east branch of the Net River flows 3/4
mile below the bridge. Six miles below there is the
Wide-waters with some of the best Northern Pike fishing
in the region. One mile south is Lake Dam. Six miles
below the railroad bridge you reach Chipmunk Falls.
There is a short portage here. Two and a half miles
below is the Snake River. Large boulders make these
rapids risky. Three miles to the Paint River.
Brule River - Iron County, 47 miles; 2 or 3 days. The
Brule is the border river between Wisconsin and
Michigan, entering the Menominee River near Iron
Mountain. It's not a big river, and there are few rapids.
Put in at M-73 bridge on the Wisconsin-Michigan border.
Watch for shallow rapids. From this bridge to the bridge
on M-189, 11-1/2 miles down stream, is good Rainbow
Trout fishing. Six miles below the M-189 bridge the Iron
River flows into the Brule. The water's color becomes
dull red because of iron ore, it has no effect on fishing.
Another takeout spot is 3/4 mile below the mouth of the
Iron River at Scott Lake. Other takeout spots are 3-3/4
miles below Scott bridge at Pentoga bridge, 3-1/2 miles
further at Rainbow Trail bridge (Rainbow Trail bridge is
only accessible from the Wisconsin side), 3 miles further
at Carney Dam, 6-1/2 miles further at the US-2 141
bridge, 2 miles further at the Conservation Road terminal
or continue 2-1/2 miles to the backwaters. The Paint
River flows into the Brule River at this point. The Brule
River has both Brook and Rainbow Trout.