Neenah Creek

This is a good paddling creek.  As a general rule the further upstream you go on this creek, the more interesting it becomes.

Trip Reports

W Chauncey St Bridge to Hwy A Bridge


Date Paddled: April 6th, 2014
Distance: 6.2 Miles
Time: 4 hours (slowed by pictures and cutting limbs)

Neenah creek is an occasionally paddled creek that is normally known for its open grassy areas, wetlands, waterfowl, and for being the first major tributary of the historic Fox River.  A far more obscure segment of the stream, rarely paddled, is the far upper section, which I learned about from Small River Canoe Adventures of […]

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Hwy A Bridge to Hwy P Bridge


Date Paddled: October 26th, 2014
Distance: 4.0 Miles
Time: 2 hours 22 minutes

A solid but not super exotic wetland paddle with its strength being the clean water and sandy bottom. Put-in: Pretty good access at Hwy A.  You can put in north of the bridge (either up or downstream).  There are riffles running under the bridge, so putting in upstream lets you run them.  Try not to […]

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Hwy P to Grouse Drive


Date Paddled: December 3rd, 2017
Distance: 6.7 miles
Time: 2 hours 41 minutes

A return to Neenah Creek to check out its middle portion.  This is an open wetgrass paddle that isn't overly exciting, but does have some subtle beauty.

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Grouse Drive to Muskrat Road


Date Paddled: February 19th, 2017
Distance: 3.2 miles
Time: 1 hour 24 minutes

A return to Neenah Creek for an easy wetgrass paddle with few challenges, but few rewards.

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Muskrat Road to Hwy CX


Date Paddled: November 13th, 2016
Distance: 5.2 Miles
Time: 2 hours 9 minutes

This simple wetgrass paddle is not overly interesting with a broad slow channel and repetitive flat scenery.  However, it is fantastic for waterfowl.

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Overview Map

Detailed Overview

Main Branch:

  • Upstream of Peppermill Creek:  I suspect the creek is too congested to run
  • 1st Lane (Peppermill Creek) to 1st Court:  1.1 miles. First half is a nice clear open stream but there is congestion after that.  
  • 1st Court to Seeley Lake Access:  2.8 miles.  Amazing clarity, nice riffles and steep hills…but serious logjams issues.  Been on my to-do list for a while…
  • Seeley Lake Access to West Chauncey Street:  0.6 miles.  Mostly pleasant lake paddling with a dam to portage.
  • West Chauncey Street to Hwy A:  6.8 miles.  My favorite section with terrific clarity, a few fun rapids, and clean substrate...but rumor has it new logjams might be an issue.  Reviewed Apr 2014.
  • Hwy A to Hwy P:  4.1 miles.  My second favorite section.  Very nice wetgrass paddle with great clarity and no logjams...best saved for a sunny day.  Reviewed Oct 2014.
  • Hwy P to Grouse Drive:  6.4 miles.  Reviewed Dec 2017.
    • Hwy P to Hwy 23:  3.9 miles.  A pleasant stretch that starts nice with clear, sandy seeps but becomes less interesting when it flows though the marsh.
    • Hwy 23 to Grouse Drive:  2.5 miles.  A mediocre stretch...less marshy than before, but still very open.
  • Grouse Drive to Muskrat Road:  3.1 miles.  Creek slows down and widens significantly.  Reviewed Feb 2017.
  • Muskrat Road to Hwy CX:  4.6 miles.  A big open wetgrass paddle...at times pleasant with good water fowl, this is likely my least favorite section.  Reviewed Nov 2016.
  • Hwy CX to Dixon Road:  3.1 miles.  Mostly open but with some possible jams.
  • Dixon Road to Hwy CM (on the Fox):  1.2 miles.  Final stretch with take-out on the Fox River.

Tributaries:

  • Big Spring Creek:  A small, but neat creek with incredible transparency.  Reviewed Apr 2016.
  • Neenah Creek – South Branch:  A slow, simple but pleasant marsh paddle. Reviewed Oct 2014.
  • Big Slough Creek:  A very slow, broad creek with a lot of history.  Reviewed May 2014.
  • O’Keefe Creek:  Too small to run above Mud Lake, but it is navigable downstream of the lake.  Reviewed by Richard Kark.

Nearby Guages

Videos

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Comments

Jun 15th, 2021 - Aaron from Dell Creek
Thanks for the update. I wonder if this leg is best done in early spring or late fall when some of these snags won't be so overgrown and difficult to get past.
Jun 15th, 2021 - Jon from Starkweather
Paddled from W. Chauncey to Hwy A on June 13, 2021. Level was lower than August 16, 2020. The portage around several downed large trees (1/2 mile upstream from Fox Rd.) ended in warm mud rather than ankle-deep water. Link to portage photo from 2020: https://photos.app.goo.gl/nBGmjvQQB8w5arwZ7 We had to exit our boats more often due to getting hung up in shallow water. I think there are more obstacles than in 2020, mostly between Chauncey and Fox Rd. Lots of pull-overs, duck-unders, ram overs, etc. to test one's problem-solving and boat handling skills. Wildlife was outstanding, as usual. Orioles, wood ducks, mergansers, sandpipers and killdeer, damselflies and dragonflies, plus lots of small fish. We suprised deer in the creek at least 3 times, and saw a beaver den along one bank, complete with a food cache of several branches. It took us almost 4 hours to paddle 6.2 miles, but we took two breaks for refreshments. With some clearing, this stretch could appeal to more paddlers, rather than just those willing to deal with lots of obstacles.
Aug 17th, 2020 - Jon from Starkweather
Eric's comments from Aug. 11 are spot-on. Casual paddlers would find the obstacles and maneuvering annoying, but we enjoyed the problem solving. (we had two canoes, one kayak.)
Aug 11th, 2020 - Aaron from Dell Creek
That's a major update...as I wrote off that section as having too many logjams. Four portages for that trip is definitely worth it IMO. Thanks as always for the intel.
Aug 11th, 2020 - Eric Guderyon from Wingra Creek
I did this section on 8/11/21 (10 Mile Creek gauge was at 62 CFS and 4.82 Ft) so the level may have been lower than on your trip, but the levels seemed fine. All the rapids were runnable and there seemed to be plenty of water the whole way. The water clarity and wildlife (deer, snapping turtles, heron, geese, ducks, beaver muskrat were amazing, especially the fish. I have never seem the number or variety of fish in any stream in Wisconsin. We saw numerous large trout and countless other fish. we had to get out of the boats 4 times, 2 for portages that required going up on shore and 2 that just required getting out of the boats to pull/lift over obstacles. There were several other places that required ducking under or sliding over/through stuff but nothing was too difficult or dangerous, as the creek was usually not deep nor was the current too strong. While this trip is far from a 'Lazyy River' paddle, for those who are looking for a stunningly clear river, with very little development, an abundance of wildlife, plus a nice swimming hole at the takeout, and are willing to put up with a few easy obstacles, I would highly recommend this trip
Jul 3rd, 2019 - Aaron from Dell Creek
Yeah there was a tornado that blew through that area after my trip and that kind of messed things up. Nice to hear you still had a nice trip though. Would be great if some locals adopted this creek and worked on its upkeep.
Jul 3rd, 2019 - Eric Guderyon from Wingra creek
I did this section on 7/3/19. There were a lot of obstacles, I stopped/lost count around 12... a lot of ducking under, scooting over, pulling through, and few easy portage... but it is still a trip I will do again and that I would recommend for those who are up for an adventure and are willing to do a bit of work. the water clarity and wildlife is great for the entire trip, I saw fish, snapping turtles, deer, hawks, cranes, heron, ducks and more. The trip has a variety of landscapes and even the flat marsh like section at the end was enjoyable due to the amazing water clarity, the decent currant and amazing wildlife. it seemed there was a deer,goose, duck or heron around every bend. Another highlight was a great swimming hole at the take out. A nice big deep hole after the little rapids at the bridge. For anyone willing to work for it, it is a great trip on a hot summer day.
Jun 27th, 2018 - Aaron from Dell Creek
I feel bad that you had such a trying time. It was a very different situation when I did the paddle. I have posted an updated message in the main review which hopefully should help other paddlers.
Jun 27th, 2018 - Jacqueline Barbeaux from fox river
The creek is beautiful! Seen so much wildlife! But unfortunately the log jams were so numerous that the trip became stressful. I think the 1st 4 hours were were out of the kayaks as much as we were in them. There were many trees that were across the river that we just squeaked by either under or around. some log jams were huge. I gotta give my dogs credit they were troopers. ( a 10 lb rat terrier and 40 lb mutt!) Lost my cell phone! the last big log jam had a deep ( > 5') kinda whirlpool. I went sideways and a branch hit my dog , me and the dog fell in! it was hell! still sore and feeling stupid! Lesson: never go on an unexplored part of a river with 2 dogs! I was scared more for my dogs than anything. seen lots of deer which made my dog Sam happy :)
Jun 25th, 2018 - Aaron from Dell Creek
Thank you for the comments. I believe a tornoda do blow through this area and create a big mess, which is unfortunate.
Jun 25th, 2018 - Jaqueline Barbeaux from Fox River
We dropped in at W Chauncey St Bridge qnd took out on Hwy A. There were 2 of us and 2 dogs. We made it but the trip took 5 hours, the river has about 7 log jams between Chauncey street and Fox Rd. , another 3 from Fox to Hwy A. How we made it I don't know.Do not do this section!
Jul 13th, 2017 - Jim from Brooks
Heading out tomorrow. Thanks!
Jul 12th, 2017 - admin
Thanks Jim for the comment and the question. When I scouted Fox Road bridge it looked like a great take-out option. There are rapids under the bridge, but you can disembark before them if you wish.
Jul 12th, 2017 - Jim Sako from Mcginnis Lake
Mcginnis lake is the start of Neenah Creek. This beautiful 28 acre lake provides over 600 gallons of water per minute to the creek. Anyway being new to kayaking we've only paddled around our lake and now are looking to get a little more adventurous. (we just purchased your book) Looking to do the lower creek dropping in a Chauncey St. but are afraid the trip to County "A" will be too much for us. Do you recall if it is possible to pull out at the Fox Rd. overpass? This point appears to be lees than 1/2 of your trip. Thank you for the wonderful and informative information of your trips. we hope to utilize your experiences and knowledge of these local areas. -- Edit and Update: We dropped in at Chauncy Street and everything was going wonderful until we ran into a large amount of downed trees that had fallen from last week's unconfirmed tornado. The creek became inpassible after about a quarter mile. On to the next adventure. We're going to drop in Goose Lake and paddle around there for a while.
Apr 21st, 2015 - admin
It wasn't me, but ironically I was in the area Sunday and did paddle Duck Creek on Saturday which is not too far from Neenah Creek.
Apr 21st, 2015 - Mark Derheimer from Neenah Creek
Ironic that I encountered a kayaker coming downstream while trout fishing the upper section of the Neenah yesterday and today I stumble upon your website. Since we never see anyone fishing this section, let alone trying to navigate it in a kayak, I had to wonder if it was you. Just curious, Mark

How did your trip turn out? Questions or comments? Feel free to leave your feedback.

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