Algonquin Illinois Paddle Tomorrow
POSTPONED due to low level of physical fitness and high level of water. The Chicagoland rains have the Fox running full bore, and upstream paddle will be a struggle at best and Godforsaken at worst. CASKA considering cancelling Sunday's paddle on DesPlaines, so our little adventure on Saturday is ill advised. Will reschedule.
ADDENDUM: from my CASKA group website for May 15, Saturday: Sgt Morelock of IDNR informs us that due to hazardous high water conditions, the Fox has been closed from the Montgomery Dam north to the Algonquin dam in Kane County.
Here's a very common kayaking story, could be any one of my kayaking buddies. I did not know this man. Sounds ominous.
Emergency Crews Searching St. Joseph River for Missing Kayaker.
South Bend, IN Crews combed the St. Joseph River, north of South Bend, after a kayaker went missing there Wednesday evening. Dennis Houck, 60, of South Bend went kayaking around 3 p.m. Wednesday afternoon after returning home from work, and hasn't been seen since.
Houck's wife said he is an experienced kayaker who is training for an upcoming competition. He normally goes kayaking off from the Riverside boat launch near Darden Road and goes north towards Niles before turning around. An off-duty St. Joseph County police officer reported seeing a kayaker heading southbound on the river just north of Auten Road around 4:30 p.m., which is consistent with his normal routine.
Around 8:10 p.m., rescuers were notified that Houck was missing and launched two boats from South Bend and Clay Township about 20 minutes later. Houck's vehicle was found near the Darden boat launch. A capsized kayak was located in the 51200 block of Lilac Rd around 9:15 p.m. Houck's son confirmed to rescue crews that the boat belonged to his father. Clay Fire told NewsCenter 16 a life vest was located inside the kayak. Family says Houck sometimes wears a life vest, and sometimes he does not.
Once the kayak was located, Niles Fire joined the search by launching two additional search boats. Rescue crews called off the search around 11:30 p.m. because of the darkness and conditions on the river. They plan to resume searching Thursday morning around 7 a.m., but could delay the search if weather conditions make the river unsafe for boats. St. Joseph County Police were unsure if river conditions at the time were unsafe for a kayaker. Houck is described as a white male 6'5'' weighing 175 pounds. He was last seen wearing a gray shirt and blue jeans.