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Big Moon, Big River, Big Canoe

Saturday, November 12, 2016, 2:30pm to 10pm

9 miles on the Mississippi from St. Francis River to Helena Harbor

This surreal election season might leave you needing some time to get away from it all and reconnect to the higher order of things, to the basic elements and patterns that govern the universe: namely the grace, beauty and dignity of the natural world. A great way to do that might be an evening paddle with like-minded people into the sunset, a bonfire, and a celebration of the rising Super Moon, the biggest and brightest moon for decades!

There are still a few open seats in the big canoe if you wish to join us. First come first served. Please write for more information. You can of course witness this phenomena from land, but it is many times brighter and more magical when viewed over the face of the biggest river in North America!


The moon will be at perigee on full moon night, bringing it 50,000 miles closer to the earth than it was at apogee in August. It will be the largest and brightest full moon in a 86 year time span (between 1948 and 2034). Meet at Quapaw Canoe Company in Helena, AR. Our put-in for this adventure is at the mouth of the St Francis River. Everyone paddles together in our giant voyageur style canoes. No previous experience necessary, but must wear life jacket and be willing to paddle. Canoe down the muddy Mississippi into the rich undulating colors of sunset as the river swirls between the Helena islands and floodplain forests sprawling off of Crowley’s Ridge. Make a supper landing on Buck Island. Build a fire, and enjoy the rising of the moon over the Mississippi River while we share a potluck meal. Set off again in the canoe paddling now by the mysterious undulating light of the Full Moon past Doe Island and the mouth of the Trotter’s Runout. Continue on past the Back Channel of Buck Island, and then down along the Helena River Park and into the Helena Harbor at the foot of Crowley’s Ridge. During the full moon the Mississippi River sandbars are as bright as snowfields and the river glistens like shiny steel.


Date: Saturday, November 12, 2016

Meet Place: Quapaw Canoe Company, 107 Perry St, Helena, AR

Meet Time: 2:00pm, shuttle leaves at 2:30pm

End Time: 10pm (approx)

Quapaw Provides: canoe, paddles, lifejackets and all necessary river gear, first aid kits, VHF Marine Radio, running lights, and all necessary emergency gear. Enamel plates & silverware for potluck supper.

Bring with You: 2 water bottles, something to share for Potluck Supper. Shoes you don’t mind getting wet & muddy. sweater or fleece, long pants (or fleece). Headlamp or Flashlight. Cell Phone in Ziplock.

Sunset: 4:56pm

Moonrise: 4:42pm (99.6% full)

What makes this Moon a Supermoon?

On November 12/13/14, 2016, the moon will be closer to Earth than it’s been since January 26, 1948. It’ll be a full moon and a supermoon. The moon won’t come this close again until November 25, 2034. That makes upcoming full moon the closest, brightest and largest supermoon in a period of 86 years!

Supermoon Description at Earth & Sky:

Please note:

The actual full moon is the 13th or 14th of November (depending on where you live on the earth). But it will be 99% full on the night of the 12th. You can continue to enjoy what you see and learn on the Mississippi River and take it back home with you for Super Moon rise the next two nights (the 13th and 14th)!

Sincerely yours in service of the big moon over the big river.