THE RIVERGATOR is a mile-by-mile paddler’s guide written for canoeists, kayakers, stand-up-paddleboarders, and anyone else plying the waters of the Lower Mississippi River in human-powered craft.
The Middle/Lower Mississippi River creates the longest free-flowing water trail in the continental United States, 1155 miles from St. Louis to the Gulf of Mexico.
The name Rivergator is adopted from the best seller The Navigator first published in 1801 by Zadok Cramer, with the hope that Americans will rediscover their “wilderness within,” the paddler’s paradise created by the Middle Lower Mississippi Rivers.
Four year project. Website under construction. Dec 2014: add on St. Louis to Caruthersville and Vicksburg to Baton Rouge. Dec 2015: website completed with the addition of Baton Rouge to the Gulf and the Atchafalaya.
Useful for daytrippers and long distance paddlers alike. Choose your section of the Lower Mississippi River to explore by clicking on one of the sections below. Or click on the full color base map and keep clicking through increasing magnification of maps for details.
The below mileage corresponds to the mile system used on the 2007 US Army Corps of Engineer River Maps.
Click on a section or mile marker below to view the index for that section.
Who is the Rivergator written by?
The Rivergator was written by paddlers for paddlers. Primary author, John Ruskey, has been paddling, photographing, and documenting the islands, landings and channels of the Lower Mississippi River since 1982. A host of big river experts reviewed content and added details including legendary river guide Michael Clark (Big Muddy Adventures, St. Louis) author Ernest Herndon (Canoeing Mississippi, Canoeing Louisiana), and biologist Paul Hartfield (endangered species specialist for the US Fish & Wildlife). Project is coordinated by the Lower Mississippi River Foundation. The Rivergator website is made possible by many partners, including the Walton Family Foundation, which believes in “conservationomics”: lasting solutions that make sense for the economy and the environment.
Book: I Am Coyote
Including Rivergator Excerpt! Most know the Mississippi River as the powerful, coffee-colored waterway that cuts through the center of America, or as the stomping grounds for Mark Twain’s indelible characters. But it is also a viable wilderness thriving right under our noses. In pulling together writings from Muir, Thoreau, Roosevelt, Rivergator, and many, many others, I AM COYOTE makes a strong bid for the ultimate river island campfire anthology.