We just bought a used tandem sot and our loving the experience. We inadvertently baptized ourselves by fire on our first run....didn't know what up north watershed would do to the river here...wow!!!
I read (after the fact) it's one of the only places in Illinois with actual whitewater. It's called "Fishnet Rapids" and occurs between Romeoville and Lockport.
Sure we saw egrets, loons, herons, turtles.........but what we also saw was strainers. Luckily God watches out for certain types and we managed to experience the thrill without succumbing to it. I now don't take any 'side road' that happens to pop up in surging water unless I'm prepared.
I am learning the techniques and am quite happy to have started this. There is a place in Channahon, IL where you can park your car, follow the Dupage 3 miles and return via the I&M Canal to your car. i already biked it and know the I&M is clear to pass.