Now this is sea kayaking!
In the middle of Lake Superior, Isle Royale is the most remote and spectacular sea kayaking destination in the Midwest. Gichigami, as Superior is called, can be calm or challenging, but she always provides an adventure.
Join Stone Harbor on this sea kayaking journey as we explore the wild beauty of Isle Royale’s magnificent shore. On this six-day (and five nights) trip, we visit protected coves, nearby smaller islands, abandoned fishing villages and restored lighthouses. We also have plenty of time to relax and explore some of the many hiking trails found within one of the least-visited national parks in the U.S. This is a trip will you will treasure for a lifetime!
We are planning our 2021 Isle Royale trips
Ferry service to the Isle Royale is canceled for the summer of 2020, so we are planning our trips for 2021. Call us at 218-387-3136 to book an Isle Royale trip for 2021.
The cost of the Isle Royale Sea Kayaking Adventure starts at $1750 per person (depending on actual length of the trip). This trip includes all necessary food, gear, entry fees and transportation to and from the island. Guests are responsible for securing their own accommodations in or around Grand Marais the night prior to the trip, as well as the night after returning to Grand Marais, if desired. There is a mandatory gear check the night before we leave, so each guest needs to be available on that date.
Note: This is a typical itinerary. Call us at 218-387-3136 to customize an Isle Royale trip just for you.
Night before: Mandatory gear check.
Day 1: Travel from Grand Marais to Isle Royale. After our arrival, we will have enough time to set up camp and provide some initial instruction for any guest in need.
Day 2: Kayak from Rock Harbor to Daisy Farm. This trip is a great opening paddle of six miles and allows plenty of time for adventuring in and around Mott Island. We will set up camp early enough to take an evening hike up Mt. Ojibway.
Day 3: Kayak from Daisy Farm to Chippewa Harbor. This leg is seven miles, and should take under four hours, leaving time for an inland hike, if desired. The area between Chickenbone Lake and Lake Richie is prime for moose sightings. From our camp at Chippewa Harbor to Lake Richie, the hike is approximately 2.75 miles each way and not overly difficult.
Day 4: We will spend the day kayaking from Chippewa Harbor to Malone Bay Campground. This is the longest leg of the trip, but still is less than 10 miles. Although the distance is further than any previous leg, this portion should be less dependent on favorable winds. There are several island chains close to shore offering significant protection should there be wind out of the east.
Day 5: After a short portage, (about ¼ mile) we will spend the day navigating Siskiwit Lake. Ryan Island is located on the east end of the lake – after visiting, you’ll be able to say you’ve been on the largest island in the largest freshwater lake in the world! If taking a direct route to the island, it is approximately 1.75 miles each direction.
Day 6: Prepare for departure. Ferry pick-up is 10 am. We’ll return to Grand Marais about 6 pm.
Packing ListWhat We Provide
- Kayak and kayak accessories
- Transportation from our store to Isle Royale
- All necessary cooking and base camp equipment (we won’t make you whittle your own fork)
- Wetsuit (or bring your own)
- Wetsuit shoes (or bring your own)
- Sleeping bag (or bring your own)
- Thermarest sleeping pad (or bring your own)
- Tent (or bring your own)
- Dry bags (or bring your own)
Recommended Packing List
- Swim suit
- Short sleeve quick-dry shirt (example: Rab Aeon Tee)
- Long sleeve quick-dry shirt (example: NRS HydroSilk Shirt)
- Quick-dry shorts
- Paddling footwear (lightweight, quick-drying water shoes; sandals are ok but no flip-flops)
- Hat with wide brim (for sun & rain protection)
- Fleece, wool or synthetic beanie
- Polarized sunglasses & strap
- Paddling gloves (recommended to prevent blisters and sunburn)
- Convertible quick-dry pants (not jeans)
- Long sleeve camp shirt
- Fleece jacket
- Lightweight hiking shoes, or other shoes to stay dry
- Wool or synthetic socks (forget cotton!)
- Breathable rain gear top & bottom (no ponchos please, as it is difficult to swim in them in case of an upset)
- Something comfy to sleep in, if you like
- Base layer (top & bottom)
- Bug dope
- Headlamp or flashlight, with extra batteries
- Water bottle or hydration pack
- Optional: favorite book or other things to do during quiet time
- Optional: camera in a waterproof, protective case
- If needed: medications
- If needed: eye glasses and/or contact lenses and spare
- Toothbrush & toothpaste
- Quick-dry towel (example: Sea to Summit Dry Lite Towel)
- Mild soap & shampoo (remember: all suds will end up in the ground! We recommend Dr. Bronner’s)
- Hand lotion
- Comb (if you care)
- You can bring fishing gear if you want but remember: you catch ’em, you clean ’em
- A Michigan fishing license is required in Lake Superior and when transporting fish to the mainland. A fishing license is not required to fish inland waters of Isle Royale.
Are you missing something from the equipment list? All participants receive a 10% discount at Stone Harbor on the day before the trip.
All Stone Harbor tours and instruction require active, physical participation on the part of the guest. You must sign the Stone Harbor Guided Tours and Instructional Activities Waiver and Release of Liability form and the Stone Harbor Confidential Medical History form prior to participating in any Stone Harbor tour or instruction. Please call us at 218-387-3136 if you have any questions about the physical requirements or the risks associated with the activities.
Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply requires tours to be paid in full at the time of booking. If a cancellation notice is given greater than 48 hours before the scheduled tour, a full refund is granted, minus the $20 processing fee per person. No refund is given for cancellations within 48 hours of the tour.
If Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply cancels a tour ahead of time due to weather or other unforeseeable events, a full refund is given. Please note that light rain, snow, fog, or cooler temperatures do not cancel a tour. We are prepared with the correct equipment for different weather conditions.
We are committed to your safety. Our safety policy can be found here.
Do you love those pictures from Isle Royale? We do too! Our thanks to Beth Poliquin, the talented photographer.