The Michigan Center for Geographic Information indicates that West Michigan (our immediate region) has 6,881 miles of rivers and streams, most of which are highly accessible for kayak use and provide beautiful paddle trips. Note: that this is but a portion of the 51,348 miles recorded for the entire state. We live in a paddler’s paradise; there is no question about it.
Our plan and purpose at Kayak-Kayak is to introduce our friends and fellow paddlers to some of the best of these waters.
In 1968 Congress established a National Wild and Scenic Rivers System to be under the guidance of the Secretary of Agriculture. Michigan is number five in ranking with 17 Wild and Scenic designated rivers, following Oregon, Alaska, Idaho and California. No other midwestern state is even close. So we emphasize this heritage. Five of these Michigan rivers are in the lower pennisula and we schedule paddle, camping trips on them. The Ausable river is an excellent example of one of these leading rivers and also an outstanding blue ribbon trout habitat. We have a paddle/ camping trip staying along the Ausable river in September, a color kaleiscope of nature.
We also like to paddle Pictured Rocks, Drummond Island, Les Cheneux Islands, Grand Island, South Manitou among others….all world class experiences for paddlers. This year we had a small group in The Benjamin Islands paddling the the North Channel. These take more skill and the right equipment.
We are committed to paddling the great places in Michigan as well as those right in our neighborhoods. Come join us!
Paddling the Beach Town waters in West Michigan.
What are the Beach Towns? Ranging from South Haven to Sutton’s Bay, we have defined the Beach Towns for our summer trips to be those places where the local rivers or lakes access Lake Michigan (or are immediately adjacent). These are all wonderful towns filled with history, arrayed with neat and unique spots, possess remarkable natural beauty and, yes, “a river runs through it”to a larger lake called Michigan. Since before the 1800’s these rivers have been the center of commercial activity in otherwise remote locations to source global products. Commerce to these towns means the fur trade, famous old logging rivers that delivered the famous white pine to the mill at the river mouth for further transport to Chicago and other large market distribution points. After the forests immediately on the river bank were harvested the logging activity moved further inland prompting the development of the railroads, thus an entire railroad history is embedded in this region. Note that in the 1870’s and 1880’s more miles of track were laid in Michigan than existed in all of Europe and more than any other state. History abounds amongst the natural beauty of the area and each are recorded in local museums and nature centers that dot the region.