Join us on a kayak tour of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Experience a series of sea kayaking and hiking day trips from our Little Sand Bay Base Camp, including beautiful Sand Island, the Mawikwe Sea Caves, Bark Bay Slough, or the shipwrecks of Red Cliff Bay. So many day trip options await you on this popular Apostle Islands offering just north of Bayfield, Wisconsin. Enjoy delicious food, experience breathtaking sunsets over Lake Superior, and listen to waves crash along the shore. The Apostle Islands National Lake Shore is great for beginning sea kayakers and seasoned paddlers alike.
ItineraryExpand All Fields
Day 1: Welcome to WI's beautiful base camp at Little Sand Bay.
In the afternoon meet at our beautiful base camp at Little Sand Bay. Review personal gear, participate in a sea kayaking orientation, and get to know your trip mates. Learn about the Lake Superior "Cedar - Hemlock" forest unique to this area, and take a hike to School Bus Rock, a huge boulder deposited by the glaciers 10,000 years ago. Spend the evening at camp roasting marshmallows over the fire.
Day 2: Explore the Mawikwe Bay Sea Caves by day and enjoy a campfire by night.
Rise early for a delicious breakfast paired with a steaming cup of coffee. Review paddling skills with your guides and start exploring the area. Depending on the weather and wind direction, explore the spectacular Mawikwe Bay Sea Caves or drive to Red Cliff to explore Buffalo Bay and paddle among 19th century shipwrecks. Enjoy a casual paddle back to the beach and head back to base camp for dinner. Listen to stories about many of the Lake Superior shipwrecks around the campfire in the evening.
Day 3: Paddle a scenic route from Little Sand Bay to Sand Island.
Kayak out to Sand Island to explore the Swallow Point sea caves, Justice Bay, and the historic Sand Island lighthouse on the northeast shore. Eat lunch on a remote beach and, weather permitting, kayak in and out of the caves' sculpted rock chambers. Enjoy one last night at our Little Sand Bay Base Camp with hot showers, great food, and good company.
Day 4: Enjoy one final adventure before saying farewell to your trip mates.
After breakfast, partake in one final adventure. Enjoy sharing stories with your trip mates over lunch before your afternoon departure.
Dates & Fees
WI leads trips to Apostle Islands but currently has no dates scheduled for this itinerary. If you have a group of people interested, we can set up a customized adventure just for you! Please contact us or request a trip quote below if you are interested in a group trip to this destination.
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What to Expect
ACCOMMODATIONS: You will enjoy your stay at our Little Sand Bay Base Camp. At night you will sleep on comfortable cots in platform tents. Typically, there are 2-3 people per 4-person platform tent (other arrangements can be made). Our Little Sand Bay Base Camp has very nice bathrooms and shower facilities with hot water.
MEALS: We’ll enjoy preparing our meals together in our rustic base camp kitchens using fresh, healthy ingredients for bountiful dishes. Rise to the smell of freshly brewed coffee to enjoy with your breakfast of eggs, oatmeal, or granola. We’ll pack picnic lunches with hearty snacks before heading off to explore. In the evening, we’ll prepare our dinner together over stoves and campfires and then finish with s’mores or a glass of wine. If you have special dietary restrictions, be sure to list them on your registration.
TYPE OF TRAVEL/DISTANCE: You will either hike or paddle in Current Design sea kayaks which hold 2 or 3 people plus all necessary gear. An average day’s travel consists of 2-6 paddling and/or hiking hours, depending on weather conditions. Travel distances vary from 4-6 miles each day. No previous sea kayaking experience is needed to complete this trip.
YOUR GROUP: As part of our ongoing COVID-19 safety protocols, all of our groups in 2021 will be made up of 3-12 people who know each other and have indicated they are comfortable traveling together and 1-2 Wilderness Inquiry guides. We welcome people of various ages, backgrounds, and abilities, including people with disabilities. Our trips are cooperative in nature. WI staff will assist you in whatever areas you need, however, most people pitch in where they can.
EQUIPMENT AND CLOTHING: Wilderness Inquiry will provide all sea kayak gear and group equipment. You will be assigned the same gear for the duration of your trip and it will be sanitized between trips. You will need to provide your personal gear as outlined in the packing list. If you are new to outdoor activities, you do not need to spend a lot of money. Wilderness Inquiry can usually arrange for you to borrow most items.
HEALTH PRE-SCREENING: Upon your arrival, we will perform a health screening that will include confirming that you have no COVID-19 related symptoms (for example: fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat) or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19 related symptoms within the last 2 weeks. We will also take each group member’s temperature daily. If COVID-19 related symptoms develop during your trip, the trip will end immediately and everyone must return home as soon as safely able.
SAFETY WHILE ON TRAIL: All participants and staff will wear masks when social distancing is not possible (i.e. loading/unloading boats, cooking, etc.) or when requested by a WI staff member. Participants will provide their own transportation to/from programming sites. Participants and staff will not share vehicles. Where available, participant groups will be assigned their own bathroom for the duration of the trip. When not possible, such as in backcountry sites, cleaning between each use will be facilitated. Thorough hand washing and/or gloves and masks will be worn during meal preparation.Read more »