Marquette Recreational Tours
Marquette is surrounded by water: inland lakes, Lake Superior, and many rivers. There is something for everyone – Adults, kids, and adults with physical limitations. Some of our best kayaking tour locations are – Au train and Chocolay River trips for an easy & relaxed experience and the Cataract and Dead River Basin route for a long day that includes picnic, fishing & more. We also have a Presque Isle route which is only for experienced paddlers, and its availability depends entirely on the weather. Tour pricing and availability vary based on the season and the specific trip you’re looking for, but there’s no denying that there’s a lot to see and do in and around Marquette.
There is something for everyone. Our guests can rent canoes, kayaks, and one tandem kayak for $25 each (including transportation/paddle/PDF). Children under the age of 12 are only permitted in tandem kayaks or canoes under parental supervision. They have river kayaks, so paddling the big lake is only possible on “calm” days and with prior kayaking experience.
Best Places for Kayaking in Marquette & Munising
Trip time: Approximately 2 hours
Distance from Superior Stay Hotel: 6 min (2.5 miles)
Only experienced paddlers and depending on the weather!
Presque Isle’s sandy beach is accessible from the island’s west side (great for a little dip in the water before or after paddling). This two-hour cruise follows the island’s shoreline while looking out at the open water. There are many magnificent bluffs, cliffs, and little caves – clean, crystal blue or green water where every rock and pebble can be seen even at depths of 30 feet. Paddling across the harbor’s break-wall, landing at the yacht harbor right next to the ore dock and loading up the massive iron ore ships.
Trip time: Approximately 90min – 4-5 hr
Distance from Superior Stay Hotel: 36 min (26.1 miles)
Cataract Basin is around 35 minutes from Marquette. This tour is available in three different lengths, ranging from 90 minutes to 4-5 hours (or longer). One can paddle this lovely dammed up river, surrounded by forest and several hills and little islands, for as long or as short as one desires – perhaps trailing some fishing lines – or continue up river into a narrow, twisting wilderness area up to the waterfalls. The waterfalls and rapids are ideal for a picnic, a dip in the water, or some fishing…and then a relaxed paddle back down river. The long upstream trip requires considerable strength, but it is not difficult.
Trip time: Approximately 1 hour
Distance from Superior Stay Hotel: 20 min (12.0 miles)
The Chocolay river is only 10-20 minutes from Marquette and easily accessible. This one-hour tour takes you down the headwaters of the Chocolay River to where it enters Lake Superior. This is a really picturesque cruise along the river with lots of waterfowl before crossing the majestic Lake Superior waters and looking out at an unending horizon toward the city of Marquette hidden in the green hills (Lake Superior extension will only occur on favorable water days/decisions made by tour guide).
Au train River
Trip time: 2-4 hours
Distance from Superior Stay Hotel: 36 min (32.6 miles)
The Au train River meanders about 2-4 hours (depending on paddle speed and take out location) through the sandy backlands of Lake Superior, about 35 minutes from Marquette. Pines, cedar swamps, sandy beaches, picnic areas, and a vast variety of waterfowl, turtles, and toads are common. It’s quite easy and peaceful, almost like a lazy river, yet it takes you through magnificent scenery. (Due to overcrowding, The tour will only be conducted on off-season days or early in the morning.)
What to wear while Kayaking in Marquette?
Pants or shorts are both acceptable. However, we recommend against wearing blue jeans or another cotton because it can be uncomfortable and cold if wet.
We try our best to keep your feet dry, but that isn’t always possible. Most of our clients prefer to wear some water shoe or outdoor sandal (Chaco, Keen, Teva, etc). Some wear tennis shoes and take the chance they’ll get wet. It’s up to you!
What to carry?
- Water or Sports Drink
- Bug Repellant
- Lunch/snack (for Grand Island full day trips)
I am a former special education and health teacher and have the ability to make all my clients feel accomplished and proud when touring with me. This feeling of accomplishment and the safety of my clients are my foremost goals. I am also very experienced in reading the weather conditions and safety of lake ice. If I am not out on a tour you will find me checking familiar trails and ice formations or looking for new possibilities.