Uncle Ducky’s “Paddlers Village” Christmas, Michigan
On Lake Superior and catering to Kayakers, Canoeists, Paddleboarders, Hikers, and anyone who loves the outdoors.
Yurts, Cabins, Pop Up Campers and Tent sites. Showers, restrooms, grills, picnic tables and fire rings. Relax on the beach with great views of Grand Island and Lake Superior at your doorstep. At “Paddlers Village” an unforgettable experience can be stargazing over Lake Superior. The sights are incredible and you may have a chance to see the Northern Lights. Having a campfire and beach combing are other great activities. There is a 1/3 mile long beach just adjacent to our property that is open to anyone. Look for driftwood, rocks, and agates. Kayak and Paddleboard rentals on the beach.
Most of our paddlers will be touring in a Looksha T model tandem kayak. The max weight capacity 625 lbs for 2 paddlers but weight is normally not a restricting factor as is body size. The cockpits are 17.3 X 35 inches in size and they are elongated. Maximum width is 17.3 inches. If you cannot fit into a space of about 17 inches it is highly likely you will not be able to fit into this space. You must be able to freely get in and out of the cockpit.
Anytime between May 15th and September 30th is good but there are some differences. In the spring the water is obviously colder and more precautions need to be taken to guard against hypothermia just in case one went in the water. Wet suits are the norm and we also try to make our groups smaller this time of year. Every year is different but around July 15th we no longer use wet suits as the water temperature gets above 55 degrees but they are always available. The water stays above this threshold well into the fall and only in very late September wet suits again are used. In the fall and normally around August 20th the wind picks up and can become a problem throughout the fall period. So, the best time of the year to kayak here is from June 15th through August 20th. Perfect weather cannot be guaranteed but the mid summer period has the best shot at it.
The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore which is a National Park is located between the towns of Grand Marais and Munising on the southern shore of Lake Superior. The National Park is 42 miles in length and the actual area of rocks and cliffs is about 12 miles in length. Giant dunes and wooded shoreline make up the balance of the park. Distances in driving times from major cities in the midwest are: Detroit 6 hrs, Chicago 7 hrs, Milwaukee 6 hrs, and Minneapolis 8 hrs.
Yes- Visa, Master Card, Discover, and American Express. We prefer that you do use a credit card and we do require one for a reservation. However, for large groups we prefer checks or cash or if you would like to pay cash that can be arranged.
Our large triple and double kayaks can generally handle someone up close to 300 lbs. We have take some youngsters as young as 3 in our triple kayaks. The weather is also a consideration on some days too. Foot size can also be important. Normally we can handle someone that has a foot size up to 14. Make sure to discuss these issues when you schedule with us.
This depends upon the time of year. From May 15th when we start our trips through around the end of June the water is very cold and wet suits are worn. We can provide a wet suit for you. Normally a Farmer John type of 3mm is best for kayaking. Splash jackets are also great. Do not wear any cotton or denim material clothing because it does not dry fast and retains water. Synthetic type clothing is best. Bathing suit type materials and also some type of water shoes or sandals are needed since we often stop in rocky area for lunch. Once July rolls around and the water temp climbs above 50 degrees F. the wet suits become optional. Once the water temp climbs above 60 degrees we normally do not wear wet suits as they can cause overheating. In then late fall (September) we often go back to wet suits because of the cooler air even if the water temp is still above 50 degrees.
No you are not required to, but we would certainly appreciate a call the day prior sometime as it helps in our guide and equipment planning. If you do not check in we cannot guarantee a specific kayak for you.
You bet we do! Tents 2-6 man, self inflating sleeping pads, stoves, water purifiers, dry bags, Cookware, mess kits, utensils, food storage containers, storage barrels, freeze dried meals , fresh fruit if requested, fire starters, trash bags, toiletries, chairs, tables, and much more.
No we do not. You should have a mummy style bag for all kayak trips.
Yes we do. Of different sizes as well.
Pictured Rocks Day Trips: 9:00 AM EST Uncle Ducky Outdoors Shop
1331 W. Hwy M-28- Munising, MI or at other assigned times- 12:00 Noon for Taste of the Rocks (afternoon) and 2:30 for Afternoon Delight trip
Grand Island Day Trips “Same as above”
Marquette Trips (Presque Isle) 10:00 AM EST 321 S. Lakeshore, Marquette,MI
(Our Shop at Dockside Marine) South of Large Ore Dock In Lower Harbor
We only use tandem kayaks due to their stability. On a rare occasion we may offer a single kayak but this must be initiated by a guide in order to get an odd person on the tour on a very calm day.
Light Winds, waves forecasted to be in the 0-2 range, and no thunderstorms forecasted more frequently than a chance of (30%) by the National Weather Service. A High Presssure over the area. Winds from the southeast or east under 15kts are also good.
Do not go totally by what a television or radio station says. They like to exaggerate and many people have lost a great day of paddling by not getting a professional weather forecast. Here is a link to the Marquette, Michigan National Weather Service Website for Marine Weather Forecasts.
We paddle in light rain. We also paddle in fog. The major obstacles to a paddling trip are wind and high waves, lightning, heavy rain, and cold. Remember you are exercising as you paddle, so it might be a little cool to start but you’ll warm up very soon.
If Thunderstorms are forecast to be numerous (70%) or likely (50%), (used by the National Weather Service) then we do not go in the time period designated by the forecast. If they are forecast-ed with a chance of ( 30%), or a slight chance (10%) we then consult with a national weather service meteorologist before proceeding with the trip.
Deposits: A 50% deposit is required on all trips that are scheduled prior to May 1st and on all large group reservations over 10 persons at any time. The 50% deposit requirement does not apply to any trips that are purchased at a discounted price. These trips require full payment at the time of purchase. After May 1st and before November 1st full payment is required at the time of the reservation unless it is for the following year.
Charge: Your credit card will be charged for the balance due prior to 5:00 pm on the day prior to the departure of your trip.
Cancellation: You may cancel your reservation and have your payment refunded at any time prior to 7 days prior to the date of your trip for any reason. A $25 administrative fee will be deducted. Large Groups (10 or more) may not cancel over 30 days prior to the scheduled date of the trip. Minor variations in the total number of participants is not considered a cancellation for those individuals such as scout groups with a large number of people.
Day Trips: 7 days notice for a full refund. Administrative fee of $25 will be deducted from a refund. Will be credited to any further booking.
Less than 7 days: Refund 75% of trip value less$25 administrative fee
Less than 3 days : Refund 50% of trip value less $25 administrative fee.
Less than 24 hours (All Reservations) No Refund
Day of Trip: No refund
Cancellations on the day of your trip for any reason other than the cancellation of the trip by our guides due to weather or other reasons initiated by the company will not be issued a refund. No shows will not be issued a refund of any amount. Weather Cancellation Policy:
In that neither our customers or our company are responsible for the weather our weather cancellation policy is as follows: If we cannot paddle in the Pictured Rocks we can often make the crossing and paddle the east shoreline of Grand Island which will constitute the same as a Pictured Rocks tour. If you choose not to make the Grand Island paddle you will be issued a rain check to paddle again with us at a future date. If we cannot make the Grand Island paddle you will be issued a guaranteed spot on a subsequent day.
Most of our guests have never been in a sea kayak before. But if you can hike, bike, or swim, you can paddle our sea kayaks. No previous experience is necessary! Nor do you need any swimming skills. Anyone in average physical condition may join a kayak tour. The only prerequisite is a healthy spirit of curiosity and adventure. Regardless of your age or skill level you will find that our expeditions offer enough flexibility to make your experience with us safe and rewarding. We will show you proper sea kayaking technique and water safety before leaving the beach. Our boats comfortably hold two paddlers and an abundance of gear. Single kayaks are also available. They are extremely safe and stable, yet swift and easy to maneuver with foot-controlled rudders. Due to their modern design and safety features, you will never have to “Eskimo roll” or capsize!
Yes to both questions. We can take groups up to 40 participants in size on both day and multi-day paddling trips. We have a standard discount of large groups of 10%, an additional discount of 5% for a NP group, and a further discount of 5 % if the trips are taken outside of the July 15-August 15 time period.
Closest is the Munising Tourist Park Campground which we feel is the best in the area. On the shores of Lake Superior just across from Grand Island. About 2 miles west of Munising. Website is: www.munisingtouristpark.com and phone # for a reservation is 906-387-3145.
We recommend the Sunset Motel on the Bay. Website: www.sunsetmotelonthebay.com Phone # 906-387-4574. Great location, great rooms, wonderful family. Otherwise check out the lodging section on www.munising.org
If you can document that everyone in your group has received training in wet exits and recoveries in sea kayaks, weather, navigation and required safety equipment or has taken the training from us then we will rent to you. This training must have been received from an ACA certified instructor and must have been completed within the last 2 years.
Explanation: The Pictured Rocks section of the Lake Superior shoreline constitutes a 12 mile area of 200 feet cliffs that descend directly into the lake with no beaches. As waves hit these cliffs no energy is dissipated and returns directly to the lake only making waves higher. If one should upset in a kayak and is not able to get back in there is no beach to swim to. On our guided tours we have personnel there to help and generally if is too rough we just don’t go anyway. If you are inexperienced the guided trip is definitely the way to go.
We use tandem (double) sea kayaks on all of our kayak tours. Triple kayaks are available for families with small children and can be used to accommodate folks who can’t paddle but still want to participate on a kayaking trip. All outfitters who put safety as the top priority follow this policy. The reasons for using tandems or triples are as follows:
•Speed – Length equals speed. Therefore, the longer waterline of a tandem kayak makes it significantly faster than a solo kayak. Our triple kayaks are even faster! This is important when a group is faced with crossing an exposed body of water when weather threatens.
•Stability – The extra width of a tandem kayak provides excellent stability. You’ll appreciate this most in choppy water, and when taking pictures. The greater stability of tandems allows us extra freedom to travel in a greater variety of sea conditions.
•Flexibility – With tandems we have the option to pair people of different strengths so the entire group can move at the same pace. No one gets separated from the group this way. Also, if someone develops a minor injury or illness during the kayak tour, they can get relief from paddling by being seated in a tandem kayak. Please note that if you come with a partner or friend, you can expect to paddle with that person for the entire trip! The need to change partners occurs very rarely, and usually only for a brief period of the trip!
Yes we have our 4 hour Taste of the Rocks” tour and the 2.5 Morning and Afternoon Delight Tours.
Yes, but there is a requirement of 4 paddlers an additional fee of $200 as we have to use an additional guide, vehicle, and trailer. Note: The fee only applies if there are other people scheduled that day. Also, if you have 10 or more and qualify as a group then there is no additional fee either.
Pictured Rocks National Park does not allow any domestic animals on the backcountry where we kayak. However, we do have a kennel at our shop where we can keep them for you. Free of charge but you must make a reservation by calling us at 906-228-5447.