Isle Royale Kayaking Tours

Photo: Ryan Holt

Isle Royale Kayaking Tours

Copper HarborIsle Royale Kayaking, Isle Royale Ferry is one of two ports in Michigan providing passenger ferry service to Isle Royale National Park, which is one of just five National Park Service sites in Michigan! Isle Royale is the largest island in the largest freshwater lake in the world, and is the least visited of all the National Parks — it’s said that more people visit Yellowstone in a day than Isle Royale in an entire season. An Isle Royale kayaking trip offers a true wilderness experience unlike any other place in the world! Hiking and boating are the only means of travel, as no vehicles are allowed on Isle Royale. The island has over 150 miles of shoreline and numerous barrier islands and fjord like bays that can best be explored in a sea kayak.

Isle Royale National Park, Isle Royale Kayaking TripsThe three-hour, 56-mile journey on board the Isle Royale Queen IV across the world’s largest freshwater lake, is the start to your adventure. Gain a first-hand perspective on just how large the BIG lake is and perhaps have a close encounter with a behemoth 1000 freighter while in route. We always try to develop an itinerary that best meets the ambitions, physical abilities and paddling experience of every group, while the trip duration and current marine forecast have an impact on where we will visit. In general, we tend to highlight both the southeast and northeast areas of the Island, as its finger-bays and barrier islands host an area of truly world-class sea kayaking opportunities. It may be possible to schedule a point-to-point tour to other areas of the Island utilizing the water taxi, although additional fees would apply.

Related Adventure Journal posts: “Swapping the Backpack for Kayak “ & “Isle Royale – Open Water Dreaming


Participants need only to provide a compact sleeping bag, pad, their personal items and a sense for adventure (view Suggested Packing List)!

*NOTE: A 10% discount is offered for participants using their own sea kayaks and full outfitting equipment that meet our safety requirements.

Reservations are required at least 3 weeks in advance of the scheduled tour to guarantee availability (although we will try to accommodate requests  made in less than this time if space still exists on a tour that already has a guide confirmed).  Tours can be confirmed with a 50% deposit.

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2016 Isle Royale Schedule
(2017 Schedule Coming Soon…)

June 17 – 20 4 day / 3 night *Summer Solstice Special $799/person
June 25 – 28 4 day / 3 night *June Special $849/person
July 2 – 5 4 day / 3 night $899/person
July 9 – 14 6 day / 5 night $1175/person
July 25- 29 5 day / 4 night $1045/person
August 1 -4 4 day / 3 night  $899/person
August 7 -11 5 day / 4 night $1045/person
August 15 – 18 4 day / 3 night $899/person
August 22 – 26 5 day / 4 night $1045/person
August 29 – September 1 (1 space remains!) 4 day/3 night *End of Summer Special $849/person
September 12 – 16 (2 spaces remains!) 5 day/4 night *September Special $935/person

Isle Royale Kayaking Tours, Isle Royale National Park Ferry

General Trip Information

The Keweenaw Adventure Company operates many of its sea kayak tours in very remote, uninhabited areas. Although our overnight tour guides are certified Wilderness First Responders, emergency and medical response can be distant and time consuming at best. Participants need to be aware that weather conditions on Lake Superior can sometimes be extreme with greatly varying temperature, wind and wave conditions. We will not set out if there are poor conditions on the Lake or if there is an unfavorable marine forecast, but conditions are sometimes subject to change throughout the course of the day. Participants need to be aware for the possibility of cold water immersion and for paddling in choppy or rough water.

Although we do not require previous paddling experience for our multi-day tours (our guides will provide instruction), participants need to be aware that our multi-day sea kayak tours generally paddle between 5 to 15 miles per day. Participants must have the physical ability to complete these routes as evacuations for non-medical emergencies can be nearly impossible.

Our guides have gone through many hours of training and have cumulative years of experience paddling Lake Superior and Isle Royale. Safety is always our number one concern and we do everything possible to manage the risks for our clients!

Isle Royale is the perfect paddling location for all skill levels. Our guide had expert skills and knowledge. I felt I was safe at all times. Every campsite had a magnificent view. There’s nothing better than watching the sun set with the boreal forest in the foreground. This experience was everything I was hoping for.


Nan B.