Kayaking In Wisconsin

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Are you planning a trip to Wisconsin anytime soon?

Do you like to kayak and spend time outdoors on the water?

Would you like to head out kayaking in some of the best spots in Wisconsin?

If you have any time to spare while you’re in Wisconsin, and happen to love kayaking too, we definitely think you will love the spots we are going to talk about. In this article, we will share with you information about 9 such spots that will be perfect to try out kayaking when you are there.

From the exact location to the price range to the skill levels required for each spot to what else you can do nearby and how long the trip might take, we are sharing all these details here and more. So, if you’re ready to head out and make the most of your trip there, read down till the end and find out your perfect spot.

Is Wisconsin known as a great destination for kayaking?

Wisconsin may not be the most known or popular place for kayaking and canoeing lovers, but the fact is that it has some really beautiful water ways that make it a great place to head out for kayaking. More than tourists flocking to the place, who definitely do, you will also find it to be especially popular among the local crowd.

What makes this a prime area/location for this paddling activity?

  • Wisconsin has a number of lakes and rivers that gives it enough amount of water for kayak lover to come right in.  
  • Most of these spots are not very far from the major cities and are easily accessible.
  • Yet another good thing that makes Wisconsin such a prime location for this sort of paddling activity is the fact that you will easily find a number of outfitters and rentals who can help you out with the kayak or canoe as well as any gear you may need.
  • You will also easily have access to guides and guided tours to help you navigate and explore the water.

9 of the best places to go kayaking in Wisconsin

While there are many spots in Wisconsin that are great for kayaking, here are the best 9 spots that you should definitely try out while you are there:

Option #1

Apostle Islands Sea Caves

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner to Moderate
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • A group of 22 islands located in Lake Superior in north Wisconsin
  • 46°57′55″N 90°39′51″W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – Dreamcatcher Sailing, go hiking through Brownstone Trail, take some time out to read at the Bayfield Public Library, go hiking at the Big Ravine Trail, visit the Bayfield Heritage Association or the Stone’s Throw Art Gallery, the Bayfield Maritime Museum, Hauser’s Superior View Orchard  
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Get to see caves up close
  • Great for kids
  • Lot of scenic knowledge on the way
  • Plenty of things to see and do nearby

Cons

  • Choose outfitter wisely

Option #2

Fox River

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • Located in the Great Lakes region of Eastern Wisconsin
  • 44.54°N 88.005°W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – the Automobile Gallery, the National Railroad Museum, Marcus Hollywood Cinema Grand Chute, Fox Cities Performing Arts Centre
  • The perfect place for beginners to practice easily at a stretch
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Very peaceful river
  • Calm water
  • Easy paddling
  • Beautiful scenic views

Cons

  • Most customers seem to love the overall experience – no cons

Option #3. Kickapoo River  

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner to Moderate
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • In the Driftless Area
  • 43°53′53″N 90°27′27″W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • This offer is a more popular spot
  • Towering limestone cliffs as you kayak
  • The best spots are between Ontario and La Farge
  • Things to see and do – Driftless Area Art Festival, Driftless Music Festival, Canoe Race and Music Festival, Viroqua’s Restored Theatre, Farmers’ Market
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Perfect for younger kids
  • Ample outfitters
  • Scenic views
  • Many landings

Cons

  • This choice can be too crowded during the peak season

Option #4

Mecan River

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner to Moderate
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours, multiple days, overnight

Exact location

  • Located at the State’s centre near Princeton
  • 43°48′12″N 89°13′1″W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – Princeton Flea Market, Woolbright’s River City Antique Mall, Soda’s Farm Market, Megow Park, Daiseye shopping
  • Onsite gear rental available
  • You will get to see a lot of animals as well as typical Wisconsin plants and terrain while you move along on your kayak

Pros

  • Really gorgeous
  • Relaxing
  • Easy paddling
  • Not many other kayakers around
  • Quiet and peaceful

Cons

  • Choose outfitters wisely

Option #5

Monastery Falls

Difficulty/skill level: Moderate to Difficult
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • Located in Red River in Kewaunee County
  • 44°38′9″N 87°43′25″W

Description of the site/area

  • Not the most suited for young children or senior citizens
  • Things to see and do – Goose Lake Trail, Rockin’ 3M Amphitheatre, Mallette Park Nature Trail
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Full whitewater adventure
  • Easily accessible
  • Ample outfitters

Cons

  • This option may get stuck between rocks

Option #6

Namekagon River

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner to Moderate
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours, multiple days, overnight

Exact location

  • Northern Wisconsin near Hayward
  • 46.08772°N 92.18075°W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – Wisconsin Great Northern Train Ride, Snorkelling at Cable Wayside, Junior Ranger Program, camping at Sandrock Cliffs
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Beautiful landscape
  • Fun easy rapids
  • Perfect for camping
  • Lot of greenery around

Cons

  • Most people seem to love it overall

Option #7

Neenah Creek

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner to Moderate
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location:

  • Winnebago County

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – Paper Discovery Centre, Special Memories Zoo, Badger Sports Park, The Building for Kids
  • Make sure to keep an eye out for the water creatures and wild life that you can easily spot as you kayak
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Beautiful scenery
  • Ample marine and wild life
  • Calm water
  • Good for beginners

Cons

  • Most people seem to love it overall 

Option #8

Wisconsin River

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • Lower Wisconsin River
  • 42°59′22″N 91°09′14″W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do –
  • Watch out for and enjoy the tall bluffs that will come rising from beneath the dense forests
  • Try and spot the wildlife and scenery
  • Onsite gear rental available

Pros

  • Flat wide water
  • Relaxed paddling
  • Easy for beginners
  • Gorgeous views

Cons

  • Choose outfitter carefully

Option #9. Wolf River

Difficulty/skill level: Easy/Beginner
Trip cost/price: $
Trip duration: Whole day, half day, a few hours

Exact location

  • Great Lakes region in northeastern Wisconsin
  • 44°05′33″N 88°41′33″W

Description of the site/area

  • Family-friendly
  • Things to see and do – Langlade County’s Trail System, Fishing, Menominee Cultural Museum
  • Onsite gear rental available 

Pros

  • Very scenic
  • Calm water
  • Perfect for beginners and families

Cons

  • Be careful around large rocks

When is the best time to come to Wisconsin for kayaking?

The best time to come to Georgia for kayaking is between the months of April and October.

Is there a high and low season for this activity?

The months between April and October usually see a higher turnout of people who come over for kayaking. During the remaining months, the weather conditions are not always the best, as well as the water levels that may not be the best for kayaking, which is when the number of people who come for kayaking is less.

How different is the experience during peak vs lean season?

The peak season is usually more crowded as compared to the lean season. Also, the water levels and the weather will be more conducive to kayaking during the peak months, as opposed to the lean months.

Now that we have shared so many spots with you that are already so loved by kayak enthusiasts, we hope you have surely found some that are best suited to what you are looking for. Make sure to keep a little extra time in hand, so that you are not too rushed.

And yes, while you are ready to enjoy your time on the water, make sure that you and your loved ones always wear the life jacket, so that you can all have loads of fun, while being safe as well.

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