Sea Kayak the Wild North Shore from Wawa to Otter Island. Discover the history and experience the rugged beauty of the north shore of Lake Superior in this self-reliant expedition training trip.

Paddle Lake Superior and enjoy empty, sandy and cobblestone beaches, rugged Canadian shield, endless Boreal forest, waterfalls and wildlife.

Our seasoned Lake Superior trip guides will lead and coach a small group leaving Wawa heading west along the historic shoreline to Otter Island then back east to Wawa.

Our guides have a strong interest in the local history of Lake Superior so we will take time to explore lighthouses, abandoned logging camps and old trappers cabins. Our route will also take us past the historic ghost town of Pukaskwa Depot which during the 1900’s housed over 400 men and acted as one of the main base of operations for logging along the north shore.

We will also visit several sites where the mysterious Pukaskwa Pits are located. These rock-lined pits dug in cobblestone beaches are about one to two meters long and one and a half meters deep and are estimated to be between 400 and 7,000 years old!

Trip details

This 10-day training kayak trip on Lake Superior is an empowering, memorable experience where paddlers hone their skills and learn the valuable asset of self-reliance on a kayaking expedition.

We originally came up with the self-reliant theme way back in 2010 as a way to help Ontario’s sea kayakers take the next step in their expedition paddling skills. Lake Superior is the world’s largest inland sea which can produce unpredictable conditions in a very short time. We help participants plan their own personal gear and menu plans, pack for a long trip without re-supply and make the right risk management decisions to execute a successful trip.

Paddle Canada certification

As part of the trip we are proud to also offer the Paddle Canada Wilderness Camping and Expedition Camping certifications.

To facilitate this, we will organize pre-trip training classes over Zoom to teach topics such as navigation and map reading skills, expedition food preparation, route planning, etc.

Throughout the trip we will complete the rest of the syllabus topics.

Learn more about what’s covered in the Wilderness Camping and Expedition Camping certifications.

What to expect on this kayaking adventure

  • learn trip planning, including navigation and weather interpretation,
  • learn menu planning, packing and food preparation for extended trips or expeditions,
  • learn the skills of expedition self-reliance,
  • learn how to plan and pack paddling and camping equipment,
  • improve paddling skills like strokes and advanced rescues,
  • share tips and stories with group members around the campfire and on the water,
  • apply navigation skills and map work,
  • gain a better understanding of weather conditions, risk management,
  • build leadership and teamwork skills, facilitated by the guides,
  • and of course the most beautiful sea kayaking in Ontario and world-class lingering sunsets.

Your trip guides and skill development facilitators

Ray Boucher and David Johnston have been teaching sea kayak courses and guiding on Lake Superior for almost 20 years and it is still one of their favourite places to paddle. 

Having two senior Paddle Canada instructors along on the trip is a rare commodity and allows for a 10-day overhaul of paddling and rescue skills development as well as trip navigation and weather planning. Tripping with highly skilled coaches allows the group to choose to experiment with rougher paddling conditions to increase participant’s open-water paddling skill-set. Having guides who have paddled this coast many times over the years means you will see the best parts of the coast and camp at the most spectacular sites.

10 days / 9 nights

Price p.p. from:

$1,895 

plus taxes

Dates

July 22–31, 2022

Participant Skill Level

Please contact us with any question related to these trip prerequisites.

  • Paddle Canada Level-2 skills certificate or equivalent experience.
  • Some overnight wilderness camping experience.

 Trip Route Map

Here’s a map of our travel route, to help put things in perspective.

 Trip Itinerary

A day-by-day plan to guide your journey ahead. Just keep in mind that it may change due to weather or group needs.

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Meet and Start the Trip!

A photo of the Pukaskwa Coast on Lake Superior. Photo by David Johnston

Our group will meet in Michipicoten Village and pack the kayaks to get started. Paddling out onto Lake Superior our first destination will be McCoy's Harbour.

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Visit Otter Island Lighthouse

Otter Island Lighthouse

Built in 1903 this historic octagonal wooden tower rises 70 feet above the lake. It has a long history of accidents and tragedy for the lighthouse keepers maintaining it over the years.

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Dennison Falls

Hike back to see the epic Dennison Falls.

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Trip is all done

Our trip will end at our cars in Michipicoten Village followed by hugs and tears.

  Meet Your Guides

Ray Boucher

Ray Boucher lives in Wawa Ontario with his wife Patty. Ray has been a school teacher and an x-ray technologist, and enjoys spending his time working and recreating in the outdoors.

Learn More

David Johnston

David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 20 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada.

Learn More

 What's Included

Don’t worry, we’ve got this covered.

Included

  • 10-Day kayaking adventure guided by highly certified kayak instructors.
  • Pre-trip online meetings with your guides.
  • Wilderness Camping and Expedition Camping certification (to those who qualify).
  • Training sessions before and throughout the trip on how to plan and execute an expedition.
  • Parking fees for cars while on trip.
  • Paddle Canada certification fees.
  • Camping fees while in Pukaskwa National Park

What's Not Included

  • Kayak and kayaking gear (rentals are available).
  • Camping gear and trip meals.
  • Trip interruption/cancellation medical evacuation insurance (recommended).
  • Accommodation pre- or post-trip.

What You Should Bring

A detailed gear list is sent before the start of the trip but this can get you started.

  • Touring sea kayak with required safety gear.
  • Camping gear and clothing.
  • Meals and snacks.
  • We will send an extensive gear list at the start of the training period.
10 days / 9 nights

Price p.p. from:

$1,895 

plus taxes

Dates

July 22–31, 2022

I had a wonderful time! Stress-free and well organized.

Mary H.

 Drive your Car

Drive your vehicle to Wawa, Ontario to meet your guides. Here they will assist you on where to safely park your vehicle for the duration of the trip.

 Take the Bus

Don’t have a car? No problem, you can take the bus from Toronto or any other Ontario town directly to Wawa. We can arrange a pick up for you from the bus station and a drive to the launch point.

 Nearest International Airport

The nearest airport is in Wawa though if you’re doing that, you’re probably better to fly into Sault Ste. Marie and rent a car.

 Pre and Post-Trip Accommodation

There are various motels and campgrounds to stay locally the night before the trip starts and after if needed. We will provide those options closer to the trip planning stage.

The Small Print

$300 Deposit due on booking. Second payment April 1st, Final Payment June 1st.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have about this trip or about any of our other trips or courses.

Email Us Call Us: 905-399-1216