Float and paddle through fantastic pristine waterways. Canoe & Kayak.
Magic in the Water, Florida. January 12-18. Discover the wild beauty that lured people to Florida long before theme parks. Spend a week paddling crystalline springs and drifting on quiet waterways. Relish long, sunny days in a subtropical paradise. Be greeted by dolphins, manatees, alligators, and throngs of birds. Enjoy snorkeling, birding, fishing, swimming, gourmet dinners, and camaraderie. Kayak rental included. Minimum age: 18. Leader: Patrick Nichols. Price: $995; Dep: $100. [02430A] D E
Sea Kayaking the Florida Everglades. February 16-23. A biologically diverse and fascinating land, the Everglades enthralls all who journey there Join us in this tropical backcountry, where freshwater and sea mix and mingle. We'll sea kayak across expansive bays to beautiful island beaches. A photographer's paradise, serious wilderness, teeming wildlife, and extreme sunsets await. Open-water kayaking experience a must. Kayak rental included. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price: $895; Dep: $100. [02435A] D E
Enchantment in the Springs, Ocala National Forest, Florida. March 10-15, Come paddle the natural wonders of Florida, and immerse yourself in the magic of this subtropical wonderland. Steeped in history and legend, these clear-flowing springs draw you back time and time again. This trip is geared to the entry-level sea kayaker but should be fun for all levels. Our kayaks transport us gently along springs and rivers in the heart of Ocala National Forest. Swim, snorkel, and play in pure rejuvenating water bursting from the aquifer. Kayak rental included. Minimum age: 18. Leader: Patrick Nichols. Price: $995; Dep: $100. [02440A]
Kayaking "Way Down Upon the Suwannee River," Florida and Georgia. March 24-29. Nurtured by a multitude of springs, the Suwannee flows through 200+ miles of ever-changing landscapes from Georgia to the Gulf of Mexico. We'll seek out river otters, alligators, deer, and a wide variety of birds as we kayak this incredibly scenic river. Kayak rental included. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price $595; Dep: $100. [02445A] D
Kayaking "Way Down Upon the Suwannee River," Florida and Georgia. April 1-6. See 02445A, above, for trip description. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price $595; Dep: $100. [02047A]
Exploring Florida's Untouched Coast. April 14-19. We'll travel through salt marshes and estuaries to the narrow strip of land that comprises Canaveral National Seashore. We'll spend our days kayaking island-to-island with time to explore Indian mounds, fish for red snapper, swim, or lounge on the beach. This area of Florida is famous for its birding, world-class fishing, and large manatee population. Kayak rental included. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price: $645; Dep: $100. [02048A] D E
Springtime on the Current River, Missouri. April 28-May 3. Missouri's Ozarks will be blooming as we paddle the clear, spring-fed Current River, one of our National Scenic Riverways. Hickory forests and state natural areas grace our moderately paced river-camping trip. Let whippoorwills lullaby you to sleep in your tent pitched on a gravel bar. We'll paddle daily with time for swimming and relaxing. Though sometimes unpredictable, the weather is generally mild. Some river canoeing experience needed. Leader: Jim Balsitis. Price: $540; Dep: $100. [02200A] P
Ozarks Canoeing on the Buffalo, Buffalo National River, Arkansas. May 5-11. Just imagine -- your canoe is drifting with the current on one of America's last untamed wild rivers, past towering limestone cliffs, vivid wildflowers, historic pioneer homesteads, and primeval hardwood forests teeming with wildlife. The silence is punctuated only by the muffled dip of the paddle as you explore 60 gentle miles of the Buffalo National River through the Arkansas Ozarks. Leaders: Thomas M. Couts and Joan Taylor. Price: $625; Dep: $100. [02201A] P
Green River Idyll, Utah. May 28-June 2. This canoeing odyssey retraces John Wesley Powell's 1869 route into the annals of history. The twisting Green River winds its way between sheer, colorful sandstone walls towering hundreds of feet above. Fully catered by a professional outfitter, this adventure gives us plenty of time to explore Labyrinth, Horseshoe, and Twin-Alcove Canyons. Enjoy a great combination of dayhiking and easy paddling. Canoe rental included. Leader: Constance Lederer. Price: $995; Dep: $100. [02202A]
Lake Superior's Apostle Islands, Wisconsin. June 12-18. Rich in Ojibwa history and tales of the fur trade, 22 islands make up this archipelago at the northernmost point in Wisconsin. Paddle along spectacular, sculpted sandstone cliffs riddled with sea caves, abandoned fisheries, and the largest collection of lighthouses in the national park system. We'll also hike trails in old-growth forests. The Apostles are home to great blue heron, beaver, otter, osprey, and eagle. Our reserved campsites offer a variety of beaches and forested sites. Leader: Faye Sitzman. Price: $895; Dep: $100. [02203A]
Painting and Paddling the Missouri River, Montana. June 23-29. Bring your sketchpads and hiking boots along on our leisurely paddle down 108 miles of the Wild and Scenic Missouri River, one of our new national monuments. We'll follow in the paddle strokes of explorers and artists, with time to paint the white cliffs and explore side canyons of the Missouri Breaks in search of elk and bighorn sheep. Canoe rental included. Leader: Constance Lederer. Price: $745; Dep: $100. [02204A]
Kayak the Glaciers: Prince William Sound, Chugach National Forest, Alaska. July 5-13. See Alaska & Arctic Canada section, p. 62, for trip description. Leaders: Tom McNicholas and Charlie Vincent. Price: $1,795; Dep: $200. [02024A]
Women's Northwoods Paddle and Portage, Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota. July 14-20. In this paddling haven, glacier-carved lakes reflecting pine forests are home to a plethora of wildlife -- loons, eagles, moose, walleye, and northern pike. We'll carry packs and canoes over historic voyageur portages, and paddle clear lakes and twisting streams. Camp, swim, fish, and cook as sunset brings opportunities for stargazing and campfire camaraderie. Expect invigorating physical challenges, beautiful northwoods scenery, and companionship with other mature women. Leader: Pat Long. Price: $845; Dep: $100. [02205A] E Q
Beginner's Sea Kayak Adventure, Tahoe National Forest, California. July 21-26. With Clair Tappaan Lodge as our home base, we'll learn to kayak on the beautiful waters of Lake Tahoe, one of the largest lakes in North America. Surround yourself with shore birds, blue waters, and Sierra mountains on this leisurely, pristine paddling adventure. Leader: Edna Trimm. Price: $795; Dep: $100. [02206A] C
Georgian Bay Kayak Adventure, Lake Huron, Ontario, Canada. July 27-August 3. Some call Georgian Bay "the Sixth Great Lake," others call it "the Sweetwater Sea," and just about everyone agrees this area is one of the premier sea kayaking destinations in North America. Over 60,000 islands are thickly scattered in azure blue water along a rocky shore. Join us as we explore this amazing landscape, swim in secluded coves, and snack on wild blueberries. Some kayaking experience required. Leaders: Leanora Kovacs and Faye Sitzman. Price: $895; Dep: $100. [02207A]
 Paddling in Thoreau's Path, West Penobscot Wilderness, Maine. July 28-August 3. Join us for this canoeing adventure along Thoreau's Maine Woods route. Follow the West Branch of the Penobscot River through prime moose-viewing habitat down Chesuncook Lake with breathtaking views of Mt. Katahdin. Our leisurely journey includes side trips to Lobster Lake and remote Chesuncook Village. No portages, although strong winds on the open lake can require physical endurance. Leader: Kevin McCarthy. Price: $745; Dep: $100. [02208A]
Seagull-Saganaga Loop, Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota. August 15-20. Starting at Seagull Lake, we'll cover 40 miles of this amazing wilderness, then follow the Canadian border on Knife Lake, finishing up on the Saganaga Lake corridor. Six days allow plenty of time to explore the streams and waterfalls we'll pass as we paddle this wild and beautiful chain of lakes. Portages are frequent but short. Experienced paddlers only. Leader: D. Rell Dean. Price: $945; Dep: $100. [02209A]
Kenai Wildlife Canoe Trails, Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska. September 8-14. See Alaska & Arctic Canada section, p. 63, for trip description. Leaders: Bill Shecket and Rod Hall. Price: $1,295; Dep: $200. [02031A] E
All the Way Down Upon the Suwannee River, Rorida and Georgia. October 6-19. Paddle 213 miles of unbridled beauty from Georgia to the Gulf of Mexico. We rest on white sand beaches and enjoy nights under the stars, gently warmed by the campfire. Born in the Okefenokee Swamp, this river is home to an abundance of wildlife. It's a magnificent waterway rising in the hearts of all who see it, and flowing through their lives. Kayak rental included. Minimum age: 18. Leader: Patrick Nichols. Price: $1,245; Dep: $200. [02210A]
Sea Kayak Tour of the Florida Keys. November 17-23. Enjoy island-hopping on fast-moving sea kayaks through crystal-clear water. Experience white sand beaches and exploding sunsets. We'll snorkel reefs, swim with dolphins, and dine on local seafood. We'll journey from Islamorada to Key West, stopping at Lignumvitae Key, the Dolphin Research Center, and Lea Key. Enjoy a full day in Key West, and discover why Hemingway made this his home. Kayak rental included. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price: $1,075; Dep: $200. [02211A]
Atchafalaya Swamp Family Canoe Adventure, Louisiana. November 24-30. See Family section, p. 79, for trip description. Leaders: Dabble Snyder and Kathy Kyker-Snowman. Price: adult $795, child $695; Dep: $100. [02230A]
Sea Kayaking the Florida Everglades. December 1-8. See 02435A, p. 74, for trip description. Leader: Greg Pflug. Price: $895; Dep: $100. [02212A] D E
Special Interest Icons Look for these icons to select a trip that's right for you. A Archaeology B Autumn Colors C Beginners D Birding E Fishing F Mountaineering G Music H Native American Culture I Pack Support J Photography K Seniors L Teens M Vegetarian Available N Vegetarian Only O Vehicle Support P Wildflowers Q Women  Youth Scholarship (See page 102 for details) (25) Sharon Churchwell Fund (See page 103 for details)
RELATED ARTICLE: Paddling the Pristine waters.
Paddling enthusiasts can thank the United States Congress for establishing the Wilderness Act in 1964, which, among other things, designated the immense and pristine Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) in northeastern Minnesota. Over one million acres in size, and extending nearly 150 miles along the Canadian border, this beautiful landscape is comprised of hundreds of lakes and rivers, and boasts 1,200 miles of canoe routes. The Sioux and Ojibwa Indians used the routes here for hundreds of years, as did French voyageurs (white fur traders), who canoed through this region to transport their furs and supplies.
A diverse and thriving assortment of plants and wildlife live here, including threatened and endangered species. Bald eagles, osprey, loons, moose, beavers, otters, deer, bear, martens, fishers, weasels, mink, and foxes are some of the most visible creatures; a timber wolf, bobcat, or lynx might be seen on rarer occasion.
Today, statistics from the National Wilderness Preservation System indicate that more people visit Boundary Waters than any other wilderness area in America. Because of this fact, protecting its natural beauty and limiting human impact on the land is an ever-present concern.