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Apostle Island (mis)Adventure


Apostle Island Visitor Center

As I was planning on living and working in Minnesota for the summer, I looked around for places to go and things to do. One place I stumbled across was the Apostle Island National Lakeshore. Trying to tackle this National Lakeshore in a weekend seemed like it would be cramming in a little too much. In order to give me more time to explore, I decided that when I was traveling home from Minneapolis, I would take a slight detour and stop at the islands for a couple of days before finally returning home.

Being the adventurous, cheap, and stupid person that I am, I decided that instead of taking a boat to any of the islands like a normal person, I would rent a kayak and paddle myself out there. This would give me a little more freedom once I got to the island anyway. Of course, I had never kayaked in my life, but I was able to convince myself that was irrelevant, and I would be able to handle it. I was also able to ignore that little things called a “scale” on a map which tells you how far apart islands are. Besides the worries of an inexperienced kayaker going onto Lake Superior by himself, I would also have everything I brought to Minneapolis with me (including my cashiers check from my earnings at my job during the summer). I was a little nervous about leaving all that stuff in my car, but somehow convince myself that it would be fine since Bayfield is a small town. And with that ominous introduction, you can plunge into the story.

The Plan

I planned on driving up the night before to Bayfield and spending the night on the mainland. The next morning I would take a kayaking safety course, and then kayak to Stockton Island in the afternoon. The next day I would kayak to a nearby island and explore that some. The final day, I would kayak back to the mainland, possibly stopping at an interesting island along the way. After getting back to the mainland, I would drive back home to Indiana and be home by 9 or 10. (Slight spoiler: things once again do not exactly go according to plan)

The Trip

Standard procedures for the trip. Wrote down quick notes during it and then elaborated it later.

Warning: I do not recommend going kayaking by yourself on Lake Superior and trying what I did. Please read my Closing Thoughts, for more on this.

Day 1: Traveling to the Islands
Day 2: Paddling to Stockton Island
Day 3: Paddling Around Stockton Island
Day 4: Heading back to the Mainland