Lime Island - Paddlejunky? Did you go?

Hey there, I was checking out the archives doing some planning for an upcoming trip to the U.P. and saw that “Paddlejunky” was considering Lime Island.

I was wondering if you went or if anyone else has any other info on kayaking in that area that wasn’t already in the earlier post.

Also interested if anyone has any feedback on kayaking in the Les Cheanaux Island area.

Thanks much!

Lime Island
I had a great paddling trip to the Eastern U.P. last September, and am planning to return again this fall. However the trip to Lime Island didn’t happen. The day I set aside was too rough for me. I sat at the launch ramp at Rabar for about an hour debating on whether to make the crossing. I looked over the island through the binoculars and watched several freighters pass. The day I arrived in the U.P. a front came through and stormed severely for about an hour, the rest of the week I was dealing with an East-NE wind, which surprised me, but brilliant sunshine. I fell in love with Drummond Island, and had the township campground almost to myself in the beginning of the week, and completely to myself at the end. Paddling around Potagannising Bay was great. Harbor Island was one of the prettiest paddling destinations I have ever experienced. Whitney bay and out into Lake Huron was excellent. After my aborted attempt to Lime, I drove down to Hessel and circumnavigated several of the islands in the Les Chenaux group. Also found some fantastic informal National Forest (FREE) campsites in Search Bay, accessed by a National Forest road off the main road to Detour Village. You would need to bring your own water, or filter from Lake Huron. But they were “out of a magazine pretty,” and NO ONE was there in September. This year, job permitting, I am returning to Drummond to explore further. If the weather cooperates, I am going to try an overnighter from my base camp on Drummond, to Lime island, stay over, and return the next day. There are multi-mile open crossings but you can island hop much of the way. For some reason I am fascinated with the St. Mary’s river and enjoyed a day tracking freigters south from the Sault. Several places they pass very close to shore. I might explore more of that passage this year too from the yak. If you go to Drummond, stock up on groceries and gas on the mainland. The sole grocery/gas store robs you blind. If you need more detailed info on the Search Bay campsite, I can dig it up. I’m operating from memory here and don’t remember the Forest Sevice road number or the paved route number. It’s the one that runs from the four-lane east to Detour along the top of Lake Huron. Also, in September I launched for free from the swim beach in Hessel. Not sure if you can do that in-season. The U.P. really empties out after Labor Day. Everything was deserted but the weather was great. Locals told me the Michigan economy (auto jobs) and the high gas prices are killing their tourism. I believe it from what I saw.

Lime Island / U.P.
Thanks for all the info! Sounds like all-in-all it was still a great trip even without crossing over to Lime Island. I’ve known that feeling with waiting to do Pictured Rocks. After about 3 years, I finally got a break last year with conditions that were probably “once in a lifetime”. It was in July when temps were in the 90’s (yep, 90’s–in the U.P.! Not a typo). The lake was like glass the whole trip, it was amazing! Wasn’t as lucky with the trip back from Grand Island though. Yikes! But it made it interesting. Luckily it’s a short trip.

The places that you described are near where I’m planning to be, so again, thanks for the tips. I’m sure I’ll be checking out at least a few of the places you mentioned.

(Our gas prices are definitely not helping our state. For example, yesterday gas went from $2.89 to $3.19! But if you get out and enjoy it, it’s still a great place to be.)

Good luck with your next trip!