i am going to the apostle island area mid june–and the symposium–ive never been there before–what r some of the must see and do things of this area—i will be taking one of the tours being offered by the symposium----thanks for the help—phil
The sea caves along the mainland are awful nice. They’re about 1/2 hour-45 minutes from Washburn, site of the symposium. The caves on Sand Island are cool too. It’s a short 3 mile crossing and an easy day trip. What ever you do check VHF weather report first and get on the water by 6 or 7 so your chances of no waves are good. This will allow you to play in the caves with your boat. Check out Bayfield. It’s a neat little town. Look me up at the symposium. We’ll be camping in an orange and yellow, Big Agnes tent. What tours are you going on? We live about an hour south of Washburn.
thanks for the info–i forgot the island—one of the intermediate tours–hope to see u there–thanks–phil----look for red valley aquanaut on a black dakota
Having fun around the Apostles
You'll have a great time at the Symposium. After spending the last 20 years messing around in the Bayfield County area, I'll happily give you a few activities, some paddling related (of course!) and some not. The Sea Caves off Little Sand Bay (best access is from Meyers Beach Road) are all they are cracked up to be. However, the caves exist because of the wave action from the northwest. Weather can blow up with little or no warning from that direction, so be very prepared.
Some of our favorite haunts are the sloughs (actually freshwater estuaries) that occur both on the shore and on three of the Apostle Islands: Madeline, Stockton and Outer. The ferry trip to Madeline is a hoot (don't miss Tom's Burned Down Bar) but the paddle out to Stockton is a great trip if you have time. The Bark River Slough, west of Cornucopia a few miles, has good protected paddling both in it and out to Bark Bay. Another well-known local paddling trip is the "Shipwreck Tour." The cold, clear water of Lake Superior is perfect for spotting the many shipwrecks that dot the coastline, especially north of Bayfield.
There is lots of good eating (and drinking) to be found nearby. Wild Rice Restaurant is building a national reputation for both its food and wine list. Maggie's in Bayfield is always a blast (hard to miss a place in Wisconsin with that many flamingos.) Big Water Coffeehouse has world-class coffee and fabulous baked goods and there is a little candy shop (it might even be called "The Candy Shop") in Bayfield that has lots of great stuff, including terrific toffee. There's great fish chowder at the Village Inn in Cornucopia and for a late night hangout, try Stage North in Washburn. There is a very strong arts community around Chequamegon Bay and the musicians tend to congregate there. Many of the musicians first came because of the famous Big Top Chautauqua (where the NPR broadcasts come from), located at Mount Ashwabay between Bayfield and Washburn.
The local area chamber and visitors bureau website is very good: http://bayfield.org/ One of the places they'll send you is on the orchard tour north and west of Bayfield; the view from Blue Vista Farms is matched only by the number of hummingbirds that buzz around their flowers. Finally, if you fish you've come to an amazing place. Instead of trying to explain, I'll paste in a website from the very talented local guide we use. Click on the tab for photos and check out all the beauties (including the 2009 link), especially the Lake Trout and Smallmouth Bass shots. Anglers come from all over the world to fish for Chequamegon Smallies and you'll be paddling right over them! Paddle on!
Sea Kayak Symposium
I also will be at the Symposium, and I signed up for the Stockton Island intermediate tour and the Mainland Sea Caves tour. I am coming up from Springfield, IL. Thanks for the information on the area. Hope to see you there.