I am planning to Kayak from St.Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, to Lake Champlain (Vermont/New York states),and back in June. I’m figuring ‘at least’ two weeks to do this, but am open minded about it taking longer… Does anyone have experience with the border patrols and what all is involved?
Also, if anyone has done this trip and has any useful tips to pass along; camp sites, B&Bs, do’s & don’ts, etc. I’d be ‘very grateful’. I’ve already ordered the Kayaker’s Guide to Lake Champlain.
Paddling across border
The important thing to remember is you MUST declare yourself at a legal port of entry so as not to be in the United States Illegally. If you are a Canadian citizen it can be a big problem if you don't. If you are a US citizen it can land you with a big fine if you don't declare yourself.
I would try and contact the US Port of Entry (POE) that is closest to where you plan on crossing the border or the POE closest to where your first US takeout is. I would also contact the Border Patrol station that is closest to where you are planning on crossing to discuss any issues.
I am not sure of the Canadian rules but I am sure they are similar. The RCMP handles a lot of that.
It should be pretty painless as long as you follow the rules.
dont forget …
…a valid passport. Regardless of your reason to enter US, you’ll need a valid passport. Border patrol never had a sense of humor and since 9/11 and illegals sneaking in from Mexico , they have less now. I’m assuming your trip is a round trip and not a 1-way…2 weeks seems very optimistic for such a trip . There will no doubt be plenty of time consuming portages and weather delays. have you got any details worked out yet ? like a roughed out route ? maybe posting a roughed out plan will trigger some responses.