Kayakers will travel north once again to have some fun on the Au Sable and Pine Rivers. Bird watchers will go off on day trips to look for Kirtland’s Warbler, Upland Sandpiper, Clay Colored Sparrow and the dozens of other species that are found in the area. Accommodations will be at the Ralph A. MacMullen Conference Center located on Higgins Lake near Grayling. Lodging space will be shared with Mindy Walker’s bird watching group. Kayakers will travel Thursday evening in order to have a more relaxing day on Friday.
Bird Watching Itinerary : Mindy wants to leave with birders at 9 a.m. on Thursday. They will travel north making stops at favorite birding areas as they go along.
Thursday Evening, June 11 ………… Please arrive at the nature center by 6 p.m. We’ll make the 3.5 hour drive with a fast food stop along the way.
Friday, June 12 ………… We will paddle a stretch of the Au Sable River downstream from Grayling. The river is wide, clear and fast flowing with few obstacles. A sack lunch will be provided for us.
Saturday, June 13 …………. The South Branch of the Au Sable will be our destination for today. This stream is narrow but with only a few obstacles. It should be considered a fun float trip. The conference center will provide another sack lunch.
Sunday, June 14 …………… We will complete a 3 hr section of the Pine River during our return trip to the nature center. This river is more challenging with fast water, tight turns, and a number of obstacles.
Lodging : The conference center consists of many buildings for lodging as well as one where meals are served. The building where we will reside is called the Straits. Each room has twin beds. A bathroom is available for every two rooms. There is a common living area where a fridge, coffee maker, microwave, couches, tables, chairs and television are available for your use.
Meals: All food served out of the conference center is included in the price. Breakfast is served buffet style, sack lunches are consumed during day outings, and dinners are served family style.
Kayak Experience : You should be a skilled enough paddler to be able to control your boat in quick moving water. This is especially important on the Pine River.
Kayak Equipment : Sarett kayaks, paddles and floatation devices are available at no extra charge.
Choice of Trip : Please let us know which activity you are interested in when you send in your deposit.
Cost: $ 450.00based on double occupancy. Your paymentincludes transportation (Two of three vans are rentals.), three nights’ accommodation, all conference center food, river permits, day use parking fees, services of nature center leaders, and use of kayak equipment (if needed).
Deposit: You must pay a non-refundable deposit of $50.00 in order to hold a spot. Mail your check to Sarett Nature Center, 2300 Benton Center Rd., Benton Harbor MI 49022.
Cancellation Policy : Except for the deposit we will make every attempt to return money paid. This is made easier if we can fill your vacated spot.
Final Payment : Your final payment is due on May 1, 2015.
Warning!! : Space is very limited and these trips can fill in less than a week. Do not delay in sending your deposit.