Challenging Mid-Section Trip

We offer a "Mid-Section" trip for those who want the faster, most challenging part of the river, but don't necessarily want or have the time to do the Wolverine (5 hr.) trip, and/or wouldn't mind skipping the last 1 1/2 hrs. of the river (which is the easier section, has more homes/cottages, and at peak times more congested with rafts and tubes). This trip ends at N. White Rd, which is the most commonly used put-in point (and which we own). This trip is definitely for more advanced paddlers!
Mid-Section Trip Pricing
Put-In/Take-Out Approx. Float Time       Kayak Rate/Person       Tandem Kayak Rate/Person       Cat/Big Green/person
Rondo to N. White Rd 2-2.5 Hours +/- $49 $39 $41
Wolverine to N. White Rd        3.5 Hours +/- $52 $42 $44

"Haul-it-Yourself" Rentals



This program provides an excellent opportunity for you to rent an aluminum Canoe, Solo or Tandem “Sit-In” Kayak, or Tube (sorry, no Old Town Canoes, “Sit-on-Top” Kayaks, Rafts, Cats, DELUXE Tubes, or COOLER Tubes) and transport it yourself to and from a nearby lake, beach, or stream. Canoe and Kayak rentals come with paddles & lifejackets. Equipment must be rented and/or returned between the hours of 8:30 am and 7:00 pm. Requires signed, open-ended credit card slip for security equipment deposit. Prices are per watercraft.

24 hours $40; 2 days $69; 3 days $79; Monday-Friday $99; Full week (7 days) $129.

“Haul-it-Yourself” tube rentals are available for $18 per tube, due back by 10am the next day. If you just need to rent a lifejacket or paddle, the rates are: paddle=$9, kayak paddle=$12, lifejacket=$9. Area delivery to cottage or house available for an additional fee.


Spotting/Shuttle Services



We can provide transportation for guests and their privately-owned equipment (Canoes or Kayaks). Trips depart with our regularly scheduled trips and are based on availability. The rates help us with: continual river maintenance and cleaning (we easily put in over 100 hours per year), and maintenance of the put-in / access points. We own the most commonly used put-in/take-out, we have a commercial lease w/ 3 state-owned access points, our drivers have medical cards, chauffeur's and/or CDL driver's licenses, all of our vehicles and trailers are commercially licensed and insured, use of our facilities/changing rooms/restrooms, and last but not least, we have over 30 years worth of knowledge and experience regarding all aspects of the Sturgeon River (current water levels/conditions included!). Spotting Rates: are per boat and include maps & transportation to the starting point.


Spotting/Shuttle Pricing
Put-In Point Approx. Float Time Private Canoe/Tandem Kayak Private Solo Kayak Rate w/ Guest's Vehicle* Departure Times
N. White Rd 1.5 Hours +/- $36 $20 $20 9:00-5:00 (every 0.5 hours)
S. White Rd 3 Hours +/- $45 $27 $30 9:00-3:30 (every 0.5 hours)
Rondo Access 4 Hours +/- $48 $30 $35 9:00-2:30 (every hour)
Wolverine 5 Hours +/- $52 $33 $40 9:00-11:30 (every hour)
Trowbridge Rd 7-8 Hours +/- $57 $36 $45 Please Contact Us


The "Private Solo Kayak" rate is the rate per kayak if there are 2 or more kayaks, or if 1 private kayak is with a group of rental guests. To spot just 1 "Private Solo Kayak" all by itself, (and not with a group of rental guests), then the rate is the same as the "Private Canoe Or Tandem Kayak" spotting rates.



*Advantages of using Guest's vehicle: costs less as we don't use as much fuel and saves time as you only have to unload your equipment once. Unfortunately, during the busiest peak times, spotting using YOUR vehicle is not available.


Sturgeon River Overnight Trip



Although most of our trips are just day trips, we do have one trip on the challenging Sturgeon River, which can be divided into two days. Starting at Trowbridge Road, the whole trip consists of approximately 7-8 hours of paddling. The first day begins with a good "warm-up" section and ends approximately 3½ hours later after running some drops created by old dams as well as some light Class I-II rapids over bushel-size rocks. You can then set up camp along the river at Haakwood State Forest Campground.



With 18 primitive campsites, Haakwood State Forest Campground offers handicap-accessible vault toilets, hand water pumps, picnic tables, and fire rings (for detailed information about the campground, please see our page dedicated to area campgrounds under "Lodging"). Relax by your campfire under the stars while listening to the bubbling stream and preparing for the next day's adventure. The second day consists of about 4½ hours of winding, narrow and more challenging water until you end at Burt Lake State Park (see information on parking under our "River Info" page).



Trip Tips: We recommend you set up camp before you start your river trip. This way, you can avoid taking sleeping bags, tents, etc. with you on the river and we recommend waterproof bags for anything you do take with you (there's approximately an 85% Tip-Over rate on this trip!) On the day of your trip, everyone in the group should be at Big Bear Adventures 45 minutes before the departure time; this allows time for paperwork and equipment loading. We then transport all equipment and participants to the starting point, which is Trowbridge Rd. At least one of your vehicles will be left at Burt Lake State Park (which is the ending point), so that it will be there for your when you finish your trip.



Below are the rates for renting our equipment. Please note these prices are per person.


Overnight Pricing
Kayak/Solo Per Person


For those with your own equipment, please see our "Spotting/Shuttle Services" paragraph above.


Pigeon River Trips



Flowing through the heart of the Pigeon River Country State Forest, the Pigeon is one of Michigan's most beautiful and remote rivers (and home to the largest free roaming Elk herd this side of the Mississippi River!) However, the remote sections and fast current make this river a poor choice for inexperienced paddlers. Though the Pigeon River is not the main river that we service, we do occasionally offer special paddling trips. The Pigeon River is a very narrow, winding stream that is swift and challenging at times and not regularly cleared, great for "die-hard" wilderness paddlers. Please Note: Low water levels can affect the enjoyment of this trip. There are numerous portages and a few rather large beaver dams to contend with. It takes a certain kind of person to enjoy this kind of challenge. Rates are per boat (unlike all other rentals which are per person), with a maximum of 3 people in a canoe and 1 person in a kayak, and canoes are aluminum (sorry, no Old Town's). Please Note: These Prices are per boat, and are the same price regardless of whether you choose to take the approximate 3 hour trip (Red Bridge to BB Bridge) or the approximate 4 hour trip (Red Bridge to M-68).


Pigeon River Pricing
Boat Quantity Canoe Rate Kayak Rate
1 Boat $64 $49
2-3 Boats $59 $46
4+ Boats $54 $42

Overnight Trips

Pigeon River Pricing
Boat Quantity Sturgeon River Valley Dr. to M-68- Canoe Sturgeon River Valley Dr. to M-68- Kayak Sturgeon River Valley Dr. to Mullett Lk- Canoe Sturgeon River Valley Dr. to Mullett Lk- Kayak
1 Boat $110 $75 $125 $90
2-3 Boats $100 $70 $115 $85
4+ boats $80 $65 $105 $80


As mentioned above, these trips can be difficult and are not part of our regular trips offered. The starting point is quite a distance (traveling mostly down dirt roads), the equipment takes quite a bit of abuse, but some paddlers really like this type of true wilderness trip. If you're one of them, then call ahead as we do require reservations well in advance for these special trips.