Lake Superior Starter Course

Paddle Canada Level 1 Sea Kayak Skills

New to paddling? Interested to learn how to sea kayak this season? Well the Lake Superior Starter Course is for you! In this program you will learn more than what is usually offered in the Paddle Canada level one sea kayak skills course. In this two-day course you will learn valuable techniques to improve your paddling strokes, paddling skills and rescue skills, as well as journeying and seamanship.

Activities focus on safety and gaining paddling skills for day trips within a large bay or sheltered shoreline. Issues of mutual safety between paddling partners and judgments of sea conditions throughout the day and out of sight along the shore are included. Paddlers will deal with the concerns for packing a kayak and the gear necessary for a comfortable day trip and solving problems in the field. Paddlers should leave the course encouraged to continue learning with an awareness of their limitations.

You will leave this course with the skills and knowledge necessary to plan and execute daylong sea kayaking trips in sheltered waters on Lake Superior and protected coastal/inland waters around the world. Upon successful completion of the Superior Starter Course, paddlers will be awarded with the Level 1 Paddle Canada Sea Kayak Skills Certification along with some serious stoke for the sport of sea kayaking and Lake Superior!

2024 Course Dates and Locations:

This year we will be offering some programs closer to Thunder Bay in Neebing, Ontario which is a 35-45min drive south of Thunder Bay.

Upcoming courses:

June 1-2nd – Neebing – Little Trout/Cloud Bay (FULL)

July 11-12th – Neebing – Little Trout/Cloud Bay 

For the courses in Rossport we offer room and board packages with Nestled In Nature Bnb on Nicol Island. The perfect place to kick back and relax with a nice meal, sauna and campfire right on the shores of Lake Superior. Accomodation in one of the 3 bedrooms is $120-140/night and includes breakfast. Lunches to go $15/person and dinners can be prepared for $30/person. Both single and double occupancy are available and there are other accomodation options such as the Rossport Inn Cabins, Serendipity Gardens Café & Guest House, the Willows Inn and Yurt It Up North.

There is also a private campground in Rossport if you would prefer to camp in your tent.

Upcoming courses:

July 23-24th 2024 – Rossport – Nestled in Nature B&B

**Based on demand we can add more dates and offer full room and board or self catered wilderness camping options**

Please inquire for more information if you are interested in a course date that is not listed and we can do our best to accommodate.

There is also opportunity for Paddle Canada Sea Kayaking Level 1 and Level 2 Skills on these programs (stay tuned for 2024 dates):

4 day Porphyry Island Basecamp

3 Day Beginners weekend camping trips 

Rate Per Person
Trip Length
2 days
Max Group

* Price includes sea kayak, safety equipment, and top of the line gore-tex drysuit

** Prices are $300 if you decide to bring your own kayak

All prices are subject to 13% HST

Lake Superior Starter Course

Course Breakdown & Important Documents

Step #1:

First thing you will need to is click on the book now button to begin the registration process. Book Now

Please follow instructions carefully Here you will complete some forms with your personal information, along with medical/dietary and liability release forms.

Step #2:

Read the information below including the important hyperlinked documents at the bottom.

Day #1

Location: Meet at 9am at the decided location. Some courses will take place near Thunder Bay and some will take place in Rossport. The exact location will be communicated with you in advance by your instructors. Sometimes course location will change due to weather and other variables. We will cover basic forecasting for lake superior in detail, map/chart navigation, introduction to equipment, strokes and rescues. Be prepared for a full day on the water. We will spend the last hour planning our day trip for day #2.

Day #2

We will proceed to follow our planned day trip and decide a start and finish time on the 1st day of the course. We will have a full day on the water with time for lunch, snacks, and time to practice our strokes further along with a bit of exploration to help you gain some confidence to paddle sheltered bays of Lake Superior. Depending on the comfort level of the group and weather conditions during the course we may explore into slightly more exposed waters.

Course Contents:

The following skills are considered essential to day touring around coastal waters.

You will learn various technical and theoretical skills including:


· Progression strokes

· Turning strokes

· Bracing

· Draws

· Boat control

· Self and assisted rescues

· Tows


· Regulations

· On water signals and communications

· First aid and emergencies

· Kayaking equipment

· Heritage and environment

· Journeying and seamanship

Course Includes:

· National certification and registration with Paddle Canada

· Liability and Activity insurance

Meals (unless catered for in Rossport):

You are responsible for your meals during the course. We may paddle away from where we launch during the day on the water so make sure your lunch and snacks can safely be stored in your kayak.

Accommodation(unless catered for in Rossport):

You are responsible for your accommodation before, during and after the course hours.


I will have a vehicle to carry all kayaks and gear. Car pooling is encouraged amongst participants in personal vehicles for your transport to and from the course area.

Gear Included (Please inform us if you have any of this gear you will bring yourself):

· Sea kayak (min. 13 feet in length with two sealed bulkheads), spray skirt, paddle, and PFD

· Kayak safety equipment (whistle, bailing device, 15m buoyant line, and re-entry

device/paddle float)

· Immersion gear (drysuit/wetsuit/paddle jacket)

– Neoprene gloves/pogies and booties

– Dry bags 5-20L

– First Aid and Repair Kit

– Extra warm clothes

– Hypothermia Kit (emergency tarp, stove, sleeping bag etc)

Gear you will need to provide:

– Notebook/writing utensil

– Food and snacks

– Water bottle(s) 2-3L capacity

– Appropriate thin base and thermal layers top and bottom – non cotton (wool/polyester)

– Paddle clothing and footwear (neoprene booties are best but old runners with

wool/neoprene socks will work. we have some extra neoprene booties)

– Warm change of clothes and rain gear top/bottom

– extra socks and footwear (If using a drysuit please bring extra socks to wear over gortex drysuit built in booties between your footwear)

· Hat for warmth and sun

· Sunglasses

· Waterproof sunscreen

Important Documents:

Day Trip Packing List

Level 1 Paddle Canada Sea Kayak Skills Certification Outline

Sea Kayak Design and Outfitting Information

Sea Kayak Rescue and Stroke Training Videos

Drysuit Care Information

Relevant Lake Superior Weather Forecasting Links

Seamanship Triangle:

This is a useful tool to help make judgment calls for important decision making where you consider the human factors along with the weather, sea and terrain conditions to mitigate risks in the field.

Rate Per Person
Trip Length
2 days
Max Group

* Price includes sea kayak, safety equipment, and top of the line gore-tex drysuit

** Prices are $300 if you decide to bring your own kayak

All prices are subject to 13% HST

Please contact us at or 807-356-6785 if you have any further questions or need clarification of these details