Sue

Sue

Beware that Sue will gladly take you down every back road seen on a map to find out what's there. Sue holds a Bachelor's of Science degree from Aquinas College with majors in Geography, Communication Arts, and Studio Art which doesn't really explain anything other than she loves to learn, is curious, and can sort-of read a map. She also attended Kendall College of Art and Design to study graphic design and operates a small design and photography agency. Sue enjoys reading nonfiction books about nearly every topic and is never short on random knowledge to share. She also makes killer oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. An avid photographer (who shoots with a Nikon, Fuji, and DJI), she will nearly always stop to take a picture.

ACA Level 2 Instructor
ACA Level 2 Trip Leader
ACA Level 2 Skills
Wilderness First Responder (NOLS)
Appalachian Bike Institute (ABI) Immersion Course
 

Tim

Tim

Although a Michigan native, Tim initially caught the paddling bug on Tennessee whitewater before becoming an avid coastal kayaker. BCU and ACA trained, Tim has toured many spots in the Great Lakes, Alaska, Baja, Labrador, and Baffin Island. Never one to turn down an adventure, he has also rafted down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon, canoed (and fished) in Ontario’s Quetico Provincial Park, and explored New Zealand. A former engine engineer with General Motors in Nashville, Tim is now retired and enjoys exploring with his teardrop trailer, whatever bike fits the terrain, and either a kayak or Kruger canoe. In 2022 he rode his gravel bike for 100+ days from Seattle to Banff, Canada and then down the Great Divide Mountain Bike Trail to Antelope Wells, NM. Besides guiding with us and introducing people to kayaking, he enjoys wintering in Baja, Mexico, IPAs, and pasties. 

BCU Coach Level 3
BCU 4 Star Proficiency Award
ACA Level 3 Skills
ACA Level 2 Trip Leader
Wilderness First Aid
Swiftwater Rescue
Biked Park Tool Advanced Mechanic Course

Mary

Mary

"All things outside" is Mary’s mantra. A Michigan native, Mary spent many of her adult years in California hiking and backpacking the Sierra’s with her family, participating in triathlons, biking throughout the state, and camping up and down the Pacific coast. Returning to Michigan, Mary has been paddling the Les Cheneaux for almost twenty years — often with her husband Jim. Mary can usually be found paddling either her kayak or SUP most summer days. If not on the water, she can be found in her garden, on a beach rock hunting, taking pictures (mostly of her grandkids playing outside), or baking up something good to go with a cup of coffee.

ACA Level 2 Trip Leader
ACA Level 2 Skills
First Aid & CPR

Brian

Brian

Brian works downstate in the technology field, however his college major was Political Science at Aquinas College and he loves engaging conversations on a wide variety of topics. He is constantly in search of great things to eat and drink whether at home or on an adventure. This desire has lead to a passion for cooking and whiskey (rye bourbons!) which is counterpointed by his weakness for enjoying Miller High Life (in a bottle). When not seeking out the next adventure, gustatory or other, he can be found puttering around the shop. Brian enjoys bicycling and is the weekend bike mechanic. He also enjoys the planning and logistics aspect of the business, as well as improving efficiencies.

Biked Park Tool Advanced Mechanic Course

Joe

Joe

Love for the outdoors has been Joe’s tagline for many years. This southern Ohio native got his start in a ‘yak in the mid-‘70s creeking whitewater in Tennessee and Kentucky before heading north with an 8-year stint with the US Coast Guard. The big lakes inspired him to jump into a sea kayak where he’s been paddling for the past 30 years — mostly in lakes Superior and Huron. Joe also loves hiking and has explored most of the North Country Trail in the UP. Joe can also talk rock climbing or photography, but his eyes light up when you inquire about blacksmithing. He makes all sorts of things, from the decorative to the practical for people all over Northern Michigan.

ACA Level 2 Trip Leader
First Aid, CPR, AED

Angela

Angela

After discovering an old plastic kayak left behind by her home's previous owner in the Soo, Angela began paddling in Lake Superior. She soon made her way down to the Les Cheneaux, took several tours with Woods & Water Ecotours (the predecessor to Woods & Waters) and became completely hooked on sea kayaking. She then bought her first "real" sea kayak, a Valley Nordkapp, and began taking lessons to avoid regularly finding herself in an upside-down boat. She's since taken several guided multi-day kayak camping trips in the Apostle Islands, Michipicoten Bay, and Isle Royale. However, even after all those "big water" adventures, she'll admit that her first solo paddle in the Les Cheneaux resulted in getting lost. Angela no longer gets lost in the LCI and fell in love with the area so much that she now spends her summers living on her boat in Hessel Harbor with her partner and dogs (Matey and Skipper).  
 

Garrett

Garrett

Being Sue and Brian's son, Garrett has been along for the ride of running a kayak shop from the get-go — learning paddling skills, how to repair kayaks, and day-to-day operations. During the summer, he works here interacting with customers and as an assistant kayak guide, but his primary job is as a prep cook for the Les Cheneaux Culinary School's restaurant (4th year doing so; he's also the lead cook for their summer Coffee Shop). His hobbies are numerous from downhill skiing and swim team to miniature horse driving and working the light board for drama productions. He enjoys chemistry, cooking, cleaning, gardening, chickens, and learning.  

First Aid, CPR, AED

Sarah

Sarah

Sarah has maintained a lifelong curiosity about what nature has to offer. She has worked for the National Park Service, Illinois State Museum, two environmental education centers, and rounded out her full-time career with 28 years at the Kalamazoo Nature Center as an Interpretive Naturalist and Conservation Educator. She continues to love teaching how to enjoy the natural world to people of all ages. She has also founded a women-only adventure group which teaches outdoor skills and builds confidence for women who might never have enjoyed outdoor adventures growing up. With them, Sarah has guided many kayaking, canoeing, backpacking, and hiking trips. With her husband Wil, she has also traveled and hiked extensively, often with their dog Lily.

Certified Interpretive Guide
Certified Heritage Interpreter
Wilderness First Responder