“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”

We are empathetic toward everyone’s unique experiences and the changes both individuals and society are being tasked with making in response to the novel coronavirus. Change is hard. What is easy is our unwavering commitment to providing safe and fun outdoor adventures. Safety, including sanitation, has always been important to us — we are simply adapting to this new hazard. Our goal of implementing these new measures is mitigating risk and protecting the health, safety, and well-being of our staff and customers as best we can. Thank you. 

Quote: Stephen Hawking 


What activities we can do now:

  • Tune-up, replace bike tubes and tires, and repair your bike. Bikes can be dropped off during regular business hours, or call or email to set-up a convenient drop-off time. We have most bike tubes sizes and a good selection of standard tires in stock and should be able to get you rolling relatively quickly — often while you wait. Repairs and tune-ups will require you to leave your bike. 
  • Take reservations for guided kayak trips. Even in a “normal” season, our day trip cancellation policy allows for refunds (minus a 3% fee if canceled more than 7 days before your scheduled tour or minus a 10% fee up to 36 hours before). Transferring dates to later in the season or 2021 will also be honored. Please note, although our cancellation policy does not typically allow for any refunds if the tour is less than 36 hours away, if you or members of your party have suddenly been impacted by the coronavirus, contact us. 
  • Gear rental for your own adventure. We have stand-up paddle boards (SUPs), both solo and tandem sit-on-top-kayaks, sit-on-top fishing kayaks, and tandem sea kayaks that can be rented (solo sea kayaks available if you are knowledgeable regarding wet exits). We also have fat tire, mountain bike, and gravel bikes that can be rented. Pick-up in Hessel or free delivery between St. Martin's Point and Beavertail

    (deliveries further afield will be charged a fee based on mileage).

The health and safety of both you and our staff have always been important.

  • We have reviewed and updated our policies in response to the novel coronavirus. Our risk mitigations are based upon recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) as of May 2020. We will continue adapting as the situation evolves.
  • Operations will align with advice from qualified health officials and the State of Michigan. As a tourist attraction, we also aim to operate with the support of Clark Township and the Les Cheneaux community.
  • We are also following paddling recommendations made by our industry group, the American Canoe Association (ACA). We are limiting trip participants to 10 with a maximum of two guides; we potentially can break a larger group into two or three smaller groups. Woods & Waters is an ACA member and staff regularly participate in professional development to improve personal knowledge and skills for the benefit and safety of our guests.
  • A hand washing station is available outside our shop. Hand washing for 20 seconds is the best method for removing dirt, bacteria, and viruses. Hand washing, combined with avoiding touching our faces and coughing or sneezing into our elbow, remain best practices for not transmitting illnesses.
  • Each boat cockpit will be equipped with a spray bottle containing sanitizing spray. Participants have control over spraying down kayak seats, cockpits, decking, combing, and paddles as they see fit. Hand sanitizer is also available inside the shop.  

Health Screenings

  • We will be on alert for the CDC-identified symptoms of exposure to the novel coronavirus: cough or shortness of breath/difficulty breathing; or at least two of these symptoms: fever (above 100.4˚ F), chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell. 
  • On-duty staff will be assessed daily. Staff who report or present symptoms will be required to remain off premises until cleared for return. Suspected COVID-19 cases and/or coronavirus exposures will be referred to county medical officials. We are a very small business making monitoring staff fairly easy.  
  • Any guests experiencing any known symptoms of COVID-19 and/or coronavirus exposure will not be allowed to join a tour. Woods & Waters reserves the right to screen for a fever. Tours can be rescheduled or a refund requested.

Personal Sanitation & Personal Protection Equipment

  • Frequent hand washing by staff is encouraged. 
  • High-touch surfaces at our shop will be disinfected regularly or as store traffic warrants (opening and closing).
  • Re-usable cloth face masks and disposable and/or washable gloves are provided to all staff. 
  • Staff will wear face masks whenever within 6 feet of other staff or guests (indoors or outdoors)
  • Guests are required to abide by current CDC recommendations and State of Michigan requirements to wear a mask indoors and maintain social distancing. In addition, guests are requested to wear a cloth mask during boat fitting, launching, and landings since staying 6 feet apart will be difficult or impossible.
  • If a guest does not have a mask, either disposable or re-usable cloth masks will be available for guest use. Following CDC guidelines, cloth masks will be washed in hot water, dried at high heat for 30 minutes, and stored in zip-top bags between use. Staff will follow this same washing protocol for their cloth masks.
  • In the unlikely event a guest were to capsize their kayak, neither staff nor guest will be required to use a cloth mask in order to best address water safety. 
  • Contactless payment transactions can be made by using our website or calling to make reservations. We are working on procuring a “contactless” card reader for in-store transactions.
  • Liquid hand sanitizer and a hand washing station will be available at our shop. Liquid disinfectant will be available on each participant's boat. 

Disinfecting Gear

  • All gear will have been disinfected prior to a tour or rental. 
    Kayak surfaces, such as cockpit combings, and SUP decks coming into contact with guests will be sprayed with a liquid disinfectant; paddles will be wiped with a sponge or cloth saturated with a disinfecting solution. Due to the nature of our outdoor activities, it is possible kayaks will have some sand or gravel in the bottom of boat cockpits.
    Bike helmets will be dipped in a disinfecting and de-odorizing solution between use. Bike seat and handlebars will be sprayed with a liquid disinfectant.
  • Upon tour check-in or rental gear pick-up, clients will be given disinfected personal safety gear.
    - Life jackets, spray skirts, removable sit-on-top kayak seats, SUP leashes, and wetsuits will be dipped in a disinfecting and de-odorizing solution between use. If possible, they will also be hung to dry in the sun.
    - Hangers used to hang gear will be dipped in a disinfecting solution
  • When gear is being hung inside for storage, or given to participants, staff will have either washed their hands, used hand sanitizer, or will wear gloves before touching hangers and/or gear.
    - If possible, subsequent tours or rentals for a given day will use different life jackets, spray skirts, wetsuits, and removable sit-on-top kayak seats.
    - Bike helmets will be dipped in a disinfecting and de-odorizing solution between use.
  • High-touch areas on gear will be disinfected regularly, including when being handed to guests (as feasible).
  • Disinfecting spray will be available for guest use on their hands or gear on kayaking trips.

Social Distancing Policies

  • Retail store will be limited to 4 non-social, group-related guests; our store is small — ask us to come outside! 
  • Maximum kayak tour group sizes are either 6 boats or 9 guests to one guide, whichever results in the fewest number of boats. (Larger groups are restricted to no more than 12, including two guide(s) before having to be divided into smaller groups with a slightly staggered departure time and/or different launch/landing location).
  • At kayak launch site, guests will be given disinfected paddles. Paddle length will be used to establish safe social distances during kayak instruction and beach safety talk.
  • Guests and staff are required to wear a cloth mask during boat fitting, launching, and landings since social distancing will be difficult or impossible.
  • Guests will launch and land in established social groups (family units, couples, etc.). 
  • Staff will remind guests about maintaining social distancing while paddling and inside retail store as needed.