Road Scholar : Home
Canoeing and Kayaking Southern Illinois Wetlands and Lakes

Program Number: 17381RJ
Start and End Dates:
6/3/2013 - 6/6/2013; 10/20/2014 - 10/23/2014;
Duration: 3 nights
Location: Makanda, Illinois
Price starting at: $498.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Water Sports Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 8; 3 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 3 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Gluten Free    

The Cache River and its swamps hold closely guarded secrets waiting to be unlocked on this exciting, active canoe and kayak journey. Experience the diversity of the southern Illinois landscape while paddling on a scenic lake with clear, deep waters, towering sandstone bluffs and miles of uninterrupted shoreline. Choose to canoe or kayak or try your hand at both.




Highlights

• After a lesson on canoe and kayak techniques and water safety by paddling naturalist guides, venture into the wild to discover spectacular environments.
• Discover this region’s diversity of bird life from Bald Eagles to Prothonotary Warblers.
• Naturalist musician Curt Carter introduces you to the “Voices of the Cache” through his songs.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to 1.5 miles over uneven terrain. Canoeing up to three miles on flat water. All equipment provided.




Date Specific Information

10-20-2014

Enjoy the changing of the seasons with spectacular colors along the lakeshore.



Coordinated by Land for Learning Institute.




Makanda

The village of Makanda near Carbondale is a quaint gateway to Illinois’ Giant City State Park, known for its unique sandstone structures and popular among campers, hikers, rock climbers, horseback riders and boaters. The park and Makanda are both convenient to the Southern Illinois Wine Trail, premier golfing opportunities, fishing lakes and more.



Accommodations
Historic lodge located in the heart of Giant City State Park. One-room cabins with two double beds. Outdoor swimming pool.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Curt Carter

Curt Carter received a master’s in environmental education from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. He is the co-founder of the Land For Learning Institute and has more than 20 years experience leading canoe expeditions on rivers, lakes and swamps. He is a lead instructor for birding expeditions and a facilitator for Project Wild and Leave No Trace programs. Curt is also a musician who performs with an environmental message.
 
Alan Shearer

Alan Shearer received his bachelor’s in outdoor recreation from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. He is the co-founder of the Land for Learning Institute, is a Wilderness First Responder, and facilitator for Project Wild and Leave No Trace. Alan has over 15 years experience leading canoe expeditions on rivers, lakes and swamps and is also a lead instructor for birding excursions.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins
  Carbondale, IL 3 nights
 Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins
Type: Lodge
  Description: Found in the heart of the park is Giant City Lodge. Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s, it is in perfect keeping with the spirit of the park. Multi-hued sandstone and white oak timber were two of the native building materials used. The spacious and historic Lodge has a rustic beauty that creates an atmosphere found nowhere else in Southern Illinois. The Bald Knob dining room, with seating for 200, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily, with an excellent reputation for food and hospitality. You’re sure to enjoy some of the best fried chicken ever if you choose the specialty of the Lodge, our all-you-can-eat Family Style Chicken Dinner.
  Contact info: 460 Giant City Lodge Rd
Makanda, IL 62958 USA
phone: 618-457-4921
web: giantcitylodge.com
  Room amenities: 2 full beds, privte bath, television, outdoor swimming pool
  Facility amenities: Giant City Lodge has private rooms perfect for your special event, banquets, and meetings. The Lodge also features a historic lounge and bar, gift shop, and guest cabins for a quiet getaway. Outdoor swimming pool, numerous hiking trails, Visitor's Center nearby.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Additional nights prior: $69.00-$105.00 Make reservations with Giant City Lodge. Limited availability
  Check in time: 3:00 PM
  Additional nights after: $69.00-$105.00 Make reservations with Giant City Lodge. Limited availability
  Check out time: 9:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
4:00 p.m. You will be staying at Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins that night.
  End of Program:
10:00 a.m. You will be staying at Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
Free parking.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Carbondale, IL
  Nearest city or town:  Carbondale, IL
  Nearest highway: I-57
  Nearest airport:  Marion, IL
  From End of Program
  Location: Carbondale, IL
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

St. Louis, MO

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
B.A.R.T. Transportation
phone: 800-284-2278
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$60/adult reduced rate for children
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2.5 

 

Distance:

 

144 miles

   

Shuttle service arrives/departs from the Ramada Inn in Carbondale. You then need to arrange taxi service to Giant City State Park Lodge. Taxi Service phone number: 618-457-8122 and 618-457-8121.

 
Driving Directions
  Chicago, IL Take I-57 south to exit #54, Illinois Route 13. Go West on Route 13 approx. 15 miles to Giant City Road. Take Giant City Road South, approximately 12 miles, to Giant City State Park. Follow signs to Lodge/Restaurant for parking and check-in
  Indianapolis, In Take I-70 west to Effingham, Il. where you will pick up I-57 at mile #160. Take I-57 south to exit #54, Illinois Route 13. Go West on Route 13 approx. 15 miles to Giant City Road. Take Giant City Road South, approximately 12 miles, to Giant City State Park. Follow signs to Lodge/Restaurant for parking and check-in
  Kentucky Take I-24 west/north to I-57 (in Illinois). Go North on 1-57 approx. 7 miles to exit #54, Ilinois Route 13. Go West on Route 13 approx. 15 miles to Giant City Road. Take Giant City Road South, approximately 12 miles, to Giant City State Park. Follow signs to Lodge/Restaurant for parking and check-in
  St. Louis, MO Take I-64 east to Mt. Vernon, Il. where you will pick up I-57 at mile #95. Take I-57 south to exit #54, Illinois Route 13. Go West on Route 13 approx. 15 miles to Giant City Road. Take Giant City Road South, approximately 12 miles, to Giant City State Park. Follow signs to Lodge/Restaurant for parking and check-in.
Equipment Requirements: All equipment provided.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival/Introductions/Program Overview
(Monday, June 3)
   
 Arrive To: Check-in begins at 4:00 p.m. Dinner at 5:30 p.m.
 Dinner: Family style dinner in Lodge Restaurant.
 Evening: Introductions. Program overview. Short presentation on southern Illinois natural divisions.
   
Accommodations: Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Canoeing the Cache River Swamp
(Tuesday, June 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in Lodge Restaurant
 Morning: Cache River Wetlands: Voices of the Cache canoe trail....Join local singer/songwriter/naturalist Curt Carter as he gives a voice to the swamp through his trail interpretation and song entitled 'Voices of the Cache." Paddle past duckweed, button brush and 800 year old Cypress trees; one with over 200 knees. Prior to canoeing, staff will provide canoe instruction and safety, including paddle techniques, getting in and out of canoes safely and how to prevent a canoe from flipping over. Approx. distance is 2 miles on flat water (no rapids). A visit to the Interpretive Center will give background on the natural and cultural history of the wetlands. Eagles, herons, egrets, pileated woodpecker, wood ducks and owls are common ushers along the trail, along with the often sought after Prothonotary Warbler. A visit with the 1500 year- old state record Bald Cypress tree is always a highlight of this wetland paddle.
 Lunch: Picnic style lunch in the field
 Afternoon: Cache River swamp and visitor center continued.
 Dinner: Dinner in Lodge Restaurant
 Evening: Evening Owl Prowl. Presentation on owl behavior and adaptations prior to short hike to call in local owl species.
   
Accommodations: Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Canoeing and Kayaking on scenic lake, winery visit, and Evening Entertainment
(Wednesday, June 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in Lodge Restaurant.
 Morning: Watch for Eagles, herons and kingfishers as we paddle along sandstone bluffs and beneath towering pines on one of southern Illinois' scenic lakes. Approx. distance 2-5 miles on flat water with short interpretive breaks along the way. Kayaks are also available to paddle on this day---learn kayak paddling techniques and have the option to switch from canoeing to kayaking throughout the day.
 Lunch: Lunch along the shore of the lake.
 Afternoon: Optional excursion--Leave the water and head to local winery for wine tasting. Opportunity to meet with the vitner and purchase wine by the glass or bottle.
 Dinner: Dinner in Lodge Restaurant
 Evening: Evening music with a focus on bluegrass and folk music inspired by the natural world and intertwined with stories of life and adventure.
   
Accommodations: Giant City State Park Lodge and Cabins
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Morning Activity and Departures
(Thursday, June 6)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in Lodge restaurant.
 Morning: Morning Wildlife Walk or Pontoon ride after breakfast. Program will end around 10:30 am
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


You can't find a better value than Road Scholar.


As a not-for-profit organization, we are dedicated to providing all-inclusive educational programs at great value. From lectures to gratuities to field trips to accommodations - the tuition you pay up front is all that you pay.



Specifically, this program includes:

Plus these special experiences...

View the Daily Schedule to see more

And included with all Road Scholar programs:


© Road Scholar 2014 | Call toll-free: 1-800-454-5768