Kayak or Canoe the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway

People in two canoes paddle and point towards sightings on a river.
Family friendly paddling is found along many river stretches.


The St. Croix and Namekagon rivers offer many paddling options. Choose an easy stretch or one with challenges. Plan a day trip or a multi-day excursion. Find solitude or paddle in a more social setting. Whatever you choose, there are important steps to consider when planning a paddle.


Step 1: Choose a River Stretch

Trout Run Landing Closure:
Trout Run Landing, N72.0, north of Hayward, WI, will be closed starting Monday, August 19, 2019 for maintenance work to improve visitor safety and access. Please contacts outfitters for their alternative sections to float.


Step 2: Secure Paddle Equipment and Shuttles

  • Oufitters provide equipment and shuttle services throughout the Riverway. Many also provide shuttle services for paddlers with their own equipment.
  • Vehicles can be left in Riverway parking lots overnight, but keep valuables out of sight and remember to bring your keys with you!

Step 3: Get Permits & Find Out About Fees

  • If you are using a landing in a state park, you need a state park entrance sticker unless you are using an outfitter.
  • You will need a camping permit if you plan an overnight stay between Highway 8 and the High Bridge.

Step 4: Pack Your Gear

  • Make sure you have a life jacket for each person. Children under 13 are required to wear one.
  • A suggested packing list is on the safety information sheet.
  • Bring drinking water and suntan lotion.
  • Water shoes keep your feet safe from fish hooks, glass, and sharp rocks.

Step 5: Check Conditions


Step 6: Take River Safety Seriously

  • A life jacket only works if you are wearing it.
  • Make a trip plan and leave it with someone.
  • Call 911 for emergencies. Cell phone service is spotty on some stretches.
  • If you drink alcoholic beverages, do so responsibly.
  • More safety tips.

Step 7: Stay Healthy

  • Learn about tick borne illnesses and blastomycosis.
  • Poison ivy grows along the Riverway.
  • Don't drink the river water without filtering it first.

Last updated: August 15, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

401 North Hamilton Street
St. Croix Falls, WI 54024


(715) 483-2274

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