The tour takes place in the “Indian Channel” near Felix’s marina and Gun Shop.

Other options for access to this area of the river include:

  • Odawa/Battle Point boat launch on the south bank of the river, located at the end of 144th Ave off Mercury Dr
  • Indian Channel boat launch on the north bank of the River, located at the end of 144th Ave (where 138th Ave turns into Garfield St and then into 144th Ave off Leonard St.)

The tour is completed as an out and back paddle. This allows the trip to be taken using only one vehicle making it more convenient. This also allows an open time frame as the kayaker can turn around and head back at any point. Some of this trip will involve paddling upstream. The difficulty rate is very low for paddling upstream in this area due to the slow current of the river.

Looking at a map of this area, notice what is happening to the Grand River as it approaches its destination in Lake Michigan. As the river makes one of its final bends the current slows near the mouth of the Grand River and water is backed-up and forced into multiple bayous. The conditions provided by this flooded river mouth create what are known as emergent wetlands, and sub-emergent wetlands.

The tour begins in Stearns Bayou. Stearns Bayou figured prominently in the early commercial development of the area. Around 1865 a float bridge was built over the bayou with a 150′ section which swung out to allow timber to be floated through enroute to the mills in Grand Haven. The Float Bridge at Stearns Bayou was named for a former governor of Michigan.

The property south of Stearns Bayou was acquired by Ottawa County Parks in 2019.