Moonlight/Sunset Paddles

Unique Experiences on the Grand River

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“Though the sun had been lost long before, the water was illuminated still by the silver light of an enormous moon. The only sound came from our paddles as they pulled at the still water. The islands around us, eerie in the vague outlines of their silhouettes, seemed to float on the black water. Their tree-lined hills, stunning in the daylight, were majestic in the moonglow. Across the lake we could make out the warm glow of a distant fire.”
~ Distant Fires, by Scott Anderson ~

Paddling in ‘da moonlight….. If you like paddling on the Grand River during the daytime, you are almost certain to find that paddling at dusk and in the moonlight is a unique and truly peaceful experience. It’s an urban 3-mile reach from Riverside Park to Canal Park just north of Grand Rapids. Check it out. All trips launch by sunset (so that you can gradually adjust to the darkness) and are fully guided. You can also launch earlier if you’d like more of a sunset/twilight paddle. It’s entirely up to you. While we can’t predict what the cloud cover will be on a particular evening, there are several, May through October, evenings when the moon should be in various levels of illumination (depending on cloud cover). Six of these are full-moon nights. Consider a moonlight paddle for an experience that you will not soon forget. Or, on evenings where the moon isn’t visible, you can enjoy a Sunset Paddle if you’d like. Click here: Moonlight/Sunset Paddling to see what it’s like to paddle after the sun sets.

For Moonlight/Sunset Paddle Experiences – Please take note of the following:

  • Minimum 24-hour advance booking is required.
  • There is a maximum of no more than six paddlers per trip.
  • Plan to meet at and get picked up from Canal Park approximately 1/2 hour before sunset.
  • Alcoholic beverages are not permitted.
  • Moonlight/Sunset paddle experiences are not available on Saturday evenings.

Urban Moonlight/Sunset Paddle ~ Riverside Park North to Canal Park

This experience entails a southward trip down the Grand River into the north side of Grand Rapids. Ambient city lighting and traffic noises are to be expected on this urban trip, however the opportunity to enjoy the absolutely awesome skyline views of downtown Grand Rapids should more than make up for these minor distractions. If the water level allows, a quick side trip into the Riverside Park lagoon will add to this experience. Please note that getting out of your kayak or canoe at Canal Park can be a bit of a challenge at times (again depending on the water level of the river) but be assured that we will assist you as much as possible. At 3 miles, expect this paddling excursion to last approximately 1½ hours (depending on your float vs paddle times).

Click here to take a short video tour of this experience: Urban Moonlight/Sunset Trip

Urban Moonlight/Sunset Paddle Rate: $120 for 1 to 3 paddlers (not per person unless there is only one paddler) ~ Additional paddlers are $30 each ~ 6 paddlers maximum

Moonlight 2 Urban

 2018 Moonlight/Sunset Paddle Information:

~ Sunset Paddles – May 1 through May 17 (Approximate Sunset @ 8:50pm)

~ Flower Moon – May 18 through May 29

Friday, May 18, Sunset @9:02pm, 15% Illumination
Saturday, May 19, Not available
Sunday, May 20, Sunset @ 9:04pm, 37% Illumination
Monday, May 21, Sunset @ 9:05pm,49% Illumination
Tuesday, May 22, Sunset @ 9:06pm, 60% Illumination
Wednesday, May 23, Sunset @ 9:07pm, 70% Illumination
Thursday, May 24, Sunset @ 9:08pm, 80% Illumination
Friday, May 25, Sunset @ 9:09pm, 88% Illumination
Saturday, May 26, Not available
Sunday, May 27, Sunset @ 9:10pm, 95% Illumination
Monday, May 28, Sunset @ 9:11pm, 98% Illumination
Tuesday, May 29, Sunset @ 9:12pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – May 30 through June 15 (Approximate Sunset @ 9:20pm)

~ Strawberry Moon – June 17 through June 28

Sunday, June 17, Sunset @ 9:23pm, 23% Illumination
Monday, June 18, Sunset @ 9:24pm, 33% Illumination
Tuesday, June 19, Sunset @ 9:24pm, 44% Illumination
Wednesday, June 20, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 55% Illumination
Thursday, June 21, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 66% Illumination
Friday, June 22, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 75% Illumination
Saturday, June 23, Not available
Sunday, June 24, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 92% Illumination
Monday, June 25, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 95% Illumination
Tuesday, June 26, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 96% Illumination
Wednesday, June 27, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 99% Illumination
Thursday, June 28, Sunset @ 9:25pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – June 29 through July 13 (Approximate Sunset @ 9:20pm)

~ Buck Moon – July 15 through July 27

Sunday, July 15, Sunset @ 9:19pm, 11% Illumination
Monday, July 16, Sunset @ 9:19pm,19% Illumination
Tuesday, July 17, Sunset @ 9:18pm, 29% Illumination
Wednesday, July 18, Sunset @ 9:17pm, 39% Illumination
Thursday, July 19, Sunset @ 9:16pm, 50% Illumination
Friday, July 20, Sunset @ 9:16pm, 60% Illumination
Saturday, July 21, Not available
Sunday, July 22, Sunset @ 9:14pm, 78% Illumination
Monday, July 23, Sunset @ 9:13pm, 86% Illumination
Tuesday, July 24, Sunset @ 9:12pm, 92% Illumination
Wednesday, July 25, Sunset @ 9:11pm, 96% Illumination
Thursday, July 26, Sunset @ 9:10pm, 99% Illumination
Friday, July 27, Sunset @ 9:09pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – July 29 through August 13 (Approximate Sunset @ 9:00pm)

~ Sturgeon Moon – August 14 though August 26

Tuesday, August 14, Sunset @ 8:46pm,15% Illumination
Wednesday, August 15, Sunset @ 8:44pm, 25% Illumination
Thursday, August 16, Sunset @ 8:43pm, 36% Illumination
Friday, August 17, Sunset @ 8:41pm, 47% Illumination
Saturday, August 18, Not available
Sunday, August 19, Sunset @ 8:38pm, 67% Illumination
Monday, August 20, Sunset @ 8:37pm, 76% Illumination
Tuesday, August 21, Sunset @ 8:35pm, 84% Illumination
Wednesday, August 22, Sunset @ 8:34pm, 90% Illumination
Thursday, August 23, Sunset @ 8:32pm, 96% Illumination
Friday, August 24, Sunset @ 8:30pm, 97% Illumination
Saturday, August 25, Not available
Sunday, August 26, Sunset @ 8:27pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – August 27 through September 11 (Approximate Sunset @ 8:15pm)

~ Harvest Moon – September 12 through September 24

Wednesday, September 12, Sunset @ 7:57pm, 11% Illumination
Thursday, September 13, Sunset @ 7:56pm, 19% Illumination
Friday, September 14, Sunset @ 7:54pm, 27% Illumination
Saturday, September 15, Not available
Sunday, September 16, Sunset @ 7:50pm, 47% Illumination
Monday, September 17, Sunset @ 7:48pm, 56% Illumination
Tuesday, September 18, Sunset @ 7:47pm, 66% Illumination
Wednesday, September 19, Sunset @ 7:45pm, 75% Illumination
Thursday, September 20, Sunset @ 7:43pm, 83% Illumination
Friday, September 21, Sunset @ 7:41pm, 90% Illumination
Saturday, September 22, Not available
Sunday, September 23, Sunset @ 7:38pm, 99% Illumination
Monday, September 24, Sunset @ 7:36pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – September 25 through October 10 (Approximate Sunset @ 7:20pm)

~ Hunter’s Moon – October 11 through October 24

Thursday, October 11, Sunset @ 7:06pm, 7% Illumination
Friday, October 12, Sunset @ 7:05pm, 16% Illumination
Saturday, October 13, Not available
Sunday, October 14, Sunset @ 7:01pm, 33% Illumination
Monday, October 15, Sunset @ 7:00pm, 42% Illumination
Tuesday, October 16, Sunset @ 6:58pm, 52% Illumination
Wednesday, October 17, Sunset @ 6:56pm, 62% Illumination
Thursday, October 18, Sunset @ 6:55pm, 72% Illumination
Friday, October 19, Sunset @ 6:53pm, 80% Illumination
Saturday, October 20, Not available
Sunday, October 21, Sunset @ 6:50pm, 93% Illumination
Monday, October 22, Sunset @ 6:49pm, 97% Illumination
Tuesday, October 23, Sunset @ 6:47pm, 98% Illumination
Wednesday, October 24, Sunset @ 6:46pm, 100% Illumination

~ Sunset Paddles – October 25 through October 31 (Approximate Sunset @ 6:40pm)