Detroit River Kayaking

Detroit River Kayaking

Not for novices, this paddling trip combines views of wildlife and protected wilderness areas with awesome industrial architecture. (Detroit Free Press)

Kayaking along the Detroit River is not the unpleasant trip it may once have been. Thanks to 40 years of effort to reduce pollutants and improve habitat for wildlife, this urban river provides spectacular scenic paddling opportunities for experienced kayakers.

Detroit Free Press outdoors writer Eric Sharp and photographer Brian Kaufman set out with the goal of kayaking the entire length of the river in a day for this video story, which provides us a visual perspective of their city that most residents never get to see.

The 30-mile trip from Lake St. Clair to Lake Erie included strong headwinds, big waves and ocean-going freighter traffic. The kayakers were treated to spectacular industrial views along with sightings of great blue herons, geese, swans, hawks and ducks. The Detroit River may be the greatest kayak resource around, according to Eric Sharp.

CHANNEL: Detroit Free Press (

Length: 3:07

Video Production by Brian Kaufman
Additional Video by Gina Damron
Story by Eric Sharp