top of page

Canoeing & Kayaking

The Lower Cache River offers an unforgettable experience through magnificent cypress-tupelo swamp for canoes, kayaks, and jon boats (10-horsepower limit). A public boat launch is located at the Lower Cache Access off Perks Road. The three-to-six mile canoe trail is marked with international canoe symbols and arrows and/or yellow stripes on trees. A highlight of the trail is the State Champion Bald Cypress Tree, which, like a number of other trees in the Cache River Wetlands, is more than 1,000 years old.

Three additional public boat ramps are located on Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge:

  • Cache Bend Access, on Morris Road, east of Sandusky, IL.
  • Old Cache Channel Access, off Route 51 and Redmond Road
  • Cache Levee Access, located off Route 3, south of Route 127

For more information on the above sites, see

Boat rental and guide services are also available from local vendors. Such as Cache Bayou Outfitters for individuals and groups, or the Land for Learning Institute for larger educational groups.

Free guided canoe tours are available to schools and other organized groups, courtesy of the Fish and Wildlife Service, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Shawnee Community College. Tours feature a three-to-six mile canoe trail through Buttonland Swamp, a National Natural Landmark, and highlight native plants and animals, the ecological value of wetlands and the cultural and natural history of the Cache. Canoe tours are typically offered on Wednesdays and Fridays, by advance reservation only, with a maximum group size of 24 participants. For more information visit Cypress Creeks Educators Page, or to make reservations, call Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge at 618-634-2231.

bottom of page