Kayak Morris Gives Kayaking, Outdoor Camping, and Glamping Escapades for Illinois Couples

The Quick Version: Janee Matteson had constantly adored recreations and also the outside, but the woman home town of Morris, Illinois, found along a number of figures , had few opportunities getting on the water in human-powered watercraft. Therefore she launched Kayak Morris, a small business that gives canoe rentals, two levels of led tours, and inexpensive coastline hiking. The experience organization also provides glampouts, which provide a very luxurious camping knowledge for those who are a new comer to the outside. Just one hour from Chicago, Kayak Morris is the best place for an adventurous daytime big date or a nature-inspired instantly getaway.


Raising up in Morris, Illinois, Janee Matteson enjoyed recreations together with out-of-doors, but she was constantly surprised that her home town, which has three waterways running through it, lacked any possibilities for kayaking or using other human-powered watercraft.

Janee studied sporting events medication in college, and even though she liked helping men and women as soon as she began in the field, working inside throughout the day easily turned into dreary and unchallenging. Very, this year, she encountered the concept to start Kayak Morris: a business enterprise to supply canoe rentals and guided trips.

“My hometown constantly had the nickname River City, nevertheless was actually constantly used for pontoon boats and fishing boats for sale,” she stated. “its a functional lake, so we have actually industrial barge site visitors as well, but never ever any human-powered watercraft.”

She changed by using the release of Kayak Morris. And over time of achievements, she purchased a system of land and included wooded, beachfront campgrounds — excellent for an overnight escape for adventurous lovers.

Extraordinary stores for Memorable Experiences

Kayak Morris is distinctively located along three waterways: the Illinois River, the Mazon River, plus the Illinois and Michigan Canal.

“The Mazon River is different since it is the actual only real waterway where in fact the state non-renewable — the tullimonstrum — is found,” Janee stated. The river has numerous traditional beds, which have been strange due to their fast formation. Meaning the beds preserved both tough and smooth areas, developing a definite traditional kind.

The Mazon additionally does not allow energy or motorized ship site visitors as it’s therefore shallow, rendering it a great location to kayak.

The I&M Canal, which will be accessible from Kayak Morris web site, can an important waterway because it launched during the 1800s and was the primary method for carrying products prior to the damming regarding the Illinois River. Few kayaking companies are fortunate become situated close to the convergence of many various waterways.

The campsite normally on a unique block of land; its a wooded beach, that will be surprise look in Illinois. Partners in the Chicago location can be surprised locate that simply an hour off the town — plus less from a number of the suburbs — is actually a soothing i’m all over this a quiet beach which provides the chance to kayak through several streams.

Leases for Exploration and led Tours

At Kayak Morris, you’ll lease a canoe to understand more about the encircling place on your own — or with someone special — you can also embark on a led tour. The organization offers two types of tours, depending on the amount of canoing knowledge. You’re the newbie concert tour, in fact it is a couple of hours long and perfect for people who have never kayaked prior to.

Heightened kayakers — or individuals who wish a prolonged adventure — can pick one of the two premium trips, which final to four-hours. The Four Rivers Tour requires kayakers over the Illinois and Michigan Canal, the Dupage River, the Desplaines River, therefore the Illinois River with an end for lunch. The other advanced tour will be the Starved stone journey, which requires daring singles or lovers on a trip starting at the Starved stone county Park.

The concert tour provides incredible views of canyons and more that cannot be viewed by climbing. Each concert tour is led by techniques who’s concentrated on both storytelling plus security.

There are two main options at Kayak Morris: single kayaks or combination kayaks that hold-up to three men and women. “The combination kayaks tend to be much more stable than a canoe; it’s nearly impossible to point over a tandem kayak,” Janee stated.

Because undertake water, you will likely observe local sex animals, such as for instance turtles bald eagles, fantastic blue herons, great US pelicans, egrets, owls, kingfishers, and crazy turkeys, mentioned Janee.

Inexpensive Camping directly on the Beach

In inclusion to fun in the h2o, Kayak Morris comes with wooded beachfront campsites where you can pitch a tent and camp out before or after the canoing activities. No RV hiking is permitted, you could park the car very close to the tents.

“the campsites are well-liked by individuals, couples, singles — anyone interested in out-of-doors,” Janee stated. “we aren’t a pull-off-the-highway-and-camp-for-the-night type destination.”

Janee said that, when she very first brought kayak leases and educational tours toward location, interest in instantly rooms adopted easily. “We were cooperating with many childhood teams, especially lookout teams, and additionally they wanted to remain overnight,” she mentioned. “The only spot i really could recommend had been circumstances park in town that you’d need certainly to park at and hike all your gear within 1 / 2 a mile. Lots of teams don’t want to do that. Thus I purchased some area right on the lake, and right next to another state playground.”

She bought the area for Kayak Morris in 2012 and gradually turned it into a campsite around next couple of years. She chose the storyline for the distance to several waterways as well as its exotic, wooded coastline. “It provided groups the opportunity to stay instantly, looked after attracted consumers from a bigger geographic region,” Janee said. “they were able to not simply kayak throughout the day, however they may also stay over night and wouldn’t must take a trip back into wherever they name house.”

Tent camp charges are merely $8 per person, rendering it an easily affordable escape for lovers. Baths are available at Morris Community children’s pool just a mile away, and, should you decide forget about everything, stores are just down the road.

If you’re looking accomplish more than simply canoe and loosen up throughout the coastline, other pursuits in the region feature geocaching, walking, cycling, and angling, Janee said.

Most of the people exactly who arrived at Kayak Morris are not natives, Janee stated, but they are through the Chicagoland location. “we are very easy to get to; people don’t have to head to Wisconsin or Michigan for a little getaway. This can be like a staycation,” she mentioned.

Glampout Events Help People Ease Into Camping

Not everybody is into rugged backyard hiking, pitching camping tents, or making fireside meals themselves. That is why Kayak Morris hosts distinctive 24-hour glampout — or attractive campout — activities as a great and convenient alternative. “With glampouts, my mission is to obtain people outdoors exactly who if not would not go outside,” Janee stated.

For glampout events, the Kayak Morris personnel puts up and requires straight down camping tents for friends, plus they provide asleep cushions to make the hotels more content. Therefore the staff places seats for individuals to unwind in, earns wood, starts the campfires, and keeps them going.

Kayak Morris also acts a potluck meal and displays a movie outside during glampouts, you could also spend time of the campfires if you want to unplug from innovation. Each morning, the staff acts break fast with stuff like sausage, eggs, pancakes, good fresh fruit, pastries, and Starbucks coffee.

A two-hour guided newbie kayak concert tour can added to a glampout bundle. Addititionally there is sufficient time to hike, fish, read, or just relax. Janee mentioned the package is great for an individual who willn’t want to camp alone, or a couple of or family who would like to take pleasure in the outside in more convenience, letting them pay attention to relaxation and fun rather than strategies.

Next beingshown to people there for Kayak Morris is actually starting an extra place to carry much more offerings for outdoor-loving lovers in Midwest.

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