Explore the gorgeous and wild waters surrounding Richmond Island in this tour launching from our Crescent Beach location. This is a trip suitable for all skill levels!
- Adult Ages 18+
- Child Ages 13-17
- Private Trip Contact to book
A Five-Day Expedition to Paddle Maine’s Most Rugged Coastline
The easternmost region of Maine (known as “Downeast” because it’s typically downwind if you’re sailing) has a rugged, wild and gorgeous coast that makes it one of the most exciting areas for sea kayaking in the United States. As you move further east along the Maine coast, towards Canada, the tides become more powerful, the oceanside cliffs become more dramatic, the islands become more remote and the wildlife more abundant. This trip goes just about as far east in Maine as you can go. Greater exposure to open ocean and strong currents make this stretch of the coast somewhat more challenging for sea kayaking, creating all the more opportunity for adventure. Only a tiny fraction of visitors to Maine reach this sparsely-populated region, but it contains dozens of wonderful fishing villages and long stretches of stunning coastline that are only accessible by boat.
Where You’ll Paddle
This trip offers kayakers a chance to paddle a variety of our favorite areas along the Downeast coast, with possible destinations including Cobscook Bay, the Bold Coast, Machias Bay and the Great Wass archipelago. Conditions along this stretch of the Maine coast change quickly, so your guide will choose a destination each day based on what fits best with the weather conditions, sea state and tidal cycles.
You’ll spend all four nights camping on island campsites of the Maine Island Trail. These include some of the most wild and remote islands on the trail. As you island-hop through this region you’ll encounter gorgeous crescent beaches, towering lighthouses and fascinating geologic features. The coastline is sparsely populated along this coast, but you’ll paddle through at least one of the small harbors packed with lobster boats.
You’ll meet your guide and the other participants at our Portland site at 8am on the first day of the trip. After checking in and unloading anything you plan to bring with you, our staff will direct you to an area where you can park overnight. Then your guide will offer a brief overview of the itinerary, select a kayak for you, help you pack your boat and deliver a brief paddling lesson. Your group will then load into our van for the roughly 3-hour drive north to one of several potential launching sites, with a bathroom break along the way. Next, it’s time to hit the water!
We ask participants to pack a lunch for the first day of the trip, but after that all meals are provided, along with snacks and drinking water, tea and coffee. Portland Paddle also provides all the necessary kayaking gear and dry bags for packing your belongings. Tents are provided at no extra cost, though some people prefer to use their own. There is a small rental fee to use a sleeping bag and sleeping pad if you are not able to bring your own. Cold water paddling gear such as wetsuits and neoprene booties are also available for rent, and are recommended early in the season (May & June) when the water is still especially cold.
On the final day of your trip you can expect to arrive back at our main site in Portland by 6:30pm.
- Paddling along the stunning cliffs of the Bold Coast
- Observing abundant wildlife, including seals and seabirds; also a fair chance of whale sightings
- Visiting classic Maine villages where lobstering is a way of life
- Camping on some of the most remote and wild islands of the Maine Island Trail
- Well-rounded, delicious meals and snacks – two of each breakfast, lunch and dinner (pack a lunch for the first day)
- Kayaks and other paddling gear
- Dry bags for packing your belongings
- Licensed Maine sea kayaking guide with a deep knowledge of the region
Please Note: Tents are included in the cost of this trip, but we ask participants to either bring their own sleeping bags and sleeping pads or rent them from us for a small additional fee.
We require a slightly higher level of experience for this trip than we do for our shorter trips. However, you do not need to be an expert paddler to join. Since the group will paddle for several hours each day for 4 consecutive days we ask that each participant meet each of the following requirements:
- Prior experience with a multi-day paddling trip (could be canoeing, rafting, etc.)
- Prior experience paddling a sea kayak (sea kayaks are somewhat different than the “recreational” kayaks common on lakes and rivers)
- Prior experience completing a wet exit (capsizing in a kayak) and completing a capsize recovery (getting back into a kayak after a capsize)
- Ability to paddle at a moderate pace for several hours in one day (with plenty of island breaks)
- Ability to walk comfortably on uneven surfaces (such as following a short, rocky trail from a beach to a campsite)
- Comfort with tent camping
If you are lacking any of these requirements, we suggest signing up for one of our lessons or a shorter guided trip before booking this trip. That said, your guide will provide basic instruction, and there will be plenty of opportunities to improve your paddling skills along the way.
If you would prefer to book a private trip that is just for your group we would be happy to make that happen. A private trip allows your guide to customize the itinerary to fit the interests and experience levels of those in your group. It’s also a good option if the dates of our public trips listed on the calendar above don’t work for your group.
To get more information and request a private trip please submit the form on this page.