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White Crane Canoe Rentals & Guide Service reviews
A hidden gem! Found it by accident because our son wanted to kayak and it was the only rental place around. The surprise was the setting: absolutely gorgeous wildlife preserve with a cool water trail.... more »
This place is now called Cache Bayou Outfitters. We rented 4 kayaks for 4 hours, rather than do a guided tour. We arrived early enough that the guide let us listen in to the rules and tips that the.... more »
Mark is the best guide in southern Illinois! He's extremely knowledgeable of the surrounding outdoors and is an amazing survivalist. If you want to see a beautiful area of the country, and you want a friendly, intelligent guide, choose Mark and White Crane!
Cache Bayou Outfitters (formally White Crane Canoe rentals) is a non-profit canoe rental and offers guided tours of the Cache River. I would highly recommend a guided tour from Mark for anyone who finds themselves in the area. We came from Chicago to the Murphysboro IL area to visit Scratch Brewing and Big Muddy Brewing for the weekend. We also wanted to get some hikes in. I found Cache Bayou through a google search, and being ~45 minutes from Murphysboro, I wondered if it would be worth the drive there and back. Based on the good reviews I could find on trip advisor (under the white crane name - this is their first year operating as Cache Bayou)- I booked the tour, and I'm so glad I did! First - customer service wise - Mark was really accommodating. We were expecting heavy rain on Sunday morning, so I asked if we could switch our Sunday reservation to Saturday. No problem. We also added on two people last minute and Mark was great about it. When we arrived, there was another Cache Bayou employee (sorry! I forgot her name! it was unique) and she was very friendly while we were waiting to start up. Second - the actual tour - while I know you have the option to just rent kayaks and canoes, I'd highly recommend having Mark guide you on the water. He definitely leaves you on your own to enjoy and stops along the way to give you a better idea of the history of the area, the animals you'll find, plants, etc. It's a great balance and it's not too overwhelming where you'll feel like you're on a field trip with constant information coming at you. He has a great sense of humor and we really enjoyed learning from him. There weren't as many birds when we came (Early April) but we still enjoyed it. I'd recommend bug spray later in the season! We had a carp jump right into our canoe too which made for a lot of laughs. There is a toilet on site, but no running water, sawdust toilet - FYI!
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