AuSable National Scenic River
The portion of the AuSable, which was designated a
National Scenic River on October 4, 1984, begins one mile
below Mio Dam and ends at the U.S. Forest Service Bridge.
The average water depth is from 1 to 3 feet. The current
is gentle, no rapids
or "white water". The river winds through mile after
mile of unspoiled wilderness with deer, beaver, ducks,
otter, wild mink, bald eagles and other wildlife.
Paddle With Nature at Hinchman Acres in the paddlesports equipment of your choice.
The AuSable is rated as one of the most famous rivers in the world.
Hinchman Canoe Livery, established in 1943, is one of the oldest and largest paddlesports operations in the state of Michigan. Our service "in a class of its own" has been pleasing people for over 60 years.
Hinchman rents canoes, kayaks, rafts and
Hinchman Acres is not a campground - there are campgrounds in the area 5 minutes away - campgrounds on the river are for overnight trips only and we have no jurisdiction over these campsites.
Camping maps are available.
Grayling to Alcona Dam are on a first come, first serve basis - below Alcona Dam you need to reserve sites from the U.S. Forest Service - 989-826-3252.
Canoes are 17 ft aluminum and are safety approved by the State of Michigan. No group too large or too small. All of our canoes have seating for two people. A third person in the canoe will sit on a cushion in the middle. Canoes can accommodate a family of 2 adults and 2-3 small children.
Anyone two years of age and older can enjoy a
It's fun, it's easy and it's the outdoor sport for
the entire family. Even if you've never paddled a canoe
before, you and your family will be surprised at how quickly
you catch on. The major requirement for a canoe trip is the
desire to go.
There are no physical demands beyond those of normal
good health. Canoeing is open to all ages and degrees of
experience. Pick the time you wish to begin and end your
trip, our courteous drivers will pick you up at a
prearranged time and transport you
back to your vehicle. The U.S. Forest Service
requires all one-day rentals to be off the river by 6 p.m or late charges will apply.
Quiet time... on the river... If avoiding crowds is important to you, pick any day but Saturday during late June, July and August. Take advantage of lower pricing Sunday - Friday. While walk-ins are always welcome, reservations of the equipment of your choice is recommended for any day and reservations are definitely suggested and usually required to avoid disappointment on Saturdays during July, August and holidays.
Solo Kayaks - for an extra dose of excitement & fun - designed with the beginner in mind. Lively, swift, easy to maneuver and very balanced. Great for that extra
person in your group or someone who wants to go solo. We have both sit-in and sit-upons.
Two Person or Tandem Kayaks Yes - we now carry 2 Person Kayaks. Great for adult and small child or 2 adults. Reservations a must to avoid disappointment.
Family Rafts are great for families with small children and senior citizens. Rafts don't tip.
We have 3 different sizes: small for 2 or 3 people;
large for 4 or 5 people; and, extra large for 8 people.
Rafts are available for trips that begin before 12:30 p.m.
Time subject to change. Rafts are 25% slower than canoes.
NO PETS ALLOWED on rafts.
Tubes - No better way to relax on a hot summer day than drifting down the AuSable in a tube. Our tubes accommodate one person.
Extra charge for tubes with bottoms and deluxe tubes with headrest and bottoms. Tubes are 25% slower than canoes.
No tube rentals after 12:30 p.m. Time subject to change.
NO PETS ALLOWED on tubes.
Tubing on the river has also become a popular sport
during the warm summer months. We also rent cooler tubes.
Overnight canoe trips
For those who wish to escape the grind even more - our overnight trips from 2-7 days will create the perfect getaway.
We have the BEST stretch of river for overnight canoe trips. Water levels are always good and there are numerous campsites.
Check our trips/prices page for pricing.
Our staff are experts in helping you plan your overnight trip.
The river from Mio to Oscoda is all wilderness;
camping for the most part is primitive. Some areas have toilets and
water. The National Forest Scenic portion restricts camping
to designated sites. The river on this stretch
is also faster and wider than above Mio. The U.S. Forest Service may impose some campsite fees.
U.S. Forest Service camping permits required below Alcona Dam. You may contact the U.S. Forest Service at (989) 826-3252. Camping permits can also be obtained online through the U.S. Forest Service. https://www.fs.fed.us
The river from Grayling to Mio is shallower and
narrower than the lower part of the AuSable and is bounded
by mostly private property. You can only stop at designated
canoe landings and campgrounds maintained by the Michigan
Department of Natural
Resources. The DNR requires campsite fees. DNR
campsites include water and toilets. These campsites are first come, first serve basis.
Own Your Own Equipment or Fishermen with Drift Boats
We do car spots for private canoeists and fishermen.
Day or Overnight trips. Bring extra set of car keys. Great if you want to spend all afternoon or night fishing the Trophy Waters (as below Mio Dam is referred to) for that elusive Big Brown!!
Canoe Fall Colors
Spectacular fall foliage during mid-September - mid-October
A quiet time on the AuSable
Friendly pets are allowed in our canoes or kayaks. Pets are
NOT ALLOWED in rafts or tubes. Towel dry for return trip in vehicles
and keep on leash when necessary.
Alcohol and litter policy
One six pack of beer allowed per canoe. Operating a
watercraft while intoxicated is illegal. The County
Sheriff's Patrol enforces state law and local ordinances.
Hard liquor, kegs, party ball, glass beverages and Styrofoam
coolers are prohibited.
Littering is punishable by a fine of up to $400.
PLEASE carry out what you carry in.