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Kayakers warned about safety on Lake Superior

July 10, 2012
By JOHN PEPIN - Journal Staff Writer ( , The Mining Journal

MUNISING - A recent kayak rescue along Grand Island has deputies from the Alger County Sheriff's Office warning kayakers to use care and caution when navigating Lake Superior, suggesting "proper equipment and training is needed for safety on the lake."

At 3:30 p.m. Saturday, the sheriff's office was notified there were five kayakers in distress on the northeast point of Grand Island. The Rip Tide Ride tour boat reported the incident to the U.S. Coast Guard on a marine radio.

Two deputies and two park rangers from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore responded from Munising Bay in a 26-foot Alger County Marine patrol and rescue boat.

Police said rescue swimmers used an inflatable raft tethered to a safety line to rescue Edward Gallagher, 62, of Iowa from a rocky plateau. Gallagher had taken shelter there along with the tour group leader. Three other kayakers' from the group had traveled to a beach near one of the lighthouses on Grand Island.

Gallagher told deputies he had limited experience kayaking and had become exhausted. Eventually, he lost control of his kayak in the two foot seas and overturned. The tour group leader was able to assist him to the plateau, where he remained with his kayak until rescuers arrived. Deputies said Gallagher was exhausted but did not require medical attention. The sheriff's department boat brought Gallagher back to the mainland.

John Pepin can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 206.



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