Noble County Birding & Kayaking Tour

Kimmell, IN 46760, USA

IndiGo Birding Nature Tours
  • Email address verified
8 reviews
Jun 13 - 16, 2023
Group size: 6 - 8
Noble County Birding & Kayaking Tour
Kimmell, IN 46760, USA

IndiGo Birding Nature Tours
  • Email address verified
8 reviews

Jun 13 - 16, 2023
Group size: 6 - 8

About this trip

Explore the best natural areas of northeast Indiana with IndiGo Birding Nature Tours! Noble County is home to Chain O’Lakes State Park, a beautiful example of kettle lakes and forested glacial till terrain. The state park will be the focal point of our tour, but we will visit several other natural areas and birding hotspots. Our lodging will be at the historic Kimmell House Inn Bed and Breakfast, located within 15 minutes of most of our birding spots. 

We will kayak multiple times at Chain O’Lakes State Park, where we will weave through the narrow channels that connect the lakes and get close encounters with a variety of bird species.  On the first afternoon we will meet at the park for some birding and hiking before going to the nearby Kimmell House Inn B&B to check in. Each day will involve an early morning birding walk at a nearby nature preserve followed by a full breakfast at the Inn. We have day trips planned to two amazing environmental and historic sites: Gene Stratton-Porter State Historic Site and Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center. Each day will also include a “birding by kayak” trip on the connected lakes at the state park. I have purposely allowed for some flexibility in the schedule so that we can adjust plans as necessary based on the weather forecast; we want to take advantage of the best conditions to be out exploring! 


 We will meet at 3:00 p.m. at Chain O'Lakes State Park on the 13th. The tour ends around noon on the 16th. In between, here are the places we plan to visit:

  • Chain O’Lakes State Park: 2,718-acre park with nine small, interconnected lakes and 23 miles of forested trails.
  • Gene Stratton-Porter State Historic Site: The author’s 1913 home and gravesite sit on a 125-acre protected natural area.
  • Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center: This Goshen College property provides hiking trails through a variety of ecosystems on a 1,189-acre nature preserve.
  • Spear Lake Nature Trail: A trail on a state nature preserve in the Tri-County Fish & Wildlife Area.
  • Lloyd Bender Memorial Forest: A 1.1 mile loop trail on this ACRES land trust property.

Birds We Hope To See

June is the time that many birds are nesting or raising young. We should see a variety of wetland, grassland, and forest species: Sandhill Crane, Wood Duck, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Pileated Woodpecker, Willow and Least Flycatchers, Scarlet Tanager, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Baltimore Oriole, Yellow-breasted Chat, Indigo Bunting, and many warblers: Blue-winged, Prothonotary, Hooded, Cerulean, Chestnut-sided, American Redstart and Ovenbird. Considerable time will be spent on identifying and learning birdsongs.

Other Important Details

This is the first offering of an exciting new itinerary. Some prior kayaking experience is preferred, but none of the paddling trips we take will be very difficult or long. You are welcome to contact David before registering to find the best traveling and lodging package for you and your touring companions. A single supplement may be available if space allows, but priority will be given to those registering as double occupancy. There is one room that could sleep 3 or 4 people if that better fits your needs.


Because we are traveling as a group, we require that anyone participating in this tour is up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters. 

What’s included

  • Lodging
    At the Kimmell House Inn Bed & Breakfast
  • Breakfast
    Full breakfast each morning at the Kimmell House Inn
  • Tours
    Birding & kayaking tours led by guide David Rupp

What’s not included

  • Lunch, Dinner, Drinks
    We will eat in restaurants. Not included in registration.
  • Transportation
    Additional cost ($100) to include transportation from Bloomington or to be picked up along the way.
  • Kayak Rental
    Not included unless you pay the $50 rental cost at checkout. If you don't rent a kayak from IndiGo Birding, it is assumed that you are bringing your own.
  • Entrance Fees?
    Bring your state parks pass. We will likely have enough passes to cover the entire group, but I can't guarantee it for those driving separately.

Available Packages

Double occupancy

You will share a room with spouse, partner, or friend. You will be able to enter your roommate's info later in the booking process. 

Deposit: $200

Available options

Your Organizer

IndiGo Birding Nature Tours
8 reviews
IndiGo Birding Nature Tours is a birding & kayaking guide service for Indiana, Chicago, & Central America. David Rupp started the business in 2013 with the goal of connecting people with nature through birding. He welcomes all levels of nature enthusiasts for relaxed and personalized tours designed for creating memorable birding experiences.


We loved this birding trip to Costa Rica with IndiGo Birding and Lifer Nature Tours. Inexperienced birders were welcomed, the length (9 nights) was just right, the eco-lodges were relaxing and retreat-like, and the meals were excellent. We were able to choose our own meals from the menus, which was very nice. Our guides, David Rupp, and local guide Jorge Gabriel Campos, were so knowledgeable , patient and flexible. The daily activities and locations were varied. We always felt well cared for! The amazing bird species and exotic animals were thrilling for us, as first time visitors to Costa Rica. Thank you to our guides and many new friends!
By Lynn R for Costa Rica with Lifer Nature Tours on Apr 30, 2024
This was my second time birding in Costa Rica, truly a wonderful destination for beautiful birds and scenery, delicious food, comfortable lodges, and friendly people. Our guide Jorge and driver Raoul were exceptional and I would like to thank them, David Rupp of Indigobirding, and my travel companions for making this trip a true pleasure.
By Margaret K for Costa Rica with Lifer Nature Tours on Apr 30, 2024
Our Belize trip was terrific. David is a talented leader and provided excellent lodges, the best local guides and a well paced group. He did a great job of reading the group and following our lead about the pace. There were options every day about how to participate. The integration of birding, the natural beauty of Belize and the Mayan ruins and culture made for a special trip. The local arrangements were seamless. After the trip a few of us stayed on to go to the ocean and he provided us with recommendations for that part of the trip as well.
By Alice T for Belize Birding & Culture Private Tour on Mar 28, 2024
Trip of a lifetime! Both my wife and I are novice "birders" so this trip was really perfect for us. The birding was fantastic and the cultural tours were amazing for us. David and the local guides were unbelievably good! Their knowledge and expertise was incredible. Accommodations were all amazing. Belize is a wonderful country and should be on your bucket list.
By David B for Belize Birding & Culture Tour on Mar 21, 2024
I’ve been birding with David for several years and I greatly admire his ability to identify birds in flight, as well as by their calls and songs. What impresses me most is that David knows all the hotspot habitats of different birds in Indiana. Each birding tour is like a treasure hunt. I always come home filled with awe, wonder and joy! Commonly, David emails us a list of birds we’ve seen during the tour. I’ve learned so much from him. It’s rare to have a birding guide who’s not only a naturalist and knowledgeable about birds, plants and trees, but also a highly skilled photographer and a dedicated conservationist. David is a very gifted birder. For me, he is a bird whisperer committed to helping us connect spiritually with our fellow feathered friends through knowledge and understanding. The Belize trip in February of 2024 was a trip of a lifetime. We saw or heard (mostly saw) over 180 species of birds within a week. It’s exhilarating to see so many gorgeous and exotic-looking colorful birds every day. Besides David, we had two very knowledgeable local guides who helped us identify birds and took us to Mayan sites to learn about the Mayan culture. The entire trip was very informative and well organized, as have been all previous birding trips that I’ve had with David. We had fantastic accommodations and food, which greatly enhanced our experience in Belize. I relish viewing David’s photos in the Google album that he created after the trip. The photos help me remember and reminisce about the wonderful time we had in Belize. It’s truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I highly recommend the trip to everyone. Bettina Hahn
By Chun-Fang H for Belize Birding & Culture Tour on Mar 07, 2024
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