Personal Watercraft

Pine River USFS Permits

Watercraft permits are required for all watercraft, including tubes, from the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend through the Monday of Labor Day Weekend. Permits are required for all watercraft on the Pine River between Elm Flats and Low Bridge.

We cannot facilitate shuttles for folks bringing their craft unless they have first purchased River Permits from the US Forest Service. Until they run out for any given day, they are available for $2/craft plus a $6 transaction fee from the USFS at 1–877–444- 6777 or at the Pine River Page.


If you bring your paddlecraft, have purchased your river permits and parking passes, and need help with your transportation, we charge the fee in the Table below, based on the starting and ending point.

Many who have brought their own in the past, choose now to just rent from us. It saves the hassle and cost of obtaining river permits; parking passes, loading, unloading, cleaning your craft, vehicle gas, plus paying a third party to facilitate your shuttle.

PRPC Car Spotting Rates

About Car Spotting Prices

We are a business with payroll, taxes, insurance, equipment, buildings and associated overhead. When we are providing transportation for folks who own their own craft, the Michigan Department of Transportation licensing and testing requirements for our employees are more stringent, hence expensive, and we are also required to pay for an additional rider on our insurance policy. We factored these costs into the fees shown in the above pricing table.

We serve customers renting our craft first. If we have the resources to shuttle for you, we will be happy to do so. Thank you for understanding.

A neighbor and friend of ours also does car-spotting. Contact John at 231-846-4464

I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you how pleased I am with the level of service we received and the quality of facilities that we experienced during our recent outing through Pine River Paddlesport Center. Over the years I have worked with many canoeing outfitters, but I can honestly say that I have never felt so genuinely welcomed and accommodated as you and your staff made me feel. Your eagerness to make our trip exactly as we wanted was as refreshing as the actual paddling. I very much appreciated the thought you gave to which boats would make more sense as we switched from the Manistee to the Pine. It would have been easy for you to take the easy way out and let us go with the boats we already had, and the effort you put into switching for us speaks a lot about your service. I was also particularly impressed how you engaged the Scouts during your paddling "lesson" before we left. Working that process as a series of questions focused their attention and really made the points "stick". As for the facilities, I am ecstatic that I have found a place where I can know that I can go and have everything that I'm looking for in a non-wilderness campsite. You've really hit the mark with large, well spaced out sites where you don't feel like you're camping with the folks at the next site. Impeccably clean bathhouse facilities are a rarity, and yours is probably the cleanest I've ever seen. The focus on maintaining the peace and quiet of the woods really puts it over the top. I usually but a T-shirt from outfitters that I use mainly as a reminder of the trip that I took, and I bought a PRPC shirt as well. Somehow wearing the shirt last night felt different.....that I was actually proud to be wearing it. Thanks for a job well done.
Dave S.