PRE - REGISTRATION will be mandatory in 2017. Registration will begin May 1st and continue until July 15th. Do not procrastinate however as there is a cap this year and when you register, you will be choosing a professor and you may prefer on over the other!


There are no "drinking game" type challenges. At no time does PaddleQuest staff provide alcohol to the participants.  

The Questers in 2015 Epic Legacy must choose sides and choose wisely. On day 1 teams choose an alliance and on Day 2, compete with that alliance in a scheduled match series of games that emphasize teammwork. If you were at PQ 2015, the games will not be as physically demanding for 2016. On day 2 the various alliances will gather at "The Proving Grounds" to compete for points. The result will direct the storyline into unknown directions...

During the quest you will be required to find the "Totem Masters" who may be a pirate, castaway, island hermit or a hero. These masters will give you a secret chant to recite at the scoring tables for a massive bonus. 

Day 2 & Alliances

Day 2 will no longer be a reboot of Day 1. Day 2 will have a completely new challenge lineup. Team will still be able to hunt down the magic items and the totem masters but they will not be able to acquire any stamps missed on Day 1.  

These are the alliances:

Jolly Green Pirates
In 2014 the Wake Pirates led by Captain Abraham Abraham and Jolly Greens with Capn' Matt joined together against all leadership in The Backwaters instead lobbying for a free-river without limits. The were once bitter rivals until Matt from the Jolly Greens was a captive of his crew on Pirate Island after being kicked out by Freedle Frogesh. After witnessing the pirates cruel ways he realized that by joining the Pirates he could keep the questers safe by keeping Abraham Abraham at bay. Become the Ying to Abraham's yang. Captain Matt of the Jolly Greens has sent Abraham Abraham on a mission to find treasure and in his absence Abraham has promoted on of his crew to Captain until his return....

Elected Interdimensional Shaman Lord in 2012, The Wizard Kulku is the shapeshifting shaman who helped open the portal and has through the years been a force of great controversy but also a bringer of logic and fun into the land. After opening the portal he now struggles to fight against the many forces that threaten this land from...beyond. 

Lakeside Mike & Lord Houlihan
Once known as King Mike, Lakeside Mike is all about tending bar at Lakeside and being a new Dad. He and Prophet Amy had a baby boy, "Young Prince Lakeside". After the birth, Prophet Amy left The Backwaters so since then, Lakeside Mike has been working odd hours and is a single-Dad. He is vying to regain his power to bring strength to the people and to find a home for his new family. He has no permanent home as of yet as he was ejected from Kirsch Camp.

Lord Houlihan helped start PaddleQuest with Lakeside Mike and now he has returned from seclusion to help steer the Backwaters in a new direction. 

Kajun the Rare & The Rangers
Kajun floated into the Backwaters 5 years ago looking for a place to call his own after his life took a turn. After recruiting questers and several professors he gas cultivated a Community College of Explores or Kajun's College of Explorers. 

Nukpana, Cosmic Hoarder and King of Faerie's: The Campers
Nukpana is a mysterious yet fun loving character of magic from beyond the portal. After the portal opened in 2009 Nukpana emerged and was able to easily charm the pants off of everyone he met including Bear and Queen Nestra. He moved into Kirsch Camp and has not left. Faeries have arrived at Kirsch Camp due to unknown causes. The Cosmic Hoarder is the trash collector and has a strong alliance with Nukpana at Kirsch Camp. 

Sheera the Sorceress, Bog Demon and Dark Ward
The Sorceress is seeking to regain a hold on The Backwaters with her charm and magic.  Her motives are unknown. Ever since it was revealed that she was sister to Queen Nestra, her actions have been conflicted. She is trying to reunite with her Bog Demon. She has employed an evil force called the Dark Ward which is mysterious and surely hold secrets.

Saturday Scoring

All teams will turn in their stamp cards on Saturday evening to be scored. This will give teams a better idea of their standing on Day 1 and also speed things up on Sunday, getting teams traveling from out of town back on the road as quickly as possible after the ceremony. 

What is PaddleQuest? Help me.

PaddleQuest sends you and your team from place to place to compete in various games and challenges for Power Stamps. Along the way you will meet characters who inhabit the storyline of The Backwaters. Talk to these characters to get maps to totems (see above) and magic items. When you find trash you may turn it into treasure by bringing it to the "Cosmic Hoarder". The team with the most points in each class is named: Protector. 

Participants may enter as a coed team of three, team of two or solo 'Lonestar" paddler. These “Questers” paddle canoes, kayaks or stand up paddle boards along waterways using maps to guide them to characters offering challenges for Power Stamps. Along the way questers gather trash for additional stamps. In addition to finding magic items and completing challenges (as if this were not enough) you may hunt down Chant Totems, which when complete-give you a phrase to recite for a large bonus at the scoring tables. The team with the most points is named "The Protector." There are three classes competing for the title: Coed team of three (A), team of two (B) or Lonestar (solo paddlers). The Protectors (champions) take home traveling trophies, sponsor prizes and more.

Clean up adventure racing?

Thats right, PaddleQuest is a clean-up adventure race. Along the way, teams are encouraged to pick up trash that they find floating or onshore that they then exchange for additional power stamps from one of the characters in play, usually the Cosmic Hoarder. In 2014 two teams found two old tube TVs! Thats a lot of 2s! Others have found chairs, bumpers, ancient live traps, cans, baits, and much much more. Trash collection is not mandatory but is encouraged by the additional points earned for hunting down unique trash. After the event we hope that questers will start seeing trash as treasure in their own excursions. 


Does the registration fee include canoes/kayaks?
Due to the cost and logistics, canoes and other craft are not provided. For Stevens Point, check with Nature Treks, ED Ventures or Bahamas Bar. Do not forget your life vests as you cannot quest without them! Please take good care of your rental craft.

Do I need a team to register?
You may enter as a coed team of three (all female teams are also legit), a team of two or as a solo paddler. NO SUNDAY SUBSTITUTIONS. This means no fresh players on Sunday. You may paddle alone on Sunday. Only the captain needs to actually register, so you may form the team later or change to a different class as needed. Refunds will not be given to teams that drop class. The best onsite registration time is on Friday prior to the Quest as Saturday morning things can get hectic. If you are stuck going solo but would rather be on a team show up to registration on Friday night at Lakeside Bar from 6pm – 7:30pm and perhaps you can find a crew. Another way to find a team is our Facebook page or if you are a Twitter person just drop some #feathers @PaddleQuest style. 

How do I register? Do I need to register in advance?
Register online in advance starting in May 1st until July 1st. This reserves your camping spot (space is limited at Lakeside Bar in Stevens Point to up to 50 teams). If you do not pre register there may not be camping available. Lakeside Bar camping is free for questers and for other events you miss out on important information. 

You may register day-of for all events. For our Stevens Point event we have Friday night registration and fun (August 7th) which is highly recommended as Saturday morning gets a little crazy and you could miss out on some critical information. Day-of registrants will have all the same map clues, but no extra time to decipher them. All teams must check in race day. The registration fees are slightly higher Day of, so if you sign in

I'm still lost. What is PaddleQuest?!
This can be a tough question to answer because the event is different things to different people. We made this video to help! PaddleQuest is a competitive, paddling-based clean up adventure race with an ongoing storyline that you, the quester, helps write through your actions. You may be as involved as you like. Some teams just paddle at their own pace and enjoy the weather and friendly people . Other teams have a theme, getting super involved in the story and go-for-the-GOLD (not always the pirate gold, but the trophy- you get the point).

What do we do with all the litter that we collect?
Safely collect trash from the water using grabbers or by wearing gloves. Keep a dedicated trash bag secured to your craft (so as not to lose it all when tipped). When you run across “The Garbage Barge” you may unload your trash for a “ECO STAMP” the most valuable stamp in PaddleQuest. The trash is then recycled if possible or sent away in our dumpster.

How do you win?
Each year and event PQ is slightly different, so each year strategies change. Treasures and stamps however, will always have value. Make it checkpoints and try to complete challenges. Many times collecting the right combination of magical items will score you more points in the end. For example: In 2006 when team ARRR! rescued the Queen- this was the number one event but they still did not win overall. In 2010 The “New Age Heroes” captured the Alpha-Bistro but still only managed to place third.

Pay attention to the pre-registration email packet: It will contain information important to your victory.

What do you win?
Winners take home a traveling trophy that they can then modify to their liking. The “Protectors” are also glorified in PQ social media and in the video content. Sponsors also provide various prizes that are different every year.

How do you volunteer?
If you want to be a character, or help run PQ, apply on the volunteer page or just send a note to:


PaddleQuest has been in existence since 2002 when it was started by a Loyola University Chicago video crew, directed by Matt Kirsch. After the first year which was set up for a video and only lasted five hours, the competitors asked for another quest and Matt delivered. Each year since the event has grown and developed- aging gracefully. As more participants join in the fun the event streamlines a bit and the scoring becomes tighter. 

In 2011 the event began being held in other locations such as Milwaukee, Minneapolis, King, WI and Lake DuBay. 

This video!