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Those in the know will tell you that one of the best ways to spend your afternoon is floating down your favorite bayou while soaking up sun with friends or family. Being the Bayou City, there are many opportunities to enjoy canoeing or kayaking adventure. If you are looking for a little more adventure than the calm of the bayou, try kayaking the moving waters of nearby rivers.
National Safety Council's safe canoeing tips (click here)
Safety checklist for canoeing - before you go and while you're out on the water (click here)
Keeping dry and keeping safe while canoeing (click here)
Clean Boats Campaign!! Let's help keep our lakes and rivers free of invasive plant species!
*provided by HoustonWilderness.org
This is a video of our beginners' whitewater kayak class at the Power Olympic Outdoor Center ( http://www.kayakinstruction.org ). If you're a member who attended you can order the DVD from them (it's good).
This video may look like we know what we're doing, but we were all total beginners at the start of the one day class. Michelle & Ben taught us everything we needed to know. Lots of fun, even though some of us had trouble staying upright!
We also take a trip to Mexico every year in October to run the whitewater south of the border, and we always have a great adventure! Just check out the video below to see! You can sign up for the trip on our calendar in October. You should sign up early because we always fill up fast!
Texas offers kayakers a wide range of choices to enjoy this great outdoor activity. With more than 3,700 named streams, 15 major rivers and some 3,300 miles of tidal shoreline along the Gulf Coast, Texas offers myriad opportunities for paddling adventures of all types. You have plenty of freshwater streams, rivers, and lakes to choose from and lots of choices for saltwater paddling. Bottom line, there are lots of places to river kayak and enjoy the water, scenery and camaraderie. Kayak fishing is growing leaps and bounds and Texas rivers have some fish just waiting for you, so give it a try!
Places to Kayak in and around Houston:
Lakes & Bayous: Houston isn't called the "Bayou City" for nothing! We have plenty of lakes and bayous that you can easily access on the weekends or even during the week!
Lake Livingston - a short drive north of Houston, Lake Livingston is a recreator's paradise! You can camp, hike, bike, and more! Kayak rentals are available at the marina to navigate the flat water and see the local wildlife! (More Details)
Lake Conroe - The Lake Conroe area has experienced incredible growth and transformation in recent years. There's an abundance of all kinds of boating and a great place to start with flat water kayaking (More Details)
Clear Lake - With Johnson Space Center right around the corner, Clear Lake has had its ups and downs in recent years. But, one thing has stayed the same: sailors flock to Clear Lake for the Wednesday races and to sail the bay. Kayakers can get familiar with ocean currents and salt water by traversing the shoreline along the lake. (More Details)
Sheldon Lake - On the south side of Houston, Sheldon Lake State Park gives kayakers and boaters an opportunity to view wildlife and/or fish from the comfort of their boat. (More Details)
288 Lakes - Houston's premier freshwater facility! You can kayak, paddleboard, swim or scuba dive in this easily accessible location just south of Houston! (More Details)
Lake Woodlands - BCO Often holds flat water kayaking lessons here. It's a great place to learn, and you can even kayak the waterways to get a great view of concerts at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion! (More Details)
Buffalo Bayou - Traversing through the center of Houston, Buffalo Bayou provides an abundance of wildlife and views for the adventurous kayaker! (More Details)
Cypress Creek - Starting at Pundt Park in Houston Precinct District 4, you can do leisurely weekly or weekend trips along the waterways. (More Details)
Lake Somerville - A family destination in the Hill Country, it is a great weekend getaway with flat water kayaking and other recreational opportunities as well! (More Details)
Oyster Creek - In Sugar Land, Oyster Creek is a good place to put in a kayak and paddle around for a whole day or just an evening. You can also fish, view wildlife, and leisurely paddle along the canals.
Rivers:Texas is home to some beautiful rivers, and most of them are the perfect temperature year-round. With varying degrees of difficulty, these rivers are the best place to learn whitewater kayaking or to spend a weekend improving those skills! Below is just a sampling of the rivers in Texas.
San Marcos River - The San Marcos River is a spring-fed river that stays a temperate 68 degrees year-round. Some man-made whitewater features provide the perfect setting for learning whitewater kayaking. (More Details)
Guadalupe River - A popular tubing destination in New Braunfels, the Guadalupe River's relaxed pace is another great option for learning how to paddle and navigate the rivers. (More Details)
Neches River - The Neches River is one of East Texas' major waterways that flows into the Gulf of Mexico. It is abundant with wildlife all along the banks, and is popular for recreation because of its constant water levels. (More Details)
Frio River - There's a reason they call it the Frio River. It's COLD year-round, so when the hot Texas summer months seem to be wearing on, a dip in this river is refreshing and stimulating! (More Details)
Bayou City Outdoors - Bayou City Outdoors is Houston's Outdoor Activities and Social Organization - We are the largest in the state of Texas, and you can find us out on the water kayaking several times a month! We provide lessons to beginners and kayaking trips for those wanting more of a challenge. Click HERE for more information! www.BayouCityOutdoors.com
Texas State Park's Texas Paddling Trails - There are 38 official paddling trails in the state of Texas, and they are well maintained and easily accessible for kayaking, fishing, or just outdoor recreation. More Information Here!
Power Outdoor Olympic Center - The Power Outdoor Olympic Center is a kayak instruction center for everyone! They have lessons for beginners, intermediate, or advanced. You can learn whitewater or flat water kayaking from the experts! More information: http://www.kayakinstruction.org/
Team River Runners - Team River Runner Houston is a non-profit organization that provides kayaking lessons to military veterans and their families. They are also a great resource with excellent instructors, so if you're interested in getting involved in kayaking or if you want to help others through kayaking, this is a great place to start! More Information Here!
Kayaking Day Touring Checklist from REI
Want to know what to bring on a day trip out kayaking? We have a checklist from REI that will help you make sure you have what you need to go out for a day with Bayou City Outdoors!