5 Places To Kayak With Your Camera In The US
As spring approaches we can look forward to an awesome summer of kayak paddling. Why not plan some new places to kayak with your camera with my top 5 places to go.
This list contains a few of my favorite spots for taking pictures before you head out I highly recommend you take something like an Outex case with you for your camera (retails for around $500) and tether the camera to your Kayak. The Outex waterproof case can float too but I would recommend tethering if possible, even if its to yourself.
With that said, let’s go paddling . . .
Prince William Sound, Chugach National Forest, Alaska
It will come with zero surprise to anyone that I would have Alaska leading my list of places to Kayak with your camera. Not only will you see glaciers, mountains and of course the odd other paddler. But the area is full of sea life and you may be joined by orca whales which come to the area in season.
The water is cold and you may need to wear a few layers when going out of the short summer season.
You can download this (old) guide here although the information contain is pretty current still.
Lake Powell, Utah
Lake Powell is a reservoir on the Colorado River that sits on the border between Utah and Arizona. Almost all of Lake Powell and the Rainbow Bridge National Monument, is located in Utah which is where this paddling location is set. According to Wiki it is the second largest man-made reservoir by maximum water capacity in the United States second only to Lake Mead.
The scenery is breathtaking as you paddle between gorges and over deep blue waters it’s easy to get lost. Glenn Canyon Dam is where you can start most of your paddling down stream and this can be arranged locally by Lake Powell Paddle Boards who offer Kayak rental for less than $50 a day. If you have your own then I recommend taking that, especially if its a sit in.
Take lots of camera batteries with you, a memory card (over 128Gb) as you will not stop shooting while you are there. Check out the video below to see what your getting into.
Delaware Water Gap, New York
You can take the easy way or the hard way, this kayaking location is awesome. Spring is the best time to go with all the wildflowers and colors surrounding the river banks and you might see a few bear cubs and deer as your paddle down. The fall is also fantastic but you maybe left with some logistical problems if you paddle alone after September. You can check the map for foliage predictions here.
The Delaware River flows south from Milford to Delaware Water Gap which is there the shuttle bus runs to get you back to your car. There are many places to rent a kayak or canoe if you do not have your own and the FREE “River Runner” shuttle bus runs weekends however some private places do run one during the week.
You can check out the River Runner schedule and pick up points here. Service starts Saturday, May 23, 2020 and continues each Saturday and Sunday until Labor Day, September 7, 2020. Includes Memorial Day (May 25th), Independence Day (Celebrated July 3rd) and Labor Day (September 7th).
The float for the length of the river can take around 4hrs if you are a “lazy” type but you can do it in 3 if you want to race through it.
Juniper Run, Ocala National Forest, Florida
Rightly named one of the top 25 canoe runs (or kayak) in America and typically a high point of any paddlers visit to Florida. Juniper Run is a narrow and twisting waterway set under a dense canopy of forest and with a few places solid enough to get out of your kayak or canoe.
Juniper Run extends about 7 miles and the paddling can be very technical, especially at high water so it is best for experienced paddlers or go tandem with someone who is experienced. There are no intermediate access points, the average trip is about 4 hours if taken at a leisurely pace.
Watch for wildlife that includes deer, otters, raccoons, alligators (do not feed them), plenty of species of birds, and black bears. Juniper Run goes past many palms, cypress trees and southern hardwoods plus sawgrass and lots of wetlands.
If you take your own canoe or kayak there is a $12 reverse re-haul fee (reservations a must!) Be aware of the rules as the authorities DO and WILL check your coolers and bags. So no plastic bags or disposable containers are allowed, even candy or chocolate bars need to be taken out of their wrappers.
Plan your Juniper Run trip and read more about it here.
Colorado River, Arizona
Ok so this should come with no surprise either, the Colorado River in Arizona. I personally have this on my bucket list still to tick off but it’s safe to say this place is photography gold for kayaking.
The Colorado River will also take you through one of America’s most famous natural wonders, the Grand Canyon and the famous Horse Shoe Bend which is one of the most famous sights of the canyon you will see, although this time you will be in it.
You can turn this trip into a vacation in itself as there are over 226 miles of river to explore. Of course you can break it up into small sections or take an entire week to stop and take it all in camping inside the canyons and river banks along the way.
There are plenty of back-haul services that surround the Colorado River for kayaking you can check out https://kayakthecolorado.com/backhaul-services/ as they have a decent service or so I am told.