South Florida has miles of rivers, lagoons, lakes, and waterways... and
of course, the mighty Atlantic ocean. This diversity offers supreme year-round kayaking &
stand-up paddleboarding adventures for the avid paddler. Be sure to explore all of these
"blueways" or paddle trails.
Whether you're new to the sport of kayaking, or
a seasoned-professional, you're bound to find the perfect location in Jupiter, Florida to
hone your skills; especially on the Wild and Scenic Loxahatchee River. Since we have
such a diversity of waterways to explore, the type of kayak you rent or purchase depends on
which of these areas you plan to paddle the most.
Before you run out and purchase that new kayak,
you should do a little research and be sure your spending your money wisely. There is a
vast (price and equipment) difference as you begin looking around at these human-powered
watercraft. See Kayaking 101 further down this page.
Are you short on space to store a kayak. No need to worry... you can always buy an inflatable
kayak and store it in a closet and even transport it in the trunk of your car. Check out the line
of quality kayaks by Sea Eagle Boats below:
Click for more information
Kayak the Loxahatchee River (Riverbend Park):
paddling the Loxahatchee River from Riverbend Park, there is always a slight current taking you down the river towards the two dams
(Lainhart and Masten). This current helps push you along your way, but remember that for
every hour you paddle downstream, it will take you one hour and fifteen minutes to return.
This is not a factor if you're paddling all the way to Jonathan Dickinson State Park; but
many paddlers like the 2-hour trip, which takes you down to the second dam and
back. Once you pass the second dam, you will begin to feel the slight affects of the
tidal waters of the Loxahatchee River. The further you paddle towards Jonathan Dickinson State
Park, the more you will feel the affects of the tide. This
is usually not a problem, but it's always a nice bonus if the tide is outgoing, which will
help carry you along your way to the boat ramp or dock in Jonathan Dickinson State
The Masten Dam is the second
dam that you will encounter when paddling South from the kayak launch in Riverbend
Park. If you're lucky, there will be good water flow over the dam, which creates a
waterfall effect. This can be lots of fun to go over in your kayak (for those
experienced paddlers ONLY). Others can simply portage their water craft over the wooden
ramp and dock. Note: there is a restroom along with trash bins located down the
path that runs due East of the Masten Dam. This spot is a favorite "hang out" for
paddlers, and is also the most common destination for day paddlers looking for a shorter
trip. Here's a few photos of good times at the Masten dam:
|Photographs at the Masten
|| Copyright© RBR 2010
design (ocean or sea kayak, fishing, diving, racing,
white-water, one/two seater, sit-on-top, sit-in, speed factors,
size (length, width, rocker, bow,
Rotomold - Most common, virtually
indestructible, fairly inexpensive, heavy.
Fiberglass - Light, more expensive, higher maintenance, not good for rocky
Kevlar - Expensive, light, very strong, one of the best options if you can
Inflatable - Good for traveling, great for whitewater; the material and
construction quality varies by manufacturer -- check methods for
construction, bonding, welding, or gluing of seams. Best to do your due
diligence and research the inflatable
This includes comfort
items such as seat-backs and cushions, to wearing the correct
Always try to wear clothing that is lightweight and comfortable, depending
on the local weather conditions. The newer SPF clothing will help protect
you from the damaging rays of the sun. Bring a hat and water shoes; also a
dry bag for your towel, etc.
Life vests, whistle, first-aid kit, bailer, and water. Anchor, compass, and
Tides, and Currents:
It's always a good idea to check the
local conditions before you head out in the open water. When paddling
in large, open, bodies of water you will be affected by the wind,
water conditions, tides (saltwater), and
Kayak in Open/Rough Water:
If in rough
water, a sit-on-top kayak is no problem, but take a few waves over the side of a
sit-in kayak and that can spell trouble (unless you have a spray skirt). Also,
check if the tide is incoming or outgoing, this will affect you if the wind and
tide are both pushing you the opposite way you want to go. Some currents in our
area, especially close to inlets can have massive currents that could easily tire
out an inexperienced kayaker. You can play these currents and tides to your
advantage with a little advance planning. A "float-plan" is always a good idea.
This plan will detail your trip and you should leave a copy for a friend or
family member -- for safety.
There are many paddle sport outfitters in the area that will provide instruction. Check
your local paddle shops for instructors, lessons, guides, and
Portable kayak/canoe dolly --
well worth the investment. Good ones can be found for around $80.
Depending on the weight of your boats, you may be able to stack two on top of
each other when wheeling them on the dolly. Be sure to buy the dolly that
includes a tie-down strap. You should also take into consideration the type
of substrate you will be portaging you kayak over between your
vehicle and the launch site.
Besides a life vest, whistle,
and dry bag - take along items such as hats, sunscreen, water, snacks, bug
spray, camera, phone, water shoes, rope and maybe a
Our recommendation is to "try"
before you "buy" whenever possible. Consider where you will be paddling in
order to pick the correct boat. Shorter kayaks are great for narrow, windy,
rivers, where longer kayaks are best for wide-open waterways since they tend
to track in a straight line, and provide greater stability in choppy