7 Reasons to Love Winter Kayaking

A few of the best things about paddling through the coldest season


Winter on the Potomac River

#1 Cold weather means no crowds. Many experienced paddlers store their gear through the winter and beginner paddlers can't safely paddle in the winter without knowing how to roll, so that makes the water a lot less populated. There's nothing like the illusion of having a whole lake or ocean to yourself.

#2 Winter Kayaking is peaceful. When the crowds are gone, the water is quiet. Listen to the occasional splashes from the fish or the gentle roll of the waves. There's not much out there more peaceful than cold weather kayaking.

#3 Winter waterfront makes for stunning scenery. From ice formations to spectacular sunsets, there's plenty to see as the weather gets colder.

Image from Flickr user FreeWine

#4 You might see some wildlife. Especially in the months leading up to winter, animals are busy preparing for the colder temperatures, so you might be able to get a look.

#5 It can be an awesome challenge. There's no doubt about it, cold weather padding certainly requires more preparation, skill and knowledge of safety techniques than summer paddling, but that’s no reason to skip the season. With a few quick tips on how to handle the cold in a kayak, you can take on the brisk waters.

#6 hot chocolate—before, during and after. You’ll need layers, maybe some mats and hot liquid to keep you warm before, during and after a winter paddle. Why not bring along the most delicious drink in the world: hot chocolate. Just make sure to bring water too.

#7 There’s plenty of adventure in the winter. You might think after the rapids in spring and the waves of summer, there is no more adventure left for the colder months, but there is plenty left to do. With the right gear you can take on treacherous water and even glide among floating chunks of ice.


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