The weather is finally getting warmer and you are feeling the urge to get outside and experience the outside world. If you’re looking for a fun outdoor activity, kayaking is a great option. It looks you are in for a luck as Minneapolis has some best spots for kayaking.
Located in Northern Minneapolis, Rice Creek is eyed by families that love to indulge in paddling the most. You get wide-open lakes along with slow, meandering streams in this Mississippi river tributary. The variety of current and landscape throughout the 15-mile-long water trail is mind-blowing. Rice Creek begins with 5 small lakes and then narrows into a creek. The creek has flat and calm water, making it good for teens and kids, as well as novice paddlers. Rice Creek opens into a Long Lake thereafter. After kayaking is over, you can explore the Long Lake Regional Park. The Peltier lake public access is used by kayak owners. The Lino lakes is also ideal in this regard.
Located in Carlton County, the Kettle River is eyed mostly by advanced paddling enthusiasts. Its unique amber waters will catch your gaze. The black spruce forests and Rocky bluffs make up a nice and unique backdrop. Most of Kettle River contains Class I rapids but in some stretches you will encounter Class II-IV rapids, which are too tough for beginners in kayaking. There is the Hell’s Gate, a tedious stretch of rapids. The canyon is beautiful, for sure. The other famous rapids include Dragon’s tooth, Mother’s delight and Blueberry Slide.
The 145 miles long waterway of Rum river and the awesome scenic beauty lure many kayaking lovers to the place. You will find so many Class 2 and 2 rapids along the river way, offering thrills to all types of kayaking lovers. There is a freshwater lake named Mille Lacs at the river’s mouth part. As Rum River flows towards the south, paddlers will get blown away by the scenic beauty of the landscape. The pine, Elm, maple trees dot the shoreline and the freshwater river is ideal for marine wildlife lovers too. You will come across plenty of species like bald eagles on the sky, white-tailed deer, turtles and ducks on river banks. The veteran kayakers love those sections of Rum River with strong current.
Bring your own kayak or rent from one of the several Kayak Rentals. They will offer kayaking gears on rent too. You may need a permit for Washington or Anoka County Park. Most people choose the Rum River central Regional Park for starting the voyage.
Minneapolis’s Cannon River is a geological marvel and a perfect destination for kayaking lovers. It is surrounded by amazing hills and rock formations. The tree-lined banks are ideal for beginners in paddling but veteran kayaking lovers can head to the Cannon Falls. Two Rivers Park Canoe Landing is where most kayak owners prefer starting from. There are many rental companies around. You will encounter only class 1 rapids when kayaking on this river. This deep gorge with its amazing flora and fauna will make you mesmerized.
The stunning limestone outcrops are awe-inspiring, to say the least. Cannon River has plenty of sandbars which are ideal if you are in the mood for having a picnic while kayaking with friends or family members. Wildlife species you will see include bald eagles, painted turtles and herons.
Covering an area from the Lake Minnetonka and spanning Minnehaha Falls, it is ideal for kayaking around the twin cities. As you paddle along Minnehaha Creek, the landscape keeps changing. You may begin like many ace paddlers at the scenic Gray’s Bay Dam and then head to the Longfellow Lagoon. Beginners at paddling will love exploring the flat water creek and the 22-mile waterway is full of scenic beauty. Minnehaha Creek typically does not get too crowded. You won’t need over 6-8 hours to cover the creek. It would be better to check the water flow at the MCWD website.
Zumbro River is liked the most by expert paddlers in Minneapolis for its challenging current and amazing landscape. The major part of the river is situated beneath the Rochester Power Dam. To ensure you sail through the intense current, get hold of a map. Zumbro Falls to Hammond is the most popular route and it covers 7 miles. The beautiful wooded forest along the river banks is the added attraction. The route covering Theilman to Kruger Park is ideal for expert paddlers. There are no rapids worth worrying about but you must watch out for intermittent snags (made by erosion). The river is also ideal when you want to indulge in angling and paddling at the same time.
Also called Kanabec, the Snake River is good for kayaking enthusiasts of varying skill levels. The river banks are known for breath-taking scenery. The lower and upper sections of the river are ideal for kayaking lovers with considerable experience in paddling. You will come across Class II-V rapids. The mid-section of Snake River, however, is ideal for those who have started paddling recently. This part comprises of the section from Mora to Pine City. There are several kayak rental agencies located in various parts of the river banks. The wildlife species you will see include the osprey, otters and eagles. You may start your voyage at the Jackson lake dam.
If you want to indulge in kayaking without getting too far from downtown Minneapolis, opt for Lake Calhoun. It is one of the waterways parts of the city’s famous chain of lakes. There are over a dozen miles of interconnected waterways. If you like paddling minus the chaos of co-paddlers, this is the place to be. When paddling on the calm and clear water of Lake Calhoun, you will see the oldest houses in Minneapolis, apart from the Grassy green fields. Bring your kayak to start paddling at any of the interlinked waterways. Plenty of kayak rental companies offer their services along the shoreline.
Root River State Water Trail
Reaching Root River State Water Trail from the twin cities takes 1 hour by road. The picturesque scenery will make you amazed as you enjoy paddling through the meandering water trail. As you paddle down, massive limestone bluffs will emerge. There will be 8 historic towns across the shoreline- they are referred as Root River Towns. Among the rocky bluffs, you will come across plenty of wildlife species such as deer, foxes, otters and more than 40 avian species. You will cover 85 miles and most of it is ideal for beginners in paddling. The entry points are located mostly in the historic towns on the shoreline.
Wild River State Park- St. Croix River
Are you in the mood to enjoy a weekend kayaking trip around the twin cities? Your best choice is the Wild River State Park, at the St. Croix River. The serene waters are surrounded by wooded forests. You will see marshes and plenty of wildlife while paddling in this region. There are campsites and rentals galore and so you need not worry if you do not own a kayak. The park has many hiking trails too.