Getting Started / 101

Get Ready for Your First Time

Canoeing is an energy intensive recreational sport. Eating well before, during and after your adventure will make a big difference in your level of enjoyment, get too tired and you're not going to have fun; so power up and let's paddle off!

  • Before you hit the water it is a good idea to do some stretching exercises to warm up your muscles as with any strenuous activity.
  • Go paddling with a guided trip or an experienced paddler you trust the first few times you go out.
  • “Always” take someone along, the buddy system definitely has its place in canoeing.


Please take your time to build your level of expertise; canoeing can of course be dangerous posing unseen risks, so we ask you to wear your personal floatation device and a helmet at all times. Paddling in groups is also highly recommended.

If you are a beginner there is much to know.  Most sport shops have free basic beginner courses available on a monthly basis. They are a wealth of information. You never know what you don't know until it's too late, so take a quickie course if you think it would help you enjoy your first day on the water.

Don’t forget to bring dry bags. Don't plan on throwing your cell phone in the hatch and expect it to work when you return. A dry bag is recommended for all equipment you put in the boat. Double bag things like cell phones before putting them in the dry bag and place them on top. .When cool water contacts the bag in causes the air in the bag to contract, this will suck water right into zip lock style bags, please heed this advice.

Beginner Checklist

  • waterproof sunblock
  • polarized sunglasses
  • hat
  • swim wear
  • shoes that can get wet, flip flops are a poor choice as they tend to wash away
  • plenty of drinking water
  • energy snacks such as fruit and energy bars
  • camera
  • first aid kit
  • insect repellant
  • signal mirror
  • lighter
  • flashlight