Kayak and Canoe Rental, Another Option
Florida to Vancouver
Kayak rental is a fantastic introduction to the sport, a great way to get a group of friends or family out on the water and a cheap and convenient way of testing a kayak before you buy one yourself.
Kayaking has grown vastly in popularity in recent years and the number of kayak rental outfits is steadily increasing, from Florida right across the country and up to Vancouver. From the flat waters of the Maine interior to the Pacific Coast and the rumbling rivers of the mountain districts, kayak rental offers a cheap introduction to the pleasures of paddling.
What type of paddling can I do?
Kayak rental outfits generally offer a variety of kayaks for rent depending on the water conditions in their area. Coastal outfitters usually offer sea and touring kayaks as well as surf kayaks. Whitewater outfitters offer downriver and play boats and flat water outfitters offer everything from touring kayaks to fishing kayaks and traditional canoes. If you’re an inexperienced kayaker it’s best to head out for a few hours to begin with and then work yourself up to full day or multi-day trips.
Outfitters usually only allow rentals of closed cockpit kayaks to renters who have completed a kayaking basic skills class. But you can usually do a trip in a closed cockpit kayak as part of a guided tour. It’s important to remember that kayaking is a dangerous sport. If you don’t have the requisite skills don’t risk it even if you find an indifferent outfitter who doesn’t require any qualifications.
What is included in a kayak rental?
This varies from company to company but most rental outfits supply you with all the gear you’ll need – the kayak, paddles, personal flotation devices and helmets if necessary. If you’re planning a multi-day trip you’ll need to bring your own camping gear and supplies but you can usually rent dry-bags, seats and back rests from the outfitter.
The outfitter should also carry out a full safety briefing about the water you’re going to paddle and the equipment you have rented. If you’re planning a longer trip outfitters will advise you on a route to take and should be able to tell you the weather forecast for the duration of your trip.
How much does it cost to rent?
The cost of renting a kayak varies greatly depending on the type of kayak you wish to rent and who you rent it from. Prices can be vastly different from location to location even for the same equipment. Plastic sit on top kayaks are generally the cheapest to rent, sit in kayaks are more expensive and fibreglass or composite kayaks are the most expensive. Tandem kayaks generally cost about a third more than solos.
As a general guide expect to pay between $20 to $60 for a day trip depending on the type of kayak you wish to rent and slightly less per day for multi-day trips. Most kayak outfitters include transportation to your put in point as part of the rental cost. Outfitters will also rent you laminated maps of the area, wetsuits, boots, gloves and dry bags.