Kayaking is a great way to get outdoors, get some exercise and find safe socialization during COVID-19. Some folks might think the sport ends with the summer, but that is not the case. As fall gets into swing and cold weather takes over, folks are looking for places to Kayak on flatwater. Fortunately, North Carolina offers a variety of kayaking options for all skill levels.
Local kayaker Gui Rimkevicius has some spots to recommend. These fun kayaking spots will let you get your fill of nature, but let you avoid getting soaking wet in the cold weather.
1. Lower Eno
This lower part of the Eno River connects to Falls Lake and offers a calm kayaking venue. The best access is the Eno River boat launch off Redmill Road. This is flatwater, so trying it is great for the colder fall. Rimkevicius says, “You don’t have to worry about…getting wet. Parts of Eno do have whitewater if levels get high, even up to a Class 3 in a couple of sections.”
2. Falls Lake
This lake is one of the biggest recreation areas in the state. There are several options for kayaking, but here are two of the best:
Hickory Hill boat ramp is a free, 24/7 ramp which has the smallest amount of boat traffic. Not to mention you can always find nice sunsets there.
Finally, Beaver Dam can get busy, and its entrance has a $7 charge to launch. There is lots of upsides, though: no gas-powered boats in this section, along with plenty of great fishing and swimming.
3. Haw River
Consider this Pittsboro river, but also be wary. Rimkevicius says, “This is the best [local] whitewater, but it doesn’t run all the time, and you have to depend on the rain.” Beginners should take someone who knows what they are doing, since Haw River can become Class 3 whitewater.
4. Falls Reservoir
This reservoir is in Badin (out towards Charlotte). The caves here are cool sites to experience while kayaking. You have to be careful, however, because reservoir authorities release water sometimes. If you hear the release alarm, you need to vacate the area as soon as possible.
5. Robertson Millpond
This 85-acre refuge is hidden away in Wendell, NC. Its swampy area is a great place to paddle through water beneath high trees, and it also offers lots of animal sightings as well. You can launch for free if you bring your own kayak.
We hope this list gave you some new North Carolina kayaking spots to try. There are tons of other great places in the state, and we could never fit them all in one article. Let us know some of your favorite in the comments!