Columbus, Ohio, is known for its many rivers and creeks. And canoeing and kayaking in Columbus Ohio is a great way to experience these waterways while enjoying the fresh air and taking in the beautiful scenery. In short, some of the most popular canoeing and kayaking destinations in Columbus Ohio include Clendening Lake, Scioto River, Hocking River, and Buckeye Lake.
However, there are some kayaking restrictions and regulations that should be aware of before hitting the water. And we particularly pointed out them in this article.
Besides, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources found that people fishing on the river catch more smallmouth bass, saugeye, crappies, and sunfish. You may also encounter the hybrid white striped bass, known as a whipper. If you’re traveling with children, make sure to have an all-around white light.
Best canoeing and kayaking destinations in Columbus
Ohio’s rivers and lakes are full of natural beauty and wildlife. The state has many famous historic vistas and sandy beaches. Therefore, locals and tourists alike love Columbus for its many outdoor activities, especially canoeing and kayaking.
Check out these locations for your next adventure! Then, find out more about them in this article! You’ll be glad you did!
If you’re interested in trying out kayaking and canoeing, the Scioto River is a prime location. This 231-mile river flows through the city and joins the Ohio River in Portsmouth. It’s perfect for all skill levels, with many put-in spots near parks and Scioto Grove Metro Park.
While it’s possible to spend the entire day on the Scioto, you can also go for a day of camping and paddling. The Scioto River has a ban on motorized boats, but electric trolling motors are allowed. This river is perfect for beginners and those looking for a peaceful paddling experience.
Here are a few reasons to paddle the Scioto River:
The Scioto River is a beautiful stretch of river in southeastern Ohio. It was created during the coal mining industry and is now one of the 10 best canoeing and kayaking destinations in Columbus Ohio.
When you visit the Scioto River, don’t forget to wear a life jacket, make sure the boat is registered, and file a float plan with someone you trust. In addition, check the ODNR’s checklist before launching a boat and wear proper clothing.
If you’re new to watersports, the ease of access to rivers and lakes in Ohio may be enough to spur you on.
Dublin, Ohio, has four formal access points to the Scioto River. You can take your kayak out of Dublin Spring Park and the Emerald Parkway Bridge Parking Lot beneath I-270. O’Shaughnessy Reservoir is nine miles north of Columbus. There are boat launches and kayak rentals at the park, which include life vests. The park is part of the Central Ohio Blueways, which cover over 100 miles of water.
The Hocking River is another excellent kayaking destination in Columbus Ohio. Located just a short drive from the city, this river is a class I river with rapids and rocks. However, we recommend you have some experience kayaking before attempting the Hocking River.
A scenic drive from Columbus will lead you to the Hocking Hills and its beautiful river. This 102-mile tributary of the Ohio River is popular for its rushing waterfalls, towering trees and abundant wildlife. Hocking River canoeing and kayaking offers a scenic environment, secluded scenery and abundant wildlife. Here you can spend a day on the water or spend a few days kayaking or canoeing.
If you’d like to go rafting, Hocking Hills Canoe Livery offers trips that run two to five miles. You can also opt for an hour-long rental, which is great for beginners. You can also go rafting, but this depends on river conditions and canoeing conditions. Crockett’s trip is a 5-mile journey that lasts two hours.
Moreover, you can easily access the river. While Columbus can provide a great opportunity for outdoor activity, you’ll need to plan ahead. Be sure to use sunscreen and other protective gear if the weather conditions aren’t ideal.
It’s the perfect way to relieve stress while enjoying the outdoors. It can be a relaxing and fun experience for both adults and children.
A short trip from downtown Columbus Ohio is all it takes to reach one of the top canoeing and kayaking destinations in the country. Buckeye Lake is a popular location for canoeing and kayaking in the Columbus area, and the nearby Scioto River is another
The lake was part of the Erie Canal system in the 1800s and is now a popular destination for canoers and kayakers. It’s a nine-mile reservoir with several islands, fishing holes, and restaurants. The lake is mostly shallow, but it can be choppy at times. After a day of paddling, you can relax and take a break at one of the area’s many restaurants.
During the summer, Buckeye Lake is a fantastic place to go canoeing and kayaking in Columbus Ohio. The lake is also perfect for waterskiing, paddle boarding, and tubing. If you’d like to spend a day out of the water, there are quirky shops and even a museum dedicated to Buckeye Lake Amusement Park. If you love the outdoors, you’ll find hiking trails and bird-watching opportunities throughout the area.
Kayaking On Paint Creek In Columbus Ohio
Paint Creek is another great place for canoeing and kayaking. The creek, just south of downtown Columbus, is one of the best places for canoeing and kayaking.
While it’s not the most scenic river in the world, it’s still a popular destination for those who want to paddle without the hassle of renting a boat.
In addition to canoeing and kayaking, this park also has hiking trails, scenic railroad rides, and even a Pioneer Village where old log cabins are still used as homes. You can spend the whole day enjoying the outdoors.
If you’re looking for a quiet spot to paddle a kayak, paint creek is an ideal destination. This lake has several launch sites, including the Paint Creek State Park Campground off of Route 753, as well as Rattlesnake Creek off of Route 753 and the Columbus River. Besides, the Paint Creek State Park Campground provides lodging and a boat launch ramp for kayakers.
For those who love fishing, Paint Creek is one of the top canoeing and kayaking destinations in Columbus Ohio. With its water levels varying throughout the year, it is perfect for all skill levels.
You’ll find shallow riffles and easy-going pools as you paddle. And you’ll never run out of places to fish! You’ll even be able to spot bald eagles at Paint Creek.
There are many other options for kayaking near Columbus Ohio. One of the best places to start kayaking in the city is O’Shaughnessy Reservoir, located nine miles northwest of Columbus.
It was formed by damming the Scioto River. The water level in this lake is typically 20 feet deep, with a maximum depth of 40 feet near the dam. The water surrounding the reservoir is mostly agricultural land. The bottom of the reservoir is made up of rock and mud in the south and silt in the north.
O’Shaughnessy Reservoir has a variety of kayaking locations, and it’s easy to rent a canoe or paddleboat. Trapper John’s Canoe Livery rents out canoes and paddleboats and shuttles you back to your starting point. The company also offers five different kayak and canoe trips with varying levels of difficulty.
Whether you’re an experienced kayaker or just want to get your feet wet, you’ll enjoy exploring the scenic reservoir.
If you want to have a great time while kayaking, then Clendening Lake is the place for you. This 1,800-acre lake is the largest undeveloped lake in Ohio. It is relatively quiet and undeveloped compared to other lakes in Ohio.
The lake’s name evokes the feeling of calm and serenity. This is the perfect location for beginners and experienced kayakers alike.
For a family-friendly outing, Clendening Lake is a great option. It offers 43 miles of undeveloped shoreline and an easy 10-horsepower limit. This lake is large enough for two days of paddling.
There are also cabins and campsites near the shoreline. You can stay at Clendening Marina or rent a cabin at the shoreline. There are cabins and rooms available for under $100. The best time to visit Clendening Lake is fall.
Lake Mohican Kayaking In Columbus Ohio
If you are looking for the best kayaking destinations in Columbus Ohio, you may want to visit Pleasant Hill Lake Mohican State Park. This park offers a variety of outdoor adventures, including swimming, picnicking, fishing, and boat rentals.
Guests can explore the grounds for free or pay a small entrance fee. You should also visit the 1934 fire tower, which has free climbing to the top. From there, you can see ten miles in every direction.
There are also a variety of other activities in and around the park, including zip-lining, aerial adventures, and more. The Mohican Trail Map is available for download for free, and a map of the park’s trails can be printed for reference.
The park also hosts various programs and holiday celebrations. You can even take part in a marathon or ultra-bike race.
Moreover, if you’re looking for an easy-to-access waterway, Buckeye Lake might be the best choice. The only downside is that this lake can get crowded, and it’s a large lake! Make sure to utilize a buddy system and paddle in groups.
Top Kayak Rentals In Columbus Ohio
If you’re planning a river trip in the capital of Ohio, you may want to rent a kayak. Columbus, Ohio, has plenty of options for kayak rentals, including Olentangy Paddle and Trapper John’s Canoe Livery. Listed below are the best kayak rentals in Columbus.
Each has different amenities and experiences. For your convenience, I’ve listed some of them. I also included information about each location’s reviews and customer satisfaction ratings. When renting a kayak, make sure to wear a PFD or life jacket.
Trapper John’s Canoe Livery
If you’re looking for a unique outdoor experience, check out Trapper John’s Canoe Livery. From a half-day sampler paddle to an entire day float, the shop has it all. They even have moonlight trips. If you’re looking for a fun way to spend the day with the family, consider renting a canoe or kayak from this Columbus, Ohio-based company.
Located in Grove City, Trapper John’s Canoe Livery is close to popular attractions like downtown Columbus. Located near Circleville Rd, this business has three kayaks for rent.
Besides, their location is ideal for those with children and is also convenient for families. Whether you are planning a family trip or are visiting Columbus for business, you’ll find it easy to find the perfect kayak rental at this location.
Olentangy Paddle is another kayak and canoe rental business in Columbus. In addition to kayak rentals, they also offer guided tours down the scenic Scioto River. Their rentals include a single kayak, paddles, a life jacket, and all of the necessary equipment.
These tours last approximately 2.5 hours, which includes time on the water. Adults can sign up for a tour for $40 + tax, and it is recommended that guests be over 12 years old.
Camp Hi Canoe & Kayak Livery
One of the top kayaking destinations in Central Ohio is the Scioto River. This 231-mile river flows through Columbus before joining the Ohio River in Portsmouth. This river is ideal for beginners and experienced kayakers alike, as there are a number of put-in points.
Camp Hi Canoe & Kayak livery is located on one of Ohio’s most beautiful rivers. They offer boat rentals and guided trips for a variety of skill levels. If you’re looking for a romantic date, this is a great location for a picnic. You can choose from a variety of packages, from a two-hour trip to an eight-hour excursion.
Kayaking Restrictions And Regulations In Columbus Ohio
Kayakers should always be aware of dangerous currents and obstructions in the waterway. Lakes, pools, rivers, and canals all have their own unique dangers that kayakers need to be aware of.
There are also laws governing boat operation, which kayakers must also obey. These laws include having a boat registration, having insurance coverage, obeying traffic signals, etc.
The first restriction is that kayakers must have a valid Ohio fishing license to paddle in certain designated areas.
Secondly, kayakers are not allowed to paddle near any dams or other waterways with significant damming structures.
Finally, Kayakers must always obey all posted signs and warnings about dangerous currents or obstructions in the water.
Additionally, Columbus in Ohio has a wetland regulation that requires kayakers to stay 1 mile from any wetland or water body containing at least 10 acres of surface area.
In conclusion, if you’re looking for a great place to kayak and canoe, Columbus is definitely the place to be. There are plenty of great paddling destinations within city limits and beyond, perfect for all levels of paddlers. So if you’re in the mood for some outdoor fun this summer, Columbus is definitely the place to be!