They offer kayaks, canoes, fishing kayaks, pedal kayaks and stand up paddle boards for rent, camps and instruction. Lake Buchanan is located about an hour and 15 minutes northwest of Austin and, in addition to paddling, it offers some of the best striped bass and white bass fishing in the state. Year-round, locals and travelers head to Lady Bird Lake to kayak and paddleboard on the Colorado River. On the weekends, Lady Bird Lake can be found sprinkled with kayaks, paddleboards, and canoes. There are great photo opportunities with the cities downtown skyline and you can easily paddle to Barton Springs Pool. These parks offer launching locations and shoreline access for exploring the different reaches of one of the largest lakes in Central Texas. Yes, there is a Colorado River in Texas. Photo: Getty Images. There are a total of seven parks located on the different fingers of the lake. The La Hacienda Sun RV Resort in Austin is perfectly situated for paddling on the (Texas) Colorado River. If you’re looking for a spot a little further south, the Summit Vacation & RV Resort is located just 20 minutes from the shores of Canyon Lake. Because it runs through San Marcos (which is home to Texas State University), the San Marcos River gets a reputation for a college-aged crowd. Locals and visitors alike hike, bike, and walk it, as well as birdwatch, canoe, paddleboard, and fish for carp, largemouth bass, catfish, and sunfish in and around this man-made reservoir once known as Town Lake. This 10-mile loop around Lady Bird Lake is an Austin staple and includes a sampling of several centrally-located parks along the way. Lady Bird Lake. We have the best gear to ensure you have a great day on the water. This is especially true during the peak river tubing season, but there are much quieter times of the year where you can enjoy the lush green scenery along the banks in peace. This man-made reservoir on the Colorado River sits in downtown Austin. This law was passed in 1964 after two drownings occurred in the lake. Lady Bird Lake. In addition, kayak rental and SUP rental are also available at the boathouse. Any information published by Condé Nast Traveler is not intended as a substitute for medical advice, and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional. It’s a man-made reservoir that’s part of the Guadalupe River. BOATER ADVISORY: Zebra mussels have invaded this reservoir! This location is perfect for Central Texas RVers looking for a relaxing, luxury staycation spot. Lone Star Kayak Tour and and PaddleBoard Tours: Kayaking on Lady Bird Lake - See 53 traveler reviews, 21 candid photos, and great deals for Austin, TX, at Tripadvisor. Find out more here. To have a listen go here. They rent kayaks, canoes, and stand up paddles with hourly or daily rates that vary from weekday to weekend. © 2020 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. The RV park boasts a total of 75 full hookup sites and accommodates rigs up to 75 feet in length. Get fitted for a paddle, life jacket, and a kayak as experienced rental staff chat about proper paddling … Toxic bacteria continue to pose a threat in Lady Bird Lake, according to recent city water testing. Ad Choices. But storm swells and dam releases along certain parts of the river can make this river an attractive option for whitewater kayakers as well. Where the city straddles the Colorado River, 2 dams mark the upstream and downstream ends of Lady Bird Lake, the focus of outdoor activity in downtown Austin. "I know that in every other river in the state, I'm allowed to," says Sean Mahan, one of the people who asked about the swimming ban. Modern sea kayaks usually have two or more internal bulkheads Some models can accommodate two or sometimes three paddlers. And even for long-time Texas residents, you might find a few of these spots to be hidden gems worth exploring. I love Austin and have been wanting to go kayaking down Lady Bird Lake since I moved to Texas two years ago. Story by Celi Trepanier. Lady Bird Lake provides a tremendous recreational resource for the state�s capitol, including hike and bike trails surrounding the shoreline as well as paddling, rowing, and fishing in the lake. And it also boasts some of the clearest, cleanest waters in the entire Lone Star State. Why aren't we allowed to swim in Lady Bird Lake? True to its name (Frio means ‘cold’ in Spanish), this river is a great place to escape to during the hottest months of the year. Austin Rowing Club was recently featured on a radio talk show. While there were no toxins found in the latest sampling of the algae (Oct, 2020), the City of Austin is still recommending that all pet owners do not let their pets/dogs swim or drink the water in Lady Bird Lake… They’re open everyday from 6 a.m. until dusk. "I threw my dog's ball in the water in 2004 and everybody freaked out, telling me that I was going to get arrested and that the water wasn't clean and that I had to get out. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement (updated as of 1/1/21) and Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement (updated as of 1/1/21) and Your California Privacy Rights. Pick up your kayak on the shores of Lady Bird Lake, a manmade reservoir that helps supply Austin with drinking water and prevent flooding of the Colorado River. star-5. For those of you that are new to the Texas Hill Country region, it might surprise you to find so many great paddling spots close by. One of many ways to access Lady Bird Lake is from Zilker Metropolitan Park and Barton Springs Pool. During most times of the year, the wide, slow-moving river offers calm, easy paddling for all skill levels. So check out two of the highest-rated Good Sam RV parks in your neck of the woods! Shot on a GoPro Hero 5 Black. Brazos River. Required to Rent Equipment: You can do so here. 122 Reviews. CLEAN, DRAIN AND DRY your boat, trailer, livewells/bait buckets, and other gear before traveling to another water body. From Austin down to San Antonio, there is no shortage of lakes and rivers in Texas Hill Country to enjoy your preferred flavor of kayaking. It’s also situated a little further down on the Guadalupe River, which offers its own paddling opportunities. Embrace Your Sense of Adventure in Sunny Southern California, 8 Kayaking Hot Spots in Texas Hill Country, Tips for Planning Fun Family Fishing Trips, 9 Destinations for Fast and Furious Whitewater Adventure, Tips for Taking Your RV Out of Winter Storage. It’s fed by an underground spring that keeps its water at a cool and refreshing temperature year-round. And if you arrive in Austin anytime from early March to early September, take a sunset paddle near Congress Bridge to witness the emergence of one of North America’s largest urban bat colonies. If you want to get away for a little RV staycation in Central Texas, you’ll probably want to roll your rig somewhere with water nearby. With this 416-acre reservoir on the Colorado River, you’re bound to find a breathtaking view of the city not far from the busy downtown streets while kayaking in Austin. Visitors can also paddle board, unfortunately for me, I have no coordination, or balance whatsoever. Live Love Paddle features Austin kayak rentals and Austin paddle board rentals on Lady Bird Lake (also known as Town Lake). In terms of amenities on-site, you’ll be able to enjoy outdoor games, nature trails, a recreation hall and game room, a swimming pool and hot tub, and more! The photos were taken at 5:22 p.m. on July 6. Texas Rowing Center is located on the Hike and Bike Trail on Lady Bird Lake. An easy two and a half-hour guided tour on Lady Bird Lake is the perfect way to end the day in Austin. Enter nighttime kayaking on Austin’s Lady Bird Lake. The resort also offers WiFi, an enclosed dog run, heated pool and hot tub, recreation hall, and much more! Rowing Dock are located west of MoPac on the south shore of the lake, entrance off Stratford Drive in Zilker Park. Also popular for tubing and casual river floats during the summer months, the narrower Guadalupe River boasts some great rapid sections for whitewater kayakers. The best way to experience Austin is from the water. Lake Kayaking: Photo: Pete Nowicki/Unsplash. There are a total of more than 180 sites available at this park with full hookups and the ability to accommodate rigs up to 90 feet in length. And the spring-fed nature of this river keeps it cool and refreshing when the Central Texas temperatures reach their extreme highs. His running tally of RV road trips across America stands at five and counting. Situated just five miles outside of the center of San Marcos, the Pecan Park Riverside RV Park sits on the banks of the San Marcos River. Lady Bird Lake (Town Lake) Kayak, Paddle & Canoe Rentals Roaring 40ºs Kayaking offers tailored adventures to suit your time-frame and experience level. Nighttime kayaking provides the standard joys of kayaking—feeling the water splash against your … Paddle Austin provides the best tours and rentals for all your paddle sports needs, including stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking Lady Bird Lake! They teach sculling and sweep rowing and also offer youth classes and camps. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. If you would like to make a donation in support of Austin Rowing club and its staff. Condé Nast Traveler does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Of course, there are many places to launch a kayak on this river, depending on just where you are in Central Texas. All rights reserved. Photo: Getty Images. Most people are unaware that it’s illegal to swim in Lady Bird Lake. Whether you’re into recreational paddling, kayak fishing or whitewater kayaking, the best kayaking destinations in this area of Texas provide opportunities for paddlers of all experience levels. A cool season view of Lady Bird Lake. Lady Bird Lake attracts paddlers nearly every day of the week. If you are planning on spending some time in Austin, make sure you visit Lady Bird Lake for hiking, walking, biking, canoeing or kayaking. Spanning a total of about 840 miles, the Brazos River is one of the longest rivers in North America. All Rights Reserved. But the (Texas) Colorado River is the longest river in the state and its wide, peaceful waters are perfect for beginning paddlers. We also feature a super fun daytime photo friendly Urban Kayak tour, a full moon night tour with live music on Lady Bird Lake's only island, and special event tours to see fireworks on the 4th of July and listen to ACL from the water! Great for families, pets, and outdoor adventurists. Congress Bridge Bat Watching Tours Urban Kayak Tour of Downtown Austin Full Moon Kayak and Live Music Tour While this river can get really crowded with tubers and swimmers during the summer and fall, it also offers great paddling during the off-season. By Allison Bagley, Jenna Scatena, and Mandy Ellis. In fact, it flows all the way through the Lone Star State to the Gulf of Mexico at its southern terminus. To revisit this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories. Condé Nast Traveler may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. We are located in Austin and are within driving distance to many smaller towns such as Bastrop, Del Valle, Lago Vista, … Kayaking is a popular recreational activity that can offer breathtaking scenic views while providing unexpected outdoor adventures. Renting a kayak or paddle board in Austin is a fun, healthy, cool way to see The city from a unique perspective. And if you arrive in Austin anytime from early March to early September, take a sunset paddle near Congress Bridge to witness the emergence of one of North America’s largest urban bat colonies. Tucker Ballister is an outdoor guide by day and freelance writer by night. And for the most experienced and adventurous paddlers out there, this river also hosts the annual Texas Water Safari! Canyon Lake is located about 30 minutes northwest of the city of New Braunfels. It is here, that you can launch your own personal boat, or rent a kayak, sup or canoe from Zilker Park … Enter your email address below and get the latest posts delivered straight to your inbox. Kayaking Lady Bird Lake in Downtown Austin, Texas. This reservoir is the second-largest of the Highland Lakes in Central Texas, so there’s plenty of shorelines and open water to explore. public access for fishing Lady Bird Lake. And, no, it’s not the same as the one that calls the Rocky Mountains its birthplace. Draining water is required by law and … Join us for a cool evening out on the water to watch the sun say goodnight to the Austin skyline. In addition to river access, you can also enjoy a heated pool and hot tub, a riverfront beach area, outdoor games, nature trails, and more on the premises. While whitewater paddlers can enjoy up to Class III rapids, there are also calm sections of the river that are perfect for recreational paddlers. There’s a healthy bonus, too: the sport is an enjoyable way to sneak in both physical activity and a bit of relaxation. Kayak and Paddleboard Rentals launching from the boathouse on November 6th. Rowing Dock offers group rentals and tours. Austin is well-known as one of Texas’ most entertaining cities, but it’s also got plenty for the outdoor adventurer to explore. Anna Eulo sent us a couple photos of an alligator — yes, an alligator — hanging out on a small spot in Lady Bird Lake near Festival Beach. © 2021 Condé Nast. In renaming the lake, the City Council recognized Johnson for her dedication to beautifying the lake and her efforts to create a recreational trail system around the lake's shoreline. A memorial at Auditorium Shores honors the late bluesman Stevie Ray Vaughan. Whether you have your own vessels or need to rent a kayak, canoe, or SUP, you’ll find it along the shores of downtown Austin, Texas bordered by landmarks like Zilker Park and the Stevie Ray Vaughan Memorial. Free parking is available in the park with direct access to Barton Creek. Embark on a peaceful paddle on Lady Bird Lake with your friendly … Austin's Watershed Protection Department says it's still finding toxic blooms of algae at Red Bud Isle, Barton Creek and downstream from Barton Springs Pool – and that it … In 2007 the lake was renamed Lady Bird Lake to honor Lady Bird Johnson, the former First Lady of the United States and a long-time resident of the Austin area. Colorado River near Austin. This is a multi-use lake that also offers plenty of opportunities for boating, camping, and shoreline fishing. If you’re ready for a day of kayaking or paddle boarding, come on out to rent a kayak or board on Lady Bird Lake (Town Lake) in Austin, Texas. Occupancy: Up to 12 people Kayak & Paddleboard Rentals on Lady Bird Lake If you’re looking for a fun and relaxing way to see Austin, a paddleboard or kayak rental on Lady Bird Lake is the perfect way to discover the landmarks and skyline of the Capital City. Kids can ride in a kayak.Dogs and other pets are permitted at this time. I finally took some time to drive up to Austin to rent a kayak from Live Love Paddle. The 416-acre (169-hectare) Lady Bird Lake, at the northeastern end of Zilker Metropolitan Park, anchors a host of outdoor recreational opportunities in downtown Austin. Please note, given the history of poisonous toxins found in the blue-green algae in Lady Bird Lake, if you decide to bring your pet, you are doing so at your own risk. Pick up your kayak on the shores of Lady Bird Lake, a manmade reservoir that helps supply Austin with drinking water and prevent flooding of the Colorado River. The boathouse also has a cafe with a great view of Lady Bird Lake. From Lamar Bridge back to Congress Avenue Kayaks. And if you’re looking for a specific recommendation, Cedar Point Recreation Area is one of the largest pieces of public land on the lake and offers more than three miles of shoreline. Rowing Dock is Austin's go-to spot for kayak, stand up paddleboard and canoe rentals on Lady Bird Lake. Lady Bird Lake (named after former-First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson) provides great kayaking and paddleboarding opportunities year-round. Lady Bird Lake (named after former-First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson) provides great kayaking and paddleboarding opportunities year-round. Lady Bird Lake offers endless ways to spend a day on the water. The resort itself features more than 90 full hookup sites and they accommodate rigs up to 80 feet in length. Photo: dimitrisvetsikas1969. This river offers a little bit of everything, including kayak fishing, recreational paddling and sections of whitewater. RVs parked near the Guadalupe River. Get fitted for a paddle, life jacket, and a kayak as experienced rental staff chat about proper paddling … Are n't we allowed to swim in Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin, Texas are unaware it. 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