Let's get out on the water! Where to kayak in and around the Sound

Have you been waiting all summer long to get out on the water in a kayak? What are you waiting for? It's almost Labor Day! Let's Go!

August 14, 2018
Mom and child in a kayak

© Famveldman | Dreamstime.com

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In case you haven't noticed, we have a lot of water around here. We're surrounded by lakes, rivers, Puget Sound, ponds . . .  you know what I'm talking about. It's why we're glad we live here instead of Kansas. (Well, that may not be the only reason, but it's one.)

Anyway, one of the best ways to bond with all that water is with a kayak. You're about as close to the surface of the water without actually being in it and, if you know what you're doing, you won't wind up in it, either. (More about that in a minute.)

So where's the best place to kayak around the Sound? Experienced kayakers have their faves. I'm a city guy, so I'm a big fan of Lake Union. There's lots to see, from floating homes to the Seattle skyline. You're in the middle of other kayakers, paddle boarders, pleasure boaters, tour boats, and, just to keep it exciting, seaplanes taking off and landing pretty much constantly. I love all of that activity on a sunny day, but for some people the energy of city is too much -- they need solitude and quiet.

For that, you might need to get ambitious and head up to the San Juan Islands, where you can poke around inlets and islets, and maybe even spot a whale or a harbor seal.

One of the best parts of kayaking here is that we have a great infrastructure -- places to rent, lots of opportunities for lessons and guided tours, and ample spots to put the kayak in the water if you bring your own.

I found two super helpful stories about kayaking around here:

Where to Kayak in Seattle descirbes half a dozen great places in Seattle and Tacoma where you can hit the water, and it gives you a good rundown on places to rent, too.

Paddles Up! Here are the absolute best places to kayak around Seattle covers a little more terriroty, from Lake Union to Rattlesnake Lake and the San Juans.

Wherever you go, do it soon! I mean, you can kayak any time of the year, but late summer/early fall are perfect for getting close to the water around here. 

Have fun, don't forget your flotation device, and remember what I used to tell my son when we spent a year near the water on Vashon Island . . .  He was younger and very nervous about going out and I reminded him that a kayak might tip over, but it's never going to sink.And then I stepped in the kayak, tipped it over, and dumped him in the icy waters of Puget Sound. Still trying to work through that one with him . . . .