TOP 10 KAYAKING DESTINATIONS IN UTAH
Utah gets a great rap for being an endless outdoor hub, boasting dozens of amazing state parks, lakes, and camping locations. Even though it may look bleak outside now, Spring is right around the corner and so this is the perfect time to get your planning on. With your portable Folding Boat, there is no body of water out of reach! Let’s head out to Utah and explore some of these top picks:
1 RED FLEET STATE PARK
With a 750-acre reservoir Red Fleet State Park is a great spot to pull over and enjoy a paddle. The picturesque reservoir offers everything from fishing to boating to kayaking with a campground close by. Red Fleet is also famous for the numerous dinosaur tracks throughout the area. The tracks are roughly 200 million years old and can be reached by hiking a 1.5-mile trail that is somewhat strenuous because of its several uphill and downhill sections. Local Tip: Hike in the early morning or late afternoon as the tracks are hard to see in direct sunlight.
2 DEER CREEK DAM AND RESERVOIR
This Reservoir is a great place to get some gentle paddling in without too much of a crowd. Enjoy spectacular views of Mount Timpanogos, the second highest mountain in Utah's Wasatch Range. Timpanogos rises to a whopping 11,752 ft above sea level! Since Deer Creek State Park is a watershed dogs are only allowed in the campground, so you will have to make plans for your furry friend if venturing out. Along with kayaking, there are also plenty of camping options and even a ziplining adventure you can sign up for in advance!
3 MIRROR LAKE
Mirror Lake is a popular fishing destination for those looking to catch species of trout such as the rainbow, brook, and tiger. Located high in the Uinta Mountains of Utah, this area features a campground, picnic facilities, and a boat ramp. The lake's name comes from the near-perfect reflection of the surrounding mountains and trees seen from the shore. With the peaks in the background and a beautiful day ahead you can’t go wrong in this area!
4 THE GREEN RIVER
You can’t have a kayaking list in the west without listing the vast Green River! The Green River is 730 miles long, beginning in the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming and flowing through Wyoming and Utah for most of its course, except for 40 miles into western Colorado. The flowing river will require some extra precautions such as a GPS, map, or even a guide to make sure you don’t end up too far down stream!
5 BEAR LAKE
Bear Lake in Utah holds some of the most beautiful clear water in the area. The Lake is on the Utah/Idaho border and is a nice 52-minute drive from Logan. The lake has been called the "Caribbean of the Rockies" for its unique turquoise-blue color, which is due to the reflection of limestone deposits suspended in the lake.
While this is a beautiful spot to launch your boat, know that tourists tend to flock here in the summer. The standard rules apply: show up early and leave early to avoid traffic and congestion! Once you are out on the water you can easily space yourself and enjoy all the freedoms the water has to offer. Some good places to launch from are the Glen Canyon primitive beach camping area, Lone Rock, and Stanton Creek. If you can handle some people, take a break at the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area to enjoy beaches and endless network of canyons.
7 SILVER LAKE FLAT RESERVOIR
From seclusion and mountains to endless fishing, the Silver Lake Flat Reservoir is a great option. Silver Lake Flat Reservoir sits 15 minutes past Tibble Fork and has less crowds. Although the body of water is only accessible by a dirt road, Silver Lake Flat is a beautiful and peaceful place to kayak. Go on, get some dirt on that vehicle and get out into the thick of it! Bring your fishing gear as there is an abundance of trout in the area.
8 PROVO RIVER
The Provo River has two main branches: North Fork Provo River and South Fork Provo River. This is one of Utah’s 'Urban Fisheries' where you are likely to catch rainbow trout, brown trout, and mountain whitefish. Brown and rainbow trout reach record lengths in the Provo, with a typical fish running 18 inches or bigger! In some areas, the Provo offers 3,000 or more trout per mile. Some sections are now private property so watch where you paddle and remember to check the areas rules and regulations before heading out.
9 THE MILD FISHER TOWERS SECTION OF THE COLORADO RIVER
Looking for the classic family-friendly kayaking trip out in Moab? The landscape in this area is a must-see. This section of the Colorado River is perfect for the entire family to paddle around in and enjoy the day. There are even mild Class I/II rapids that offer a fun peek into the whitewater world! Local Tip: always check the water levels before your trip and check with the local guides to plan your route!
10 UTAH LAKE
Last but not least you have the beautiful Utah Lake. This shallow freshwater lake lies in Utah Valley, surrounded by the Provo-Orem metropolitan area. With roughly 148 sq. miles, Utah Lake provides fishing access for channel catfish, walleye, white bass, black bass, and several species of panfish. With an average water temperature of 75 degrees, Utah Lake provides an excellent outlet for swimming, boating, and kayaking. Traveling in a van or RV? The RV campground has 31 sites, complete with water and power hookups! With endless options it is easy to see why this lake is called Utah Lake.
Wherever you venture, bring your portable kayak to avoid those rental fees and get out on the water in no time. The freedom to paddle without having to worry about returning at a certain time is pure bliss. Happy traveling!