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Kayaking advice needed.

Sherman Oaks, CA
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Kayaking advice needed.

My husband, 14 year old son and I will be visiting Monterey this weekend. We are interested in kayaking. Although we are all physically fit, we aren't experienced kayakers. I am leaning towards a tour. I would love recommendations for the best company and any other info. We are excited for the visit!!!

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Monterey
Monterey
Monterey County, CA
Pacific Grove...
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1. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

Adventures by the Sea is a very good company that offers tours and kayak rentals. If you go with them in Monterey, you'll go out on the Bay. However, if you don't mind a 25-minute drive north, I HIGHLY recommend kayaking on Elkhorn Slough. It's an estuary, so the water is flat and calm, and it's teeming with wildlife--otters, seals, sea lions, all sorts of birds. The company there is Monterey Bay Kayaks, which offers two-hour tours of the Slough. For beginners, it's ideal, and you will see so many wonderful animals. In fact, since the water is so calm, you could consider going out on your own if you're comfortable with that. You just have to make sure that you keep a respectful distance from the animals:The otters are so darn cute, it's very tempting to get as close as you can! Have fun!

Edited: 26 August 2013, 19:00
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Monterey
Monterey
Monterey County, CA
Monterey Bay Kayaks
Monterey Bay Kayaks
688 Reviews
Monterey, CA
Santa Cruz...
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2. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

I completely agree. That will be a kayaking adventure to remember, rather than just paddling out into the Bay. Also, you will not run into rough water, as you might on the bay.

Lewiston, California
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3. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

As an Experienced Kayaker I urge you to join a tour & Wear life Jackets. A dear friend of mine drowned in Coastal Waters last year. He refused to wear a Life Jacket as they are "uncomfortable".

Camp Sherman, Oregon
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4. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

Good advice. Thirteen years ago I took a class on Nehalem Bay up here. The instructors thought we looked like a qualified bunch and took us straight across the bay to the state park instead of up the calmer Nehalem river. I was nervous the whole way, fearing I would tip over in the choppy water.

Just this past Saturday, I made the mistake of going back into Netarts Bay close to the mouth at nearing high tide. I attempted to navigate around a small, choppy sandbar close to the mouth of the bay. I went around the wrong side and for the very first time in thirteen years of bay kayaking I capsized. Luckily being close to the sand bar I was only in waist high rapidly incoming high tide water. It took every ounce of my strength to keep my 19' narrow, shallow but heavy plastic sea kayak from completely filling with water. After struggling for awhile to keep it afloat I had to flag down some crabbers in a boat to come over and save me. After getting it aboard I had to muster everything I had to hoist myself up and into the boat.

Big lesson learned again. The previous weekend three capized kayakers had to be saved at the same mouth of the bay.

So taking the easier tour for your first time might be your best bet!

Bay Area, CA
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5. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

We rented sit-on-top kayaks from Monterey Bay Kayaks at the Elkhorn Slough location a few weeks ago, and it was great. We did it on our own (my wife and I + girls 13 and 10yrs, total novices). A tour might have helped with a couple of things, number one it was easy for use to slowly drift/paddle fairly deep into the slough, which made coming back quite a workout due to winds and tides. There's a lot of animals near the mouth of the slough, and we probably would have been better off staying in that area. Second, there were some interesting side channels, but being fairly cautious we didn't venture into them.

For what it's worth, the animals were definitely more active earlier in the morning (9am-ish when we launched) than later (closer to noon when we finally got back).

Edited: 27 August 2013, 03:25
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Monterey Bay Kayaks
Monterey Bay Kayaks
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Monterey, CA
Lewiston, California
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6. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

Yeah my wife & I sold our "sit in" kayaks getting larger, heavier but far more stable "sit on top" versions. Mine is virtually impossible to tip but you certainly get wet so I dress appropriately.

Sherman Oaks, CA
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7. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

Thank you for the info. It looks as though Monterey Bay Kayaks also works out of the Bay.

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Monterey Bay Kayaks
Monterey Bay Kayaks
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Monterey, CA
Sherman Oaks, CA
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48 posts
7 reviews
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8. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

We were leaning towards renting, but after reading all he posts, I am thinking a tour is the way to go. Thank you!

Santa Cruz...
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9. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

Have a great time.

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10. Re: Kayaking advice needed.

A tour would be fun! We rented with Adventures by the Sea and were very pleased with their services. They outfit you in life jackets and give a quick paddle lesson before you venture out. We had a group of 5 people and everyone had a great time. :)