Best Places to Kayak for Beginners are Class I and II waters. To learn Kayaking techniques as a new paddler, you are advised to try low tide lakes and rivers. Safe water is necessary for the betterment of your skills before you venture into high turbulence oceans and rivers.
Oceans are prone to high waves that requires special expertise to maneuver which is possible only after several practice on the low current water bodies. For example, a group of paddlers rented Kayaks to enjoy the afternoon ocean breeze.
They landed without mooring their kayaks only to be surprised by a 30 foot wave. What happened next was not good news for the outdoor companies as they had to watch the rented kayaks drift upstream. This can happen to any paddler but an experienced kayaker knows well that you must secure the boat once in the beach or at the river banks.
Best Places to Kayak for Beginners Are Low Tides and Currents
Many a times, currents are invisible but has great impact on Kayaks. As a beginner, avoid ocean as undercurrents changes direction in correlation to the tides. When this happens, you are likely to experience two scenarios, being slow down or you get drifted far from your known location. Once you lose your ocean bearings rescue operations becomes difficult. Moreover, you can end up drowning.
Tides amplitude can sometimes rise above 6 meters and venturing into such weather is subjecting yourself to unknown sufferings. However, if you want to feel the oceans and seas, great caution is required in areas with surge of one or less meters. As they are known to cause dangerous waves.
Kayak in areas where you can maintain a speed of 2 to 3 Knots that is 3.5 to 5.5Km/h. To achieve this, find lakes and rivers with the currents measuring between 1 to 4 knots, which are average for new paddlers. But avoid currents with over 4 knots to stay safe and this will help you enjoy your kayaking voyage.
Avoid areas with unpredictable winds
To Kayak safely, consider areas with prevailing and constant winds that can be easily predicted. As indicated, wind has a drift effect similar to underwater currents. When sudden change in wind or windblast occurs, the effects are observed in provocation of strong winds. Strong winds can cause your kayak drift from the shores but can also flip your kayaks within seconds.
As a starter, best places to kayak are areas with light winds measuring 15 knots (28km/h) or less. Other areas to try are moderate wind zone with 15 -19 knots (28 to 35 km/h) but great caution is needed for something above this.
Avoid Cold Water Areas
Now that you are ready to go kayaking, consider water temperature before lowering your Kayak for the trip. Best water temperature for new kayakers should be above 80 However, these water conditions are unfavorable but Kayakers wearing dry suit can tolerate. Anything below 80 can provoke hypothermia within seconds. For more information about Kayak hypothermia condition and how to cope up when attacked please refer to How to deal with Kayak hypothermia article.
You have heard of this expression before that prevention is better than curing and should always be your associate. As a new kayaker interested in day long excursion find relevant information about the local weather pattern, read maps, equip yourself with radio communication devices, and emergency procedures besides navigational skills.
Best Places to Kayak for Beginners are Zone 1
Oceans, Seas and other water bodies are divided into different zones by various authorities, For Example, and Transport Canada safety guide divide section of the sea into various types of zones depending on the difficulty to navigate. The authority has delineated zones into I, II, III, and IV.
For a kayak beginner, zone I with low level of difficulty is recommended. This zone comprised of small lakes and streams with low flow rate. Besides, the zone topography does not present obstacle for first time paddlers during orientation or when by themselves kayaking. Moreover, you have the ability to shelter yourself during rains and heavy winds. In addition, there are easy and numerous landing sites and beaches.
Designated zone I have acceptable water temperature ranging above 18°C but always soar higher during warm weather season, such as summer. Moreover, water current are conducive for starters varying 0 to 2 knots and as a result you don’t worry being drift off the shoes. In addition, fetch is limited due to water sheltering with favorable winds devoid of any problem. But don’t sit pretty that everything will run smoothly.
These days weather are unpredictable and be prepared for any worst scenario. In large lakes and oceans, all zone might be encountered by paddlers hence you should be aware of the area you are going for Kayaking. While in Canada head to Cape Broyle, here novice can enjoy zone I at the head of the bay and it is also within reach of communities and several and easy landings. But beware not to advance to mouth of the bay which comprise of a Zone IV conditions.
Others are the Inland waters of New Brunswick in the Atlantic region, lakes in the province of QUÉBEC, and rivers such as, Ottawa, the Richelieu and the Saint-Maurice are consider suitable for novice and inexperience Kayakers getting started. In Ontario, Prairie, and Northern Regions, have the lower Red Deer River and the milk river which are calm like many lakes. These are zone I water bodies with few technicalities to new kayakers.
Best Places to Kayak for Beginners Pacific Region
In British Columbia and Yukon novice paddlers can try their skills in Wood Lake, Elk Lake and Williams Lake which are largely inhabited. Other small lakes and rivers in the area provide perfect place to try all the skills and techniques.