Driving over the Mo-Pac bridge, or any other structure that traverses Lady Bird Lake, may compel newcomers to look down and wonder what all the people standing on surf boards or peddling furiously down the lake are doing! Austin offers unique opportunities to get out – and up – on the water, from conventional canoe or inner tube to stand up paddle boards. Below are a few of the different ways to enjoy the water features of Central Texas:
Kayaking & Canoes
Lady Bird Lake in the middle of downtown Austin, in jogging distance of Barton Creek homes, is a favorite place for paddlers of kayaks or canoes. Boats can be put into the water at one of several points along the lake or rented by the hour. Rentable kayaks come in singles, doubles, and triples, and canoes can seat two adults. Paddlers also can fish on Lady Bird Lake or just float peacefully and take in the Austin skyline. Rental locations provide private lessons, group lessons, or six-week fitness classes for people serious about their paddling. For Austinites looking to take water sports to the next level, rowing is a popular cardio workout. Interested rowers can rent boats by the hour or purchase comprehensive membership/lesson packages.
Any avid runner, walker, or biker of the Town Lake trail will pass by the water bike rental stand alongside the lake in front of the Hyatt hotel. The locally owned and operated water recreation outfitter offers water bikes rentals on Lady Bird Lake in downtown Austin, a short drive from south Austin neighborhoods like Circle C. Water bikes are a fun way to explore the lake, watch the bats take flight from the Congress Avenue Bridge, or take a moonlight ride under the stars of Texas. Swimsuits are not necessary when renting water bikes, as the aqua bikes keep peddlers dry and out of the water. A cooler fits on the back of the bikes, making the water bike a great option for spending a day out on the lake with friends. Bikers also can pedal to the Congress Avenue Bridge at sunset to wait for the 1.5 million Mexican Free-tailed bats to emerge for a night of mosquito hunting.
Stand Up Paddle Boarding
To the untrained eye, people on a stand up paddle board look like people failing to learn to surf. Luckily, this is not the case! Stand up paddle boarding is a fun way to get exercise while touring Lady Bird Lake or watching bats come out at night from under the South Congress Bridge. Some people even take their water-loving dog along for the ride. For an hourly rental fee, water enthusiasts can glide alongside Lake Austin waterfront homes. With relatively good balance, staying dry and out of the water is very likely, if desired. The wide boards are also suited for sitting and enjoying a cold beverage while drifting in the middle of the lake. Local stand up paddle board outfitter SUP ATX has made waves as the worldwide leader in gear for lakes, rivers, and surfing areas. The sport started in Austin, and now people can be seen paddling upright across bodies of water throughout the world. Since Austin is the de facto “SUP Capital of the World,” every Austinite should give this fun sport a try.
Also see Austin Outdoor Adventures.
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