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Paddling Under the Stars: Tips for Paddling at Night

The Absolute Joy of Night Time Kayaking and Seeing Nature in a New Way

Night time kayaking has become incredibly popular in the past few years. There is nothing quite like the experience of paddling under the moon and stars, in a natural setting or a more urban landscape. And, paddling at night offers some unique benefits over daytime kayaking.

With fewer people on the water and no need to protect yourself from the sun’s rays, night paddling lets you really enjoy a new connection to nature, the water and your kayak itself. Whether you make it a romantic outing or a group adventure with friends, you’re certain to find paddling under the stars a thoroughly fulfilling pastime. 

As with any water activity, night paddling deserves a bit of respect when it comes to safety and comfort. Here’s a few considerations to keep in mind.

Where to Go

Even for the more experienced paddler, it’s probably not wise to explore waters you’ve not already paddled in the day time. Your familiar and favorite spots are best, provided they are calmer waters and visibility is good.

Urban paddling can be perfect for night paddling because of surrounding city lights, calmer inlets and marinas and being close to assistance, should you ever need it.

But, that doesn’t mean your favorite small lagoon or pond is off limits. Just make sure you’re familiar with a particular body of water before venturing out at night.

What to Bring

In addition to your regular gear (personal floatation device, communications device, etc.), it’s smart to bring at least one strong light source. This helps you to see - and be seen - while on the water. 

Solar lights that are also water-resistant make the best light sources for paddling at night. Oru Kayak offers an inflatable solar light that can make your experience safer and plenty of fun.

Keeping and Eye to the (Night) Sky

It’s important to understand weather and tide patterns before heading out at night. If the area you’ve chosen is prone to floods and flows at night time, it’s best to pick another location. Weather apps and coast reports can be helpful in getting the most up-to-the-minute information. Always pick a night and a location that is calm and somewhat predictable.

Make it a Trip to Remember

Kayaking with a buddy is always a good idea. So, why not bring a bunch? Night time paddling was absolutely made for friends and is the ideal outing for small groups. Having your friends (or significant other) with you will make your experiences more memorable and entertaining. Plus, with safety in numbers, you’re sure to feel more confident out on the water at night.

If you’re still not entirely sure, check local kayaking tours in your area. Chances are good you’ll find guided night time paddle tours nearby. Going once or twice can help boost your confidence at night and allow you to relax and enjoy yourself even more.

Oru has a full range of kayaks that are perfect for every level of skill. Check out the lineup here.