40 & Retired (rambling ahead)

I’m 40, retired, and don’t yet know anyone local that kayaks and has free time to paddle, much less go on extended paddling adventures. I’m new to it, but pretty much down for living in my kayak and traveling the southern coast where its warm and would be 100% content if I never paddle any whitewater. Or even rapids for that matter… LOL (might be the newbie mindset) I live between Columbia and Aiken South Carolina and am looking for an adventure pal that also loves paddling enough to set off and paddle camp an easy river long distance. Maybe even to the ocean, or to Florida, or to Brazil… ok ok, I’m getting carried away dreaming. Lol But the thought is so exciting!

The back story…
The year before last, I started cycling, then discovered bikepacking, started via fat bike, then a fat recumbent trike and loved it so much I decided to travel via recumbent trike to Florida or further. I “trained” every day and got up to about 40+ miles every day, 7 days a week unless it was raining. I had my kit pretty perfect and with years of primitive camping/bushcraft experience, I was ready to start traveling and like many others, let the “pandemic” chaos put a halt on those plans.

While waiting out the chaos of the world around me, I learned about navigable waterways, that they are everywhere and realized that I could literally travel via water and paddle instead of pedaling. (My knees singing praises to this idea haha Bad knees/ankle would be my most likely downfall with cycling.)
I started getting little boats and learned some valuable titling/registration lessons, was trying to get fancy and bigger which meant motors had to be involved Yada Yada. Before long, I was searching for a fixer upper sailboat to liveaboard full-time because I could accomplish that for the same price I was having to spend. Sigh… I decided to start over and keep it simple like I originally planned. Purchased the cheapest SOT Kayak I could find and its perfect! (Maybe get a sailboat one day but I can dream of that while having my adventures right now instead of just dreaming and going nowhere, getting older.)

So here I am. Maybe its a midlife crisis or maybe I’m just crazy. I don’t know what it is, but I do know that I’m ready for a traveling adventure and it would be so awesome to share that experience with someone along the way. I’m going regardless and will be documenting the adventure as I go, but man… Sitting by the :fire: is so much better when you’re not alone.

This world is just going to keep getting crazier and crazier and I don’t want to keep letting that stop me from having the time of my life enjoying this beautiful creation thats just waiting to be explored.

I better stop typing, might have already bored some to death. Lol

Retired at 40? You need a job. I was retired at 62 and there are days at 72 I could use a job.


LOL I’ve been retired for 14 years and have heard a lot of people say the same thing, all of whom were and are still busy working towards paying off debt, all while I live debt free and enjoy my very own vacation lifestyle, but thanks for your opinion.

Your reply reminds me of several reasons why I don’t know anybody that has time to go on an adventure. lol

1 Like

You sound like a thru paddler on the Florida CT. Check out this link.


You might find a fellow adventurer at the FPTA… https://www.floridapaddlingtrails.com/...they are deep in the CT. You might be interested in their annual meeting.

1 Like

Thanks @Overstreet ! Checking those out now.

Thru paddling is definitely my kinda thing! I should have thought of that term, considering all the videos I’ve watched on thru hiking the AT. Lol Thanks for that! Those Florida paddle trails do look really fun to explore and will be in my sights for when I make it that far.

I retired 20 years ago at age 50. I have been amazed by the amount of close friends that still work full time. Some like their jobs. Some remodel the kitchen and go to France and then cannot understand how anyone could retire.

Do your adventurous travel and trips when you are young. I have learned to do a lot of solo trips. People are tangled up with work during the week, then they have family obligations and plenty of other distractions. By the time my friends have reached 70 a lot of them are wimpy and not adventurous at all. They go on one trip and get overwhelmed.

My Border Collie is my best traveling and fishing partner. She is ready to go any time. My girl likes to stay home a lot. We go on some RV trips, but she does not like boat or backpacking much.

Best of luck to you. Being young and retired is unusual in American culture. Most people will not understand your situation. I like to go out during the week. I stay home on weekends and especially holidays.


Thank you so much for the kindness and encouragement! I appreciate that my minimalist lifestyle isn’t for everyone and will always be misunderstood to the extent that I’ll remain detached from society for the most part, and I’m ok with that. I’ve been going at it solo almost every day since I got the kayak and have loved it all, even the difficulties. Company would be really awesome and while I will continue to hope to find it, I won’t let that stop me from going, just probably will wait til warmer weather before I start the long distance trips.

Thank you again, ppine! Hope you and your family have a wonderful week!

1 Like

Year ago I got divorced and met a nice girl. After awhile I asked her if she wanted to go on a canoe trip. She said sure, so we paddled the Upper Missouri R in Montana from Ft Benton to KIpp Bridge which is a little over 150 miles. We read from the Lewis and Clark Journal at night. That was back around 2000. We are still together, but she no longer likes boat trips much.

1 Like

That sounds pretty awesome! Sorry to hear that she doesn’t like boat trips anymore though.

And I thought I was doing well to retire at 56.

1 Like