How do you find your paddling partners?

If you paddle with a few trusted friends or family members then I call that a pod. Pods can paddle together on familar streams or travel to new areas and paddle together There are many advantages to paddling in a pod. Y ou already know or have some knowledge of each other’s skill sets, habits, and needs .

Many of my pod members came from the west virginia wildwater association, a paddle america club, and its message board. I also reach out to other paddling clubs to find new folks to paddle with. I’ve paddled with paddling club members in Wisconsin (mad city paddlers), Arkansas ( Ozark paddlers), and in TN/NC (the Carolina Canoe Club and APES). With clubs some kind of dues are required.

Message boards like this forum have also been a source. I’ve enjoyed meeting folks from pcom andlong ago I dabbled a tiny bit with forum of the Monocacy Canoe Club without actually joining the club.

A more recent addition is facebook groups which tend to function like a meet up. This has worked for me in TX, and FL. Often locals have the best knowledge and are a great resource.

And sometimes I just chat people up in campgrounds, put ins or take outs, to find paddle and shuttle partners.

How do you find paddling partners?


Paddle with an attractive woman and guys will show up. A fact based on my experiences. I sure do miss her.

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I paddle with friends and family, but they are carefully selected. Some people have too much ego to paddle with and some are just not good at being part of a team. I have been leading groups for over 50 years, but now only lead small groups, 4 or less.

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The Dallas Down River Club is a fairly tight knit group as well. We have a large membership of about 150 with a core of about 25-30 with that have been together for over 25 years or more. I would trust just about any of them under any conditions and over the years we have put that to the test. This core group mentors the larger group and we are careful about vetting new members skill level before bring them on more demanding trips. It is nice to know you have people you can count on.

It really depends what type of trip I am doing – flatwater, whitewater, tripping or sea kayak. Like you I have a pod of close paddling friends for flatwater and whitewater trips, and most of those folks are also river trippers. It’s pretty easy to send out an email and get 4-5 of us together. I can’t say that I have spent enough time in my sea kayak to have developed a pod of sea kayaking friends – need to work on that.

I paddle regularly with my local club – Rhode Island Canoe & Kayak Association – on flatwater and (to a lesser extent) sea kayak trips. For whitewater trips I paddle with a couple of different AMC chapters – personally, I like the structure of a formal trip, and I like the groups. There are also a couple of good Facebook groups for “meet-up” whitewater trips that are frequented by people I know, and who know me – at least by reputation.

At this point in my paddling life I’m not looking to paddle with a lot of new people – I’m happy with the old crew. I do need to spend more time in my sea kayak, and that is going to mean paddling with new people.

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Usually people come up to us or we start talking to them but it’s always on the water. We meet lots of dog people with SUPs. We paddle out to private beaches and usually it’s other paddlers letting their dogs run off leash. Quite a few times I have CD owners approach to say that they own one and like it. In Gig Harbor, you meet people loading and unloading. We have never been on FB so I’m sure we miss a lot but I need the flexibility to tell white lies about where we are :wink: Can’t imagine family and friends cross checking our whereabouts, that has always kept us off.

Oh, also people have taken our picture from ashore and given them to us and I take pictures of people like these also. Then we exchange Linked In etc.

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Meet Up .com… (Not a dating app)
Enter kayak and your area and the local groups will show up. You can get an idea of type of kayaker by the pictures.

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I’ve been checking the animal shelters


Look down into the water. :laughing:

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Short answer…I don’t. I paddle solo 99% of the time; ocean & island hopping. I enjoy the solitude & ability to go where &when I want. I get my “ paddle buddy “ fix when I take numerous skills courses throughout the year.


How do I find my paddlin’ partners?
By canvassing shelters of the streets,
where taking paws in just because
makes entries for wet feets (and feats).

Although was time I was inclined
with humankind to truck.
So occasionally still I float my chill
and bang heads with 'em Ducks.

Play’n that String of pretty women? Good Luck.
(says a pretty one’s married schmuck)

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