Jacksonville paddling

Is anyone familiar with paddling in Jacksonville FL?? What are the best places to go there? and also what are the biggest outfitters and kayak dealers in the area?

kayaking the wonderful Jacksonville area
Greetings dunsky1476

I don’t know where to start! First of all, look at our web site, fska.org. This will give you some info about our kayak club. We are a very active club of over one hundred members. We paddle all over Florida and adjoining states. We also paddle the many areas of Jax., and there are so many wonderful places here to paddle. Do you live in the Jax area? Do you like open water or lakes and rivers? As I am a terrible typist feel free to call me or any of our members listed on the web page. We are all fanatics and will eagerly fill you in on all the paddling spots. You are also invited to come on any of our upcoming trips, just decide which trip might suit you. Franklin 904 962 3909

hey there
Hey there Franklin,

I don’t live in jacksonville yet but will be sure to give you a call when i do. I was really interested in paddling around Cumberland Island but now I really don’t want to be attacked by a shark. I was also trying to figure out where the best places are to go yak fishing. where do most go up there? thanks for the info

Sharks and Fishing
Don’t worry about the sharks. We see them alot but they don’t bother us. Cumberland Island is a great place to paddle and there are many ways to get there. Go to the fska web site and get Dana Decker’s email and phone number. Dana is one of our best paddlers. He’s also been paddling for a long long time. He’s been everywhere in the Jax area. Dana is a big kayak fisherman. He uses his 16 ft. Tarpon sit on top. He is very nice and very helpful. Call us when you get here.


Cumberland Island
Some really neat history with cumberland Island, imagine the native indians with an average height of 7’ feet tall, a Kennedy’s wedding, original settlers, (I think it was the wife of a Carnegie) were of the Coleman camping equipment company or back in that day the stoves & lights.

Might try the National Park Service also and there is a nice paddling store in the tiny little town also.


But where is your big outfitter superstore in Jacksonville? where is the biggest outfitter at that has the biggest selection of kayaks new or used?

Jax Outfitters
Hi there. Living in Jax, I don’t know of anyplace that I’d call a superstore. Black Creek Outfitters carries a few nice boats, mostly Necky and Wilderness Systems. They’re more of a general outdoors store, though. My personal favorite is a wreck of a store called Pier 17 on the westside. This place is a neat freak’s worst nightmare, but they carry Current Designs, Dagger, Old Town and Bell Canoes, not to mention a large stock of Swift paddles (sweet), and anything you could ever possibly need for your sailboat or yacht. Best part: Give 'em 5 bucks and they’ll give you 10% off anything in the store (except those $3k kevlar boats, of course). This place is a local legend. The old woman who owns it is blind as a bat (she’ll ask you what the total on the cash register is), but she knows where everything in the place is. There’s a West Marine less than a block away, but it’s boring compared to this place. It’s absolutely bizarre. I highly recommend it.

hope yer not planning for this weekend!

where exactly on the westside is this pier 17 located at? why does she think giving her 5 dollars will help her out by giving 10% off everything? Is this in a building or a trailer or some other kind of structure to find?

Happy to see this thread!
I’m also in Jacksonville and just bought kayaks for myself and my parents.

Sadly, I haven’t had the chance to try them out yet. Between hurricanes and family obligations fate seems to be conspiring against me.

I’m planning for a nice safe “get to know the boats” trip to Goldhead Lake (was gonna be this weekend but…) and some lessons for the parents plus more for myself before trying to connect with the local club.

But I’ve checked out the website and I’m looking forward to getting to know other folks as my experience levels rise to a point where I’d feel like less of a pain in the arse with a group.

By the way, the Army Navy Store across from the east end of Regency Square mall also has kayaking gear (if you don’t feel like hitting JTB). I broke down and bought a rack from the Army Navy and they were very helpful and installed it for me (while I watched carefully in case I ever need to do it myself).

I still can’t believe I haven’t gotten the boats wet yet.

It’s not fair!


Pier 17
Is on Roosevelt Blvd. just across from Roosevelt Mall (I think it’s still called that).

It’s right at the foot of the viaduct. Basicly, turn at the light before you go across the overpass and instead of going left into the mall you turn right. There’s the Book Mine (used book store) and the West Marine in the same building, then just across the road is Pier 17.

It’s quite a place. Fun to poke around in for certain.


kayak instruction between the storms
Hoodatwhatzit…That’s quite a name. You don’t have to wait to take lessons and get used to your boat before you call the local kayak club. The club puts on regular clinics at the whopping price of free in order to introduce kayaking to the general public and further the enjoyment and safety of kayaking as a sport. Paddle strokes are taught, bracing and bracing strokes, assisted rescues and self rescues, and the list goes on. Not taking advantage of the club is like going on a cruise and not eating because you don’t want to spend the money when all along the food was free!

The Jacksonville Club is the Florida Sea Kayaking Association(fska.org)

Rock On! Franklin

good to know

Once we figure out what Miss Frances is gonna do, I’ll get my rear in gear and check out the club site again.


New paddler in Jax
Hi there. My wife and I just got new kayaks, our first, and plan on joining the local club too. We live in Orange Park. We took lessons at Black Creek Outfitters and then bought 2 Necky Manitous. We haven’t been able to take them out yet because my dad is in the hospital. We are hoping to hit the water on Labor day weekend.

Hoo, maybe will meet at one of the club’s clinics or outings.