New Orleans day paddle?

I have to go to a trade show in New Orleans in November and wanted to do a day kayak Paddle. does anyone have any leads for me about outfitters in the area? there was nothing on the Pnet list. There was some web site with city or swamp tours, I’ve never been there, any recomendations?

OR… if you’ve got a spare boat, I’ll buy the lunch if someone wants a paddling buddy for an afternoon.

I am going to be there in May
for a conference, and am curious about the same thing. Some outfitters came up in a google search, but I would love to hear from people here on the board.

I was there right after Christmas and had posted in the places to paddle section looking for some input. Several people offered ideas there, as well as sent me some emails with info. When I have time later I’ll post some of the info I rec’d. Of course, we drove down with our kayaks, so we were looking for places but not necessarily an outfitter.

Ultimately we ended up paddling right outside of Baton Rouge at Alligator Bayou because we didn’t have time/weather didn’t cooperate to do a paddle closer to New Orleans, but there are defintely many places close to there to paddle. Alligator Bayou was very pretty and there are tons of little narrow bayous to explore there, although we only had a couple of hours. They do rent canoes there, but no kayaks.

I’ll look up the name of the other outfitter we saw down there - I know they had kayaks as well as canoes and let you know.


…I lived in that area for a long time and spent

a lot of time camping in swamps. I could TAKE

you to them, but derned if I could TELL you how

to get to them!


PS Unwritten rules of swamp paddling…
…1) REMEMBER: Logs don’t swim upstream

2) If you see a log swimming upstream, it

ain’t a log. It’s a 'gator.

3) A frog’s eyes aren’t 3 feet apart

4 and 5 are a pair

4) Never EVER shoot at a snake in your boat

5) Do not swim with angry snakes

here’s some info
I used to live in the general area and still go there from time to time. If you are willing to travel 35-45 miles, I would recommend you call H2O Sports in Covington. They rent canoes and Kayaks and can probably help you. Two close rivers with good paddling in the area are the Tangipahoa and Tchefuncte Rivers. If you want to read a little before you plan something, go to and order the book Paddling Louisiana. Good luck. I hope you enjoy the visit.


Do a search for “Louisiana” under subject for a lot of good ideas. Yak-a-Lou has a pretty comprehensive list floating around here somewhere.

Second to H2O Sports on the northshore-friendly folks with a good selection of boats to choose from. I really enjoy the Bogue Chitto River if you can get away from N.O. for a day.

IMHO, a better book(I’ve read both), is “Trail Guide to the Delta Country” published by the N.O. Sierra Club and edited by John Sevenair. It covers paddling, biking, and hiking trails. I don’t know if Amazon has it, but a good La. outfitter would.

Sounds like your time is limited, but if you can get upriver to the Baton Rouge Area, e-mail me. If my work schedule permits, I’ve got a canoe and a good appetite.

I’ve done Bayou LaBranche/Trepagnier
which are near the interstate wnw of N.O. Very pleasant, and you can paddle a little out onto Lake Ponchartrain. We also canoed in the Baratraria Unit of Lafitte National Park. Takes a little longer to get to from the city. I used “Canoe Trails of the Deep South” to find these.

I remember an outfitter in the area who might rent boats, but don’t remember the name. I suggest you Google for canoe dealers in the city.

Said guidebook lists one N.O. outfitter-
Canoe and Trail Adventures

129 North Hennessy

New Orleans 70119

(504) 486-2355

This info is over ten years old, so who knows?

Paddling in New Orleans
Hi there-

I actually live in New Orleans, and have 4 boats.

If you are interested in paddling somewhere in particular, let me know-we can hook up, you can use one of my “babies” and we’ll paddle. I usually paddle in Lake Ponchartrain, but I’ve also done a decent amount in Porters River, the “Tchfunky” on the North Shore (about 40 minutes from N.O.) and most of the other rivers across the lake. For big fun I drive an hour and paddle in the Gulf to one of the islands. I’ve heard the swamps out in New Orleans East are interesting-haven’t been there yet. But if its something you are interested in checking out, I can go scope them out before you get here.

Feel free to check me out and email me through my site at


Thanks, I may do that in May,
if it’s okay with you. Not sure what my exact coneference schedule is, but I’ll be in New Orleans 5/27-6/3.


Just let me know
if there is anywhere in particular you are interested in paddling. I live just blocks from Lake Ponchartrain, but am a short drive from several other interesting places such as Bayou St. John, many swamps and small rivers.

I’ll be in touch Suncat
and like I said, I’ll get the food/drinks or even a nice dinner when we get back.

You’ll completely LOVE what “Nawlins” has to offer in the “food & drinks” category…if there’s one thing we do well here its food!

Alligator Bayou
I have some pictures of Alligator Bayou on my webpage under the paddling trip section. If you decide to go there, let me know and I will check out the launch area as I live about 5 minutes away. At certain times of the year, the duckweed and water hyacinths block the way. In the pictures on my webpage, you’ll see what I mean. We could not make it all the way to Spanish Lake due the the water hyacinth blocking the way. If you want to see alligators, it’s almost a sure bet. In the fishing section I have some photos of the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain at Bayou Lacombe. Cane Bayou is also a nice place to paddle on the north shore. Massey’s Outfitters may rent boats. They have a webpage.


Here it is…
Here’s the list that Kingfish mentioned… It was put together mostly for fishing but any good fishing spot is usually a nice scenic spot around here. With the nations second longest shoreline there are certainly no shortage of places to get a boat wet. In Orleans parish you can paddle Baouy Savage NWR but it’s fairly devoid of cypress trees and cypress trees draped with spanish moss seem to be a big draw for yankee visitors.

Hopefully my lovely and talented wife will be all healed up by the time you guys make your respective visits. give us a shout and we’ll be glad to come play too. We’ve got five yaks, two canoes and a pirogue so you can pretty much pick your poison.

I also highly recommend H2O Sports. No one at massey’s seems to know squat about the yaks they sell. Been there four or five times and have yet to meet anyone who knows a T-120 from a Prism.

Anywho, I apologize in advance for the long post but maybe someone will benefit from it.

CAJUN DESTINATIONS - the short list:

There are just too many to list. Almost anywhere that saltwater meets roadway is a potentially great spot. If you can find moving water, cuts, inlets, passes, you can find fish. Tidal flow is usually the key and a falling tide seems most productive. Louisiana has no shortage of such spots. Louisiana boasts possession of what is arguably the longest shoreline in the nation with a high percentage of it being saltwater. (Note the difference between shoreline and coastline.) Add that long shoreline to a long paddling season and liberal limits and we call it Sportsman’s Paradise.

From east to west a few spots are listed here.

Slidell & Lake Ponchartrain - East of New Orleans - put in at Tites Marina on Hwy 11 @ Lake Ponchartrain or cross the bridge and put in on the sandy beach just across the lake. Two of the top three speckled trout in the state have been caught near here in the past few years. Fish along the pylons of any of the three bridges. Trolling works well. Live bait is great. Bumping a “Deadly Dudley” along the bottom is a popular tactic. Redfish and flounder are also common here. Boat traffic can be a problem. Better to fish during the week if fishing from a kayak or head for the train trestles from the east side to find fewer boats. The area around the bridges experiences moderate to strong currents during tidal phases.

Lakefront houses can be rented on the north shore for reasonable rates. They ain’t fancy but they’re clean and a good group of 10+ adults can have a blast. Some even have pool tables. The French Quarter is only 30 minutes away (by car). Some of the rental houses can accommodate up to 20 people.

Drive along U.S. Highway 90 and you’ll find innumerable spots to put in.

5 BR Lake house:

Buras to Venice - South of New Orleans - Take your pick… Almost anywhere that you can access the water on the west side of the highway will put you right on top of redfish heaven. There is a rough hotel at the Buras Marina across the west levee at Buras. It would allow one to sleep almost at waterside but you should have some way of securing your boats overnight. They have a light that provides good trout fishing at night from the bank or the boat. Small greasy spoon downstairs. Trying to kayak across or in the Mississippi River is discouraged. Ocean going vessels usually create a constant stream of traffic. The rule of tonnage definitely applies and some of these ships make wakes seven feet high. There is PLENTY of great fishing on the west side.

Further south on Hwy 23 you’ll find the best motel in the area - The Light house Lodge. There are a few bed and breakfast type place available too.

Port Fourchon & Grand Isle - South of Thibodaux - Again, pick a direction and put your boat in the water. At Fourchon you have a choice between a good hotel complete with diner, restaurant, and lounge OR purely primitive beach camping. Excellent fishing along the beach by the sunken barges and along the rock jetties (weather permitting). Beware - dangerous traffic and currents by the jetties. Please be careful.

Just South along Hwy 1 is a hole that is popular with kayak fishermen. There’s an unimproved roadside launch with great fishing in a series of small ponds or mini-bays. Each little bridge that you cross as you travel south provides more opportunities. Pick one. It really doesn’t matter.

Grand Isle has a number of hotels, motels and campgrounds at bay side or beach side. If you choose beach side you will have to portage across a small levee. There’s a selection of bay side motels. There a nice state park at the end of the road where you can fish the beach and sleep next to your yak. The state park probably offers the best security for those “roughing it”. Be aware - the island was settled by pirates. They’re proud of that fact and some of the youth work hard to continue the pirate tradition. Secure your stuff!

Cocodrie - South of Houma - There’s a few motels available. I’m not aware of any campgrounds here. Lots of marsh fishing in any direction. Camping is allowed along the beaches at Isle Dernieres if you’re up for a ten mile paddle to and from the island. You’ll definitely be roughing it.

Cypremore Point State Park - South of New Iberia - Beach side camping with improved facilities. Great coastal fishing for trout and redfish etc…

Cameron, Calcasieu Lake and Holly Beach - South of Lake Charles - A few hotels but nothing fancy. Beach camping at Holly Beach. Huge speckled trout in Calcasieu Lake. Lots of alligators in the marshes. There’s great bass fishing on the north side of Hwy 82 and saltwater fishing on the south side. It’s all in one neat package. Some of the best birding in the country during migratory periods.


Bayou Courtableau Trail - Excellent scenery, great fishing for bass, white perch, bream etc… NO SHUTTLE - Possible sightings of Bald Eagles et al.

Two O’Clock Bayou Trail - Excellent scenery, great fishing for bass, white perch, bream etc… NO SHUTTLE - Possible sightings of Bald Eagles et al.

Bogue Chitto River - Fun trips down a sandy scenic river - class 1 & maybe 1.5. $20 shuttle service. Overnight camping at campground or on sandbars.

Wiskey Chitto River - Fun trips down a sandy scenic river - class 1 & maybe 1.5. Shuttle service. Overnight camping at campground or on sandbars.

Kisatchie Bayou (rapids?) - Fun trips down a sandy scenic river - class 2-3? Depending on water level. Shuttle service. Overnight camping at campground or on sandbars.

Toro Bayou and Sabine River (Rapids?)- Several options including a 50.3 mile trip (4 days) offered here. Possibly the best available shuttle trip offered for those who like to “rough it” in the state. Best Striped Bass fishing available in the state.