One way trip advice

My husband and I are beginner to intermediate kayakers. We are planning a trip to Suwanne River SP and are bringing our kayaks. We are looking at several river trips, but aren’t sure how we’ll get back to our vehicle after paddling 10 miles down river. There are outfitters, but they charge about $35 per person, that’s $70 per trip with our own kayaks. Is this normal and what we should expect? What other options do we have? I know we will have these issues in other locations, so I’m hoping for something that can work in other locals as well.


In my experience that is ok
In fact that may be low. Another option that I know WW paddlers use is to drop a bicycle at the takeout. Then one of you rides it back to the car and drives the car plus bike to the takeout. Ten miles down river is not that far.

We’ve been talking about the bike option, it’s about 12 miles by road so not that bad. How about calling a taxi? Is that unheard of?

No but the rates will be higher…
What would the charge be for one of you to take your car to the takeout and then come back with the outfitter?

I have used Canoe Outpost that way… That way no canoe is involved nor trailer needed.

We paddle from the Suwannee river …

– Last Updated: May-20-13 7:33 PM EST –

S.P different times.
there are several options.
One is paddle up river for two thirds of the day, and then return back down with the current.
The second is to do a bike shuttle
And the third is to use ACA, (American Canoe Adventures) for a shuttle. John is a good guy.

The bike shuttle is good only if you have country roads to ride on, and then you have to hide and lock the bike in the woods or at some place where there are lots of people around.

On the Suwannee we prefer the up river and then back.
One final option is to hook up with someone else at the SP that wants to paddle and you can arrange a shuttle among yourselves.

Jack L

Shuttle Rates
Up here near Philly one place I know charges $25-$30 to transport a single kayak and $20-$25 for each kayak if there is more than one.

Another place will change $20 to cart a kayak if you are with others that rented kayaks from him.

Then another charges $40 to transport a kayak to any of their launch points and pick you up.

So the prices you are have aren’t out of line.

For one way river trips we either leave a car or bike at the take out. Then someone rides back to the start and returns with the car with the rack. Or better just have a car with a roof rack at the end. If you have a good set of clinch straps (like what comes with any kayak carrier) you can get two kayaks on a rack secure enough to drive 10 miles or more back to the start.

The cost of having someone haul your kayaks back can a few times can easily pay for a second rack system.

Bike First
From experience, I would suggest leaving the kayaks at the put in with someone to watch them. Drive to the take out with a bike, leave the vehicle and pedal back to the put in. This way if you get hurt or are tired after the kayak, you do not have a 12 mile bike to worry about. You also will not be as inconvenienced if someone decides that they really like your bike.

Thanks everyone!
Thanks for all of the input. We’ll be there for 12 days, so we will probably try several of the options to see what works for us. We have ACA on our list of outfitters to contact. I’m glad to hear that they will transport people without kayaks as well. We’ve never worked with an outfitter when we’ve had our own kayaks before.

We’re really looking forward to this trip. We’ve heard so much good about this area.

Thanks again!

Study the map and identify some good
tributary streams whose mouths are close to a place on the Suwannee where you have a good put-in. You can paddle up a tributary as far as it interests you, then go back to the main river and paddle up and back a ways, before going to the ramp or access where you entered.

That’s the way I’ve handled rivers and bayous in Louisiana, where there are often no outfitters around to even ask about shuttle.

Tributary streams are often more interesting in every way than the main river. Recently, at Tickfaw SP in Lousiana, the outfitter was closed, no shuttle. So I put in at the take out ramp on an old “canal” that leads to the Tickfaw River. Turned out the canal was more interesting than the river itself.

meet somebody

– Last Updated: May-21-13 4:47 PM EST –

perhaps you can meet someone else in the same situation, arrange a shuttle, and make some friends. It's worked for me 87 times (cell phone paddling contacts), and I've found paddlers are the best people in the world.

I see Jack mentioned this already, and suddenly having a "duh" moment (this ain't the stuff I paddle) his idea of paddling both ways makes sense as well to me. Looks like minimal current.