Paddling alone

Fot those that paddle alone, where (ie lake, ocean, river)and under what conditions will you paddle alone?

Normal For Me
I love to paddle with others but wind up by myself most of the time. I paddle rivers, bays, sounds, ICW, and ocean with others and solo.

Happy Paddling,


Not an easy question to answer… at first thought I would say anywhere that I felt comfortable taking ,and being responsible for, a few lesser experienced paddlers. It really depends on experience and judgment and location. Having been through a few less than fun experiences I know my limits and where/when to push them. Plus, I am conservative in my risk assessment so I stay well inside my abilities when alone.

Normal for me too.
I paddle when I have time, usually means just as the sun is coming up. Usually surfing but sometimes coastal paddles within 1/2 mile or so of shore, I don’t do this when there is a chance of very strong offshore winds (however do surf when those conditions exist).

More Alone Than Not…

– Last Updated: Nov-17-06 8:50 PM EST –

but I tend to heed when my "gut" tells me it doesn't feel right. That happens most often in winter surf conditions. Basically, the senses pick up on the conditions, the possibilities and the contingencies for what can happen. The "math" gets done almost unconsciously and when things don't add up, the gut says... "Uh, time to rethink whether you want to do this..."


I paddle alone 90% of the time.
Lakes, bays, protected coast, close to shore. If high wind, it has to be onshore wind. If in the bay with high river outflows, it has to be on an incoming tide. Coastal areas have to be known that the currents don’t exceed 1 knot.

Paul S.

On whatever water is available
Bays, rivers, reservoirs, lakes. I go when the wind is under 15 mph and the chop is reasonable. Lately I paddled with a friend when the wind was 20 mph, gusting to 30. Great fun, but I was glad he was there. Just spent over $450 in assorted dry and wet gear that will increase my paddling opportunities for colder, windier (is this a word?) conditions. Each day on the water increases my confidence about the next day. I take it one day at a time, but, be assured, being alone will not be an absolute barrier for me.

Alone 95% of the time
That is the point isn’t it? I usually paddle when everyone else is working.


I stay conservative
I stick to areas that don’t get major currents, waves, etc., and close to shore and/or other water users.

That the conditions are favorable. I paddle slow rivers alone. Class II+ and above require companions. Lakes with conditions I feel able to handle or self rescue due to conditions, do solo. Out of those parameters, need paddling partner that I have confidence in and have practiced rescues with. Pretty much trust my ability to assess the conditions, and determine if it is within my ability to safely paddle.

Open Crossings
I prefer to do ocean crossings and trips alone. Did a 25 mile crossing in 20-25kt winds and 10 ft seas what a blast.

Show Me The Water
I live just off the Pamlico Sound in Eastern North Carolina so I have the pleasure of paddling the ICW, sounds, rivers, bays, creeks, ocean, marshes, lakes, etc.

Like most retirees I usually paddle alone but when on the coast I make sure I have my Marine radio. Inland water finds the cellphone in my bag.

“Any day on the water is a great day”


solo paddling
i paddle solo when i need the solitude or when none of my usual partners are available. i have a flexible schedule and am frequently off when most of the world is working. as to the conditions, i paddle in what i’m comfortable in no matter if solo or tandem. careful preparation is necessary with both, but i probably exercise even more care when solo. -harry

almost always alone…
… not in big water, but in areas remote enough that if I had a heart attack or something (yo Walt) it would be a while 'til they found me.

I don’t really think about that though. Like Dinah Shore used to sing “Que Serra, Serra…”

I usually …
paddle alone. Local lakes - because they’re close. I usually decide to paddle on the spur of the moment - or take advantage of a couple of free hours. And I enjoy paddling in rain or at night. I like the solitude - very relaxing. It’s always nice paddling with friends, but due to weather/schedules, I’m most often on my own.

familure rivers

– Last Updated: Nov-18-06 3:27 PM EST –

The eleven piont and the little river around cadiz ky are what i paddle alone on. I now what i can do reasonbly safe and tend to stick with it.

You must be
related to superman. 25 miles in 25mph winds and 10 ft seas, WOW. I think I would have stayed on shore.

Looks like…
I will be a solo act again this winter,and spring. My closest paddling buddy blew a shoulder muscle,and another buddy blew a knee out. Just when I am getting all my health problems straightened out. Oh well.

Happy “solo” Paddling billinpa

Paddle more alone than not lately.
I enjoy the solitude.

My criteria are (of course) different for warm and cold weather. The most important thing for me is to watch the wind numbers - 15mph is a max for me in the winter. Might be a bit more adventurous in the summer, but not much.

I paddle an open solo canoe and I’ll go anywhere alone that I’d go with others: lakes, ponds, streams, nothing fast or salt. I’d take it on a solo trip down the Mississippi if I was in the mood. The only place I’d go solo that I wouldn’t go with others is a secret smallmouth bass lake. Solo only.