Posted on 19 Jun 2024

Paddlesports Guide for Colorado

As the summer heats up, it’s the perfect time to head to the water to cool off. If you would rather float on top than watch from the shore, then paddle sports may be for you. From Stand-up Paddleboarding (SUP) to kayaking to canoeing, paddle sports offer something for everyone of any age and ability. With plenty of places to rent gear, adding a day on the water to your vacation itinerary is a must then head to one of Colorado's favorite lakes for some fun.  And bring your water-loving dog too - they enjoy a good ride!



Stand-up paddleboarding (often referred to as SUP) has become a rage in water sports, rising in popularity as a fun way for people of any age to feel like they can walk on water. A great family sport, inflatable paddleboards fold into a backpack, can be taken anywhere, and are easy to inflate. Also a great low-impact cardio workout, paddleboarding works your core strength, arm, and leg muscles, and balance.


Kayaking is easier than you might think and a great way to feel stable and glide around the water. Many kayaks can hold more than one person, with sit-on-top options that are great for kids or sit inside options for a streamlined ride. You only need a few basic skills to paddle a kayak in calm lake conditions, with the forward stroke and sweep stroke for turning.


Canoes are an age-old watercraft, great for longer adventures, more people, and more gear. Canoes are easier to move around in to adjust your sitting position and require just a few basic paddling skills if you are just playing around for the day.

Great spots for watercraft in Colorado: 

Pearl Lake, Steamboat Springs

Pearl Lake, SteamboatEnjoy beautiful views in a serene mountain setting at Pearl Lake, a small, calm lake that doesn’t allow motorized watercraft. About 45 minutes from Steamboat, Pearl Lake offers SUP rentals, picnic areas, and walking trails for a perfect day-long adventure.


Piney Lake, Vail

Piney LakeJust 12 miles from Vail, located at Piney River Ranch, this 40-acre retreat is a beautiful must-see lake for a day of paddlesports and adventure. Located next to the spectacular Gore Range, activities include SUP, canoeing, hiking to the falls, camping, and enjoying nature.


Sylvan Lake, Eagle

Sylvan LakeLocated 30 minutes south of Eagle and surrounded by the White River National Forest, Sylvan Lake is a 42-acre lake, attracting plenty of paddlesport enthusiasts. Plan to spend the day or night with plenty of picnic areas, camping and hikers can enjoy more than 7 miles of trails.

Maggie Pond, Breckenridge

Maggie Pond, BreckenridgeThis is the ideal spot for those just learning how to SUP. Maggie Pond is right in town in Breckenridge, so it's easily accessible and the waters are calm. You will be treated to beautiful views of the Tenmile mountain range at the base of Peak 9 near Main Street Station. 

SUP Yoga - If you're looking for some extra balance practice, a number of yoga studios offer SUP Yoga classes on Maggie Pond throughout the summer. Check out Bhava Yoga, Meta Yoga Studios, and the Breckenridge Recreation Center.

Lake Dillon, Dillon

Lake DillonReady to head out to a large, spacious lake with sandy beaches? Lake Dillon is out of Breckenridge, but gives you two full-service marinas, views of the Rocky Mountains, and a fun-filled day with your choice of paddleboarding, kayaking, sailing, boating, or fishing. If you're looking for calmer waters, head there early in the morning or closer to sunset when boat traffic is less. 




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