Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Guide to Paddleboating in Ohio

Photo by OHventures

Introducing the perfect combo of biking and boating: PADDLEBOATING! Also referred to as pedal boating, this activity is perfect for young and old alike, and surprisingly enough does not require a great deal of athletic ability. It is much more relaxing and care free than other waterborne transport such as canoeing or kayaking. Two great benefits of paddleboating is that your hands are free and the boat has a very small chance of tipping. Paddleboating is not an activity that would likely take place on a river, but rather on a small pond or lake. Most paddleboats are made for two people to pedal, while some have additional seating in the rear. They are very simple to steer, and typically dirt cheap to rent (most are just $10 or under!). All of these factors make for a very enticing trip, and it's easy to convince even the most reluctant of adventurers to partake.

I have been paddleboating in Mill Creek Park in Youngstown, and at Creekside Gahanna. At Creekside, the pond is EXTREMELY small, so don't be surprised when you get there and you literally have to go in circles in the pond in order to extend the paddleboat experience. It is $5 per boat for 20 minutes, which is more than enough time to go around the very small pond. Even though it is such a tiny space, the environment of Creekside makes up for it! It is like a snapshot of the perfect little American town: shops, diners, fountains, and lush landscapes. Plus, there are lots of hiking paths in nearby Friendship Park that can provide for more OHventuring! Oftentimes, there is music (usually jazz or blues) that will be playing live in the courtyard. Gahanna is such a cute town that you HAVE to visit! It's great for kids or couples on a romantic rendezvous!




The paddleboating experience at Mill Creek Park, as well as most of the places listed below, is much larger than Creekside. You will have an entire lake to explore in most cases! Be sure to visit the sites and call ahead for details on each location. Find which place is right for you and take a relaxing paddleboating excursion on calm Ohio waters. Another day, another item checked off of the Buckeye Bucket List!

A non-comprehensive list of paddleboating locations in Ohio. Please comment or contact us with any I may have unintentionally excluded!
Central Ohio
Alum Creek State Park, Lewis Center
Creekside Gahanna, Gahanna
Sharon Woods Metro Park, Westerville

Northeast Ohio
Clay's Park, North Lawrence
Lorain County Metro Parks, Wellington
Mill Creek Park, Youngstown

Northwest Ohio
Indian Lake State Park, Lakeview
International Park, Toledo

Southeast Ohio
Happy Hills Family Campground, Nelsonville
Lake Logan Boat Rental, Logan
Stroud's Run Boathouse, Athens

Southwest Ohio
Lake Vesuvius, Ironton
Rocky Fork State Park, Hillsboro
Voice of America Park, West Chester

3 comments:

  1. This sounds great! I'm getting a dog that the breed was originally bred for being on barges -- I'm thinking that he would love to go on a paddle boat with me when he's big enough (by springtime probably). Is there a little room in or on the boat for a small/medium sized dog do you think? I'd have a life vest for him just in case. This sounds like a great way to take him places that would be fun for us both. (and I live very near to Gahanna which is great for starters!)
    thanks for the info!
    Pam

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  2. I came accross a very interesting website with more info on this product: http://www.nauticexpo.com/boat-manufacturer/pedal-boat-17097.html

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  3. Lot of great information which can be helpful in some or the other way.
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