Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Weekday Wetlands Paddle




Fall paddling will be here shortly and to keep you on the water we're offering a guided  weekday paddle to the Dow Wetlands for $25! We'll launch from the Antioch Marina each weekday at 830 am and return by 10 am. Click HERE for reservations and availability.

There are limitless places to explore on the Delta and our best seasons with opportunities to view wildlife are soon approaching.



Facebook Fan Exclusive: For people who like our page we're offering weekday rentals, kayaks or paddleboards, for $10 per hour for up to 2 hours each weekday beginning September 18th through October 31st. Must call  to reserve with credit card and mention you like our Facebook page to receive discount.












Here's a sample of what you may see!


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Sunset paddles are another favorite!






Tuesday, September 5, 2017

San Joaquin River Trip #4 - Browns Island-Winter Island



Last Thursday was the beginning of an extreme heat wave and we took full advantage of the cooler morning to begin our adventure. Launching from the Antioch Marina at 9 am we caught what was left of the ebbing tide and made our way towards Winter Island. Our goal was to reach Van Sickle Island but by noon the temperature climbed to a point that it was no longer bearable, so we cut our trip short and headed back to land to submerse ourselves in AC.


San Joaquin River

For this trip you want to allow yourself a minimum of 4 hours to complete including a short stretch break. After launching from the marina we headed west on the San Joaquin River which turns into New York Slough when you reach Winter Island. The water was calm and glassy and we passed by a couple of sea lions sleeping on a buoy. After passing Winter Island, we reached Middle Slough which is another optional route you can choose. The current can be fairly strong in Middle Slough but you're generally protected from wind. We decided to continue to Browns Island and enter the slough that cuts through the Island to paddle north to reach the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers.





New York Slough
It had been nearly 2 hours since launching so we began to look for a place to land and refuel. Beaches can be scarce depending on tide height but we finally found a spot but not without some hazards. We spotted a gravelly beach surrounded by broken concrete and re-bar but with a big tree trunk that made the perfect bench to enjoy lunch on. We were less than a mile from our intended destination but the heat was on so we decided to relax and ride the flood tide home. The breeze never came and we glided over glassy water all the way home.






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Thursday, August 24, 2017

Labor Day Weekend Tours, Rentals and Gently Used Kayak and Paddleboard Sale




There have been some great paddling days on the water and some challenging but fun ones too! We've been treated to some amazing experiences viewing river otters and beaver within the Dow Wetlands, watching the eclipse while floating the San Joaquin River and playing what seemed like  "frogger" during the 2017 Big Cat Poker Run. The wind has been almost relentless the past couple of weeks but has created some great conditions for doing a little river surfing.

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video



I'm really looking forward to fall paddling and exploring some new locations. We have some great trips coming up including Birding by Kayak; more Intro to Kayaking classes, Essentials of Kayak Touring for those looking to learn self and assisted sea kayak rescues; Delta Discoveries - a series of progressive paddles leading to a new destination each week. Contact Delta Kayak Adventures if you'd like more information about these or any of our other tours. You can also check our calendar for upcoming trips or schedule a custom tour to a location of your choice with a minimum of 2 paddlers.



We have a number of gently used kayaks and paddleboards for sale. Come down to the Antioch Marina Labor Day weekend to take a look or check out our event where you can view photos and prices on Facebook.

Happy Paddling!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Keep Paddling

I've been on the water pretty much everyday for the past two months. I consider it an incredible blessing and I'm extremely grateful!

New updates - The Antioch Marina has installed a kayak launch at the boat ramp which makes it super easy to get in your kayak and out on the water quickly and safely. The launch was installed with grant funding from the SF Bay Water Trail.





















Delta Kayak Adventures has won Visit CA Delta's Best of the Delta 2017 for best watersport rental!
I'm so thankful for the votes and look forward to continuing to provide the best and safest on water Delta experience for visitors. To check out other winners of Best of the Delta click here.

Kayak and Paddleboard rentals are available 7 days a week from the Antioch Marina. Please reserve by contacting us or book online.

We also have lots of tours coming up including a Solar Eclipse Paddle August 21st! Limited availability for this trip but you can book online.






Delta Kayak Adventures has teamed up with the Antioch Recreation Department to provide some exciting classes and trips for the community. Be sure to keep an eye out for the Antioch Recreation Guide for Fall programs!

We recently completed a week of Intro to Kayaking classes for teens and I believe we will have some amazing future paddlers joining us on the water! A big thank you to a private donor, Sandra and the City of Antioch for providing 6 students from Antioch Middle School with the opportunity to learn how to paddle safely and have fun while learning a little about the Sacramento- San Joaquin River Delta. The smiles on their face filled my heart with happiness and gratitude.






As always, you may book a custom tour to any location in the Delta for your group. Whether it's a family outing, a team-building exercise, school or scouting group or you just want to explore the Delta, contact us and we'll help you put together a trip you'll always remember.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Memorial Weekend Guided Tours & Rentals






I've been doing lots of paddling and have a lot of blog updating to do but wanted to let you all know that Delta Kayak Adventures will be at the Antioch Marina this weekend offering kayak & paddleboard rentals. We also have scheduled a few Intro to Paddling the Delta guided trips at a special price that will focus on paddle safety in the Delta and where you can find some great paddling destinations launching from Antioch. Contact us for more info or book directly online.

Happy water trails!







Saturday, March 25, 2017

San Joaquin River Trip #3 - Antioch to Big Break Regional Shoreline



If you're looking for a half day or longer trip, this is a must do paddle. You'll definitely want to plan ahead taking tides and weather, wind in particular, into consideration. Launching from the Antioch Marina and landing at Big Break kayak launch/landing is approximately 6 miles one way. If you paddle at a steady pace without stopping, and with the flooding tide, it will take you about 2 hours one way. There are a couple of ways you can do this trip: one way with a shuttle or round trip with incoming and outgoing tides.

Antioch to Big Break

Big Break to Antioch

Either way, you'll want to launch from Antioch within an hour of high tide so you will have the current to help you along. Generally, especially during the summer, winds blow from the west and typically come up in the afternoon. Always check weather/wind report just before launching and if winds are predicted to be 10 mph or above reconsider launching. Only you know your skill and comfort level but beware that winds along this stretch of the San Joaquin can produce 3-4 foot waves and confused seas with 10 mph wind against an ebbing tide. That's where a one way paddle can be a great option.


For a one way trip, leave a vehicle at the takeout, Big Break. You'll need to pack wheels into or on your boat to transport your kayak from the landing to the parking lot because it's about a quarter mile walk on a paved trail. Big Break Visitor center has wheels you can borrow but depending on when you arrive, may not be open. This is a great option if winds are predicted to come up later in the day.





If you decide to do the round trip paddle make sure to pack a lunch or hearty snack to enjoy when you land at Big Break. There is a shaded picnic area with tables and restrooms are available near the landing. If you time your trip right you'll catch the outgoing tide back to Antioch.

There are a few other things you want to be aware of on this stretch of river. Beware of the shipping channel and stay out of it unless you're crossing and if you do cross make sure it's all clear and do it quickly. There are lots of aps for smartphones that show real time ship tracking. I personally like FindShip. There are a few fishing piers you'll pass by so make sure you're far enough away from them that you don't get caught in their lines or yelled at. There are many scenic stretches including Rogers Point, Fulton Shipyard, the Antioch Dunes, Antioch bridge, Little Break and Big Break. Be careful when paddling close to shore to watch for submerged wrecks or pilings.  There are some places to stop where beaches may be exposed at certain times but refrain from walking inland as it's mostly private property and the Antioch Dunes is off limits due to endangered plant and animal species.

This trip, as well as many others, are available as a custom tour with Delta Kayak Adventures with me as your guide. Pick a date and I'll do all the planning and provide boats and gear! Happy Paddling!


Kayak & SUP rentals and tours!








Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Recent Delta Paddles


Rock Slough Brentwood- Snow Geese fly over





The majority of my paddling has been close to home. I've been doing extensive exploring around Sherman Lake and the San Joaquin River between Pittsburg and Big Break. I'll be publishing a "San Joaquin River Trip #3 soon, so stay tuned. The storms have done a great job of clearing out many weed clogged channels, making them accessible to kayaks which adds to exploration options. It's a good idea to bring a gps to assist in finding your way around and help you get back home safely.

Sandhill Cranes and many other migratory birds have departed


I'm amazed at how many of the sloughs and channels have opened up. For awhile we were experiencing high water which was made even higher with the king tides. The Antioch Marina boat ramp parking lot completely flooded along with other areas adjacent to the marina. The San Joaquin River came up over the levee and made it possible to paddle around the Dow Wetlands trail opposite the harbormaster's building.

I've been spending a lot of time paddling to the Dow Wetlands Preserve and have enjoyed watching otters and beavers play around and hunt. I've done a little fishing and the bite seems to be picking up as I caught and released a couple of small striped bass this past week. I've explored Sherman Lake, Kimball Island, West Island and paddled to Big Break from the Antioch marina.

Three egrets and a gull

I'm really looking forward to nicer weather and sharing this amazing place with you! Rentals are currently  available in Antioch and Brentwood so contact us to reserve a kayak and do some exploring for yourself. Contact us to book a custom tour for your group with as little as two paddlers.

Ship slowly making her way through a debris field on the San Joaquin River
Holland Riverside Marina sunset


Enjoying the view of Mt Diablo from the San Joaquin River

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Friday, February 24, 2017

Paddling Between Storms

Paddling San Joaquin River near Antioch


This winter has definitely been the wettest I can remember. I'm incredibly thankful for the rain; all these storms and rainwater are providing the Delta with a much needed flush. Much of the water hyacinth has died and been blown out of many channels, pushed down river and out to the San Francisco Bay. Many sloughs and channels that were impassable are now open and begging to be explored.

Red wing blackbirds take flight over Dow Wetlands


I continue to paddle when the weather permits and I look forward to sharing the California Delta with paddlers who want to explore all the Delta has to offer. We have some great tours planned and as usual we continue to offer kayak and SUP rentals. Keep your eye on our calendar and sign up for our newsletter which we try to send out once a month with information about upcoming tours and other events. Delta Kayak Adventures also offers custom private tours tailored to what your group is interested in - whether an intro to recreational kayaking class, intro to sea kayaking, custom tour to a specific location or help with planning your own trip using our boats- contact us and we'll get you set up.





The water has been high with all the rain and dam releases but with careful planning, many parts of the Delta are safe to explore via kayak with appropriate gear and attire. Below you'll find pictures of recent trips.

Night heron hanging out in a flooded Antioch Marina parking lot

Cargo ship San Joaquin River

Dow Wetlands sunset

High water at Big Break

Antioch waterfront sunset

Homeward bound

Working our way through debris on San Joaquin River

Abandoned barge cabin Big Break

Old River Brentwood

Breaking through fog San Joaquin River





Sunday, January 8, 2017

Waiting out the Storms



The forecast for the San Francisco Bay area predicts rain 11 out of the next 15 days. Many Northern California Rivers are expected to rise above flood stage. The Mokelumne has already risen above its' banks closing launch facilities between the Camanche Dam and Lodi Lake. The dam is currently releasing 5000 CFS into the Mokelumne and the Cosumnes River Preserve has water nearly reaching the parking lot. Nimbus dam had been releasing 35,000 CFS which is 10x the rate it normally releases but is planning on releasing 75,000 CFS beginning Monday. With these kind of flows it's best to stay off the water and stay safe!


I was able to get out and paddle Friday on the San Joaquin River before the storms started to roll in. It was the "calm before the storm" and was absolutely beautiful. It was very chilly at 44 degrees at 2pm when I launched but wearing appropriate gear makes all the difference. I always dress for immersion and on Friday that meant 2 layers of thermal pants under my dry pants another two layers of synthetic shirts under my drytop, neoprene socks and booties, hat and balaclava.



I launched from the Antioch Marina ramp at 2pm and paddled east against the 2 knot ebbing tide. It was slow going but I managed to make it to the eastern end of West Island with one rest stop near the Antioch Dunes. I paddled close to shore as much as possible to take advantage of slower current. I paddled for about an hour and a half before crossing the river to reach the shore of West Island. I knew the return home would be easy paddling and take less than half the time to get back.




It really was an amazing afternoon. The light seemed to change by the minute, beginning with blue skies dotted with clouds and shifting to highlights of yellow and orange mixed with blues and grays. I wasn't alone while paddling because I had the company of a river otter, great blue heron, many cormorants and an emotional encounter with a beaver. I saw the beaver when I made it across the river close to West island. At first I thought it was just another beaver swimming along until I noticed he wasn't doing much swimming and seemed to be struggling to stay above water. As I got closer I noticed something poking out of his back, not through the fur but some sort of deformity. I think he may have been struck by a boat. He obviously was injured and couldn't move his tail or rear feet. I floated helplessly next to him wanting so much to just pick him up and put him in my kayak. Those big teeth of his kept me from doing so and I kept him company and prayed for God to relieve his suffering. He graciously answered my prayer and the beaver passed on before we reached the end of the island. I was saddened to see this beautiful creature die but I was also thankful for the encounter as it reminded me of how fragile our lives and our environment are and how important it is for us to be good stewards caring for our neighbors, neighborhoods and the critters that live among us.




My paddle did end on a melancholy note but it was a unique experience I will always remember.









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