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Kayaking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Kayaking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Paddle along for scenic views on an unforgettable adventure!

Kayaking along the Cuyahoga River in Summit County

Kayaking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park

By Laurel Wilson

Posted On: Oct 11, 2021

As autumn approaches and the leaves begin to change colors, it's time to start thinking about Fall activities to do in Ohio this season. Fall in Ohio is an especially lovely time of year to explore Cuyahoga Valley National Park! Kayaking the Cuyahoga River will give you a unique view of the changing scenery and a fun way to do this is through the Cuyahoga Scenic Valley Railroad’s Kayak Aboard Program.

Here are some tips to get you started on your next scenic kayaking adventure…

two men standing next to bikes waving at incoming train in front of row of multi colored kayaks for kayak abroad program from cuyahoga valley scenic railroad in ohio

The Kayak Aboard Program

Kayak Aboard is a cool program that the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad offers that allows you to ride the train with your kayak to another stop in the park, and then kayak along the Cuyahoga River back to where you started. The cost to ride is $10 for a single kayak and $15 for a double kayak. If you want to go with a group of 5 or more people, they ask you to email them ahead of time so that they have enough Explorer staff to load the kayaks. 

Kayak Rentals Near CVNP

If you don't have your own kayak, you can rent one from Cuyahoga Valley Adventures nearby. All you need to do is make a reservation on their website ahead of time and they will lend you a kayak, paddle, and life jacket. They'll even drive you to a few different locations depending on where you would like to put in your kayaks. 

view from inside kayak on cuyahoga river in ohio

Where To Start

You might be wondering what location to start kayaking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. A great option is to park your vehicle at the Station Road train station in Brecksville. The train comes on schedule a few times a day, so make sure to arrive about 10 minutes early. From Station Road, ride the scenic railroad South until you get to the Lock 29 station and admire all of the colorful fall views along the way! If you get off at this stop, your paddle back the other direction will be around 10 miles and take 2-3 hours. There are plenty of rocky beaches to stop and rest, or stretch your legs if you need to. 

What To Wear

Be sure to dress in clothing that you won't mind getting wet. There's a very good chance that you'll get a bit wet while paddling, so wear moisture wicking layers that will dry quickly. You'll have to carry your kayak from the train to the river, a pair of sneakers or water shoes are suggested as there can be rocky or muddy areas. No flip flops! 

kayaking cuyahoga river in ohio

Enjoy The Scenery

As you glide along the water, you'll hear the river rushing and birds chirping. You might even see a bald eagle or a cute river otter swimming along the shore! There are hiking trails that run along the river as well, so you'll see some people walking, running, and biking along the way.

Some areas during your kayaking trip will be very calm and that's when you'll really notice all of the beauty that Cuyahoga Valley National Park has to offer. Other times, there will be adventurous rapids to make your way through! It's the best of both worlds - exciting and relaxing. 

Upon arriving back at Station Road, you can easily pull your kayak out of the water at the rocky beach and carry it up the new path that was put in recently to make this experience easier on you!

Kayaking in Cuyahoga Valley National Park and taking the scenic railroad has never been easier or more accessible to visitors. So, give it a whirl this fall!

For more outdoor adventures, check out #OhioFindItHere at Ohio.org

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