Paddleboarding Canyon Lake Arizona
Stand Up Paddleboarding the Lakes and Rivers in Arizona
One of the questions we get asked a lot is “Where do you paddleboard in Arizona”? Just the Phoenix area alone has multiple desert lakes and rivers, as well some great urban lakes like Tempe Town Lake. Just a short drive north, the Arizona mountains offer scenic pine tree lined mountain lakes for SUP fishing, camping, or just paddling around. Want to be a little adventurous, go kayaking or river SUPing down the Verde River. We hope to see you paddling Arizona soon!
Paddling Around the Phoenix Area
Phoenix is known as “The Valley of the Sun” and offers a great location to paddle year round. With our mild winter weather, we are able to offer paddle board and kayak rentals year round. We have put together a list of the local Phoenix paddleboard spots we think you may enjoy.
Paddling in the East Valley
Tempe Town Lake
Tempe Town lake is the closest lake to Riverbound Sports and offers a 2 mile long urban lake created by damning the lower Salt River just north of ASU and Down Town Tempe. The lake is used for training and racing by Paddle Boarders, Outrigger Canoes, Rowers and Dragon Boat teams. The lake’s central location to anywhere in the Phoenix area with no motorized boats makes access to Tempe Town Lake a perfect place to get out on the water for a sunset paddle with friends or a good workout on the water.
Tempe Town Lake is a non-swimming lake and is a Permit use only for any boats or paddleboards. We provide permits for all Riverbound Sports rental paddleboards and kayaks.
Come join us for our Tuesday night sunset paddles.
Named after the Saguaro Cactus that surround this beautiful desert lake. Saguaro lake is located in the Tonto National Forest just a short drive to the east of the valley and is one of Phoenix’s most popular lakes for boating, kayaking, paddleboarding, and fishing year round.
Saguaro Lake has more than 22-miles of shoreline and includes a restaurant, picnic tables, restrooms and boat ramps at the marina, as well as Maricopa County Sheriff’s aid station. Butcher Jones Recreation Area Beach, which can be reached by a road a few miles north of the marina is a great place to launch for paddleboarding and kayaking and features swimming, picnic and restroom facilities. The beach is known to be visited regularly by the wild horse that live in the area around the lake.
Riverbound Sports lakeside rentals are available on Saturdays starting April 15th and run throughout the summer. Reservations must be made in advance either at Riverboundsports.com or calling 480.463.6686.
Canyon Lake is located about 40 miles east of Phoenix in the Tonto National Forest on the Apache Trail. The lake provides about 28 miles of coast line and the most picturesque lakes of the four Salt River chain lakes with it’s scenic red rock canyon walls hidden coves. Ideal for SUP or Kayak fishing.
Be sure to keep your eye out for the Big Horn Sheep on the mountain sides.
The lake offers three recreational sites for day use; the Acacia Picnic Site, the Palo Verde Recreation Site and the Boulder Creek Recreation Site. The sites offer picnic areas and restroom facilities. The marina provides a restaurant and convenience store as well as shoreline camping at the Canyon Lake Campground adjacent the marina.
One of our favorite locations is the Boulder Creek Recreation area just west of the marina. Offering a no boat area with plenty of area for swimming and paddling with fiends and family without the worry of boat traffic. Be sure to arrive early for parking and Tonto Permits are required.
Lower Salt River
The Lower Salt River Recreation area is located just below Saguaro lake on Power Road. Paddling season starts around Memorial Day when you’ll see paddlboarders, kayakers, and tubers playing on the river. Some of the best times to paddle the Salt River are in the early morning or evening when the wild horses and wildlife are along the shoreline.
The river run is about a three to five hour paddle starting at Camp Circle (tubers drop-off) to the last pull out at Granite Reef with a couple locations to pull out along the way. Offering class 1 and an optional class 2 rapid, the Salt River is a great place to try River SUPing and kayaking.
Although the river is a relatively slow running and safe, safety is still a must. Be sure to ask us about safe practices for running the river or paddle with someone experienced in running the river.
For information on flow and water level along the lower salt river check the Salt River Below Stewart Mountain Dam for the latest information.
Paddling in the North East Valley
Bartlett Lake is an easy drive located approximately 45 miles north of our Tempe shop location.
One of the largest east valley lakes, Bartlett Lake offers approximately 2800 acres of water for paddling and boating while the shoreline offers gently sloping beaches for shoreline camping on the west side and mountains that break the wind on the east. Perfect for day camping our a long weekend stay and play.
Paddling in the North West Valley
Lake Pleasant’s expansive and open and clean body of water is located in the north west part of the Valley in Peoria and Morristown, Arizona.
It is a convenient drive off of Route 17 in Northern Phoenix, approximately 40 miles from downtown. When you get off Route 17 onto Carefree Highway/Route 74, it is a straight shot to the first launch area at Pleasant Harbor in Peoria.
Lake Pleasant offers multiple camp grounds and shoreline primitive camping on the west side of the lake. For the latest information, be sure to check out Maricopa County Parks or Lake Pleasant Marina.