Paddle Through Town on the Columbus Paddling Trail

Happy family on summer vacation together canoeing on a lake.

There are many wonderful things about the city of Columbus, and one of the most beautiful is the river that winds its way through town. The Colorado River ecosystem is home to beautiful wildflowers, birds, and small animals. Paddling along the river can help you see the city and the river in a new light. Enjoy the natural beauty and paddle through town on the Columbus Paddling Trail.

The Columbus Paddling Trail

The Columbus Paddling Trail covers over six and a half miles of winding river. It can take you between two and five hours to float along from the start to the end point of the paddling trail, and you’ll see fantastic flora and fauna along the way. The trip is gentle enough for paddlers of any level, with the wide-open river flowing calmly and only a few gentle rapids. In addition, there are very few homes along the banks. So, paddling along feels like a break from civilization for just a little while.

Activities Along the Way

In the first third of the paddling trip, you’ll see several islands in the river that are perfect for exploring. Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy a hearty snack while you watch the river flow by and rest in the gentle breezes. Of course, you can also pack some fishing gear and drop a line or two along the way. In fact, there are several species of fish you can try your hand at, including alligator gar, bluegill, carp, yellow catfish, and more.

Stunning Scenery and Ecology

Take your time and don’t paddle too quickly. Otherwise, you’ll miss the incredible views. There are dozens of tree species to spot, including bald cypress, cottonwood, and willow. Swaying and rustling beneath the tree canopies, you might spot Arizona trumpet and hibiscus flowers. Also, among the trees and along the banks, watch for bird species like egrets, herons, and roseate spoonbills. On fallen logs, turtles often climb up to sun themselves, and water snakes flit along in the shallows.

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What to Know About the Columbus Paddling Trail Trip

The paddling trail is easy and comfortable for most people to navigate. However, if you have never used a kayak before, don’t worry. There are frequent guided tours you can take with a ranger that will help you become more familiar with kayaking so you can make the most of your experience. You’ll put in where the 71 Business crosses under the North River Bridge. Then, you’ll float along until you reach the take-out at Beason’s Park, only one block from downtown Columbus. So, spend your day on the river, and you’ll feel rejuvenated!

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