Yesterday was Labor Day and we had some time, so decided to go explore our “backwater backyard” in Guana River State Park. We went up to North Guana Outpost (check ’em out!), rented a kayak and a couple of SUPs and were on our way (you can launch straight out from the back of the store)! The Guana, as always, was spectacular! It is so beautiful. We saw a lot of fish and birds and could hear gators, but never actually saw any. We went out at high noon, and it was pretty darn hot. An early morning excursion might be even better. But it was awesome and I highly recommend it. Great exercise, too! $25/hr. for board/kayak rentals or $50 for a 1/2 day. We may have to invest in a couple of SUPs for Christmas!
Looking for something really, really fun to do by yourself or with your family? Try Stand-up Paddleboarding with H20 Generation! My good friend, “Chickie” Dimain, perhaps better known locally, regionally and internationally as, “Da Buh” for his DaBuh.com surf forecast, has opened a new business providing lessons and guided tours for H20 Generation Paddleboards. Chickie offers tours inside Swimming Pen Creek, launching from Whitey’s fish camp on Fleming Island.
Currently, for just $25 per person, Chickie will provide a lesson and the tour (about a 2 mile round-trip paddle), where you’re likely to see a great deal of wildlife including manatees, turtles, blue herons and other species. If you prefer a shorter or longer distance, Chickie will accommodate you. Of course, if you prefer to paddle alone, you can do that too.
Chickie can also drop the boards off at any location and give you private lessons at your place. This is also great for groups, birthdays, corporate and team-building outings. Think, the baseball team or cheerleading squad! Chickie also sells his beautiful H20 Generation Boards. They are all MADE IN AMERICA! (NYC) and they are epoxy, which makes them incredibly durable, light and bouyant! They regularly retail for about $1,000, but he is providing deals right now while in start-up (great deals!) Check him out for rentals or sales at 904-444-2149.
I took my wife, 15-year old daughter and 11-year-old daughter this past weekend. They had never SUP’ed before, took a brief 10-minute lesson and none of them ever fell the entire day. Not once! The two miles were the perfect distance for all of us. My oldest daughter is now already asking for her own paddleboard for Christmas! I cannot recommend it highly enough. Chickie and his beautiful daughter, Ella, are great guides and will make you feel safe and right at home in the water, no matter your level of experience. If you’re surfer and it’s flat, you’ll love this, I assure you. I particularly enjoyed being in the water with my entire family, the light workout and just enjoying the scenic beauty of our natural surroundings. Speaking of natural surroundings, I won’t speculate on what kind of bush that is growing there in the parking lot at Whitey’s in the photo, below.