Where to Go Paddleboarding in the Triangle

Stand-up paddleboarding on the Triangle’s lakes and rivers makes for a SUPper time.

Craving a water-filled adventure close to home this summer? Stand-up paddleboarding on the Triangle’s lakes and rivers is right up your alley. Not only is it low-cost, but you don’t have to drive a hundred miles to do it—and it provides the perfect excuse to do some local exploring. Just don’t find yourself up the creek without a paddle (had to). Here are four great places to keep calm and paddle on.

Adventure on this 12,000-acre reservoir in the Triangle via WakeRack, a grab-and-go paddleboard rental company that allows you to rent gear for up to three hours at a time for just 10 bucks an hour. The sturdy, light and inflatable boards (aka easy to fit in any vehicle and transport to pretty much any launch point along Falls Lake!) make for the perf perch to get some exercise, tan or perfect a yoga pose for that desirable Insta pic. Namaste bendy!

Nestled in the woods just a short drive from NC State, Lake Johnson offers rental boats and personal paddle crafts, but the best way to see the surrounding area is by paddleboard—natch. Grab a board from WakeRack (about five minutes from Lake Johnson’s Waterfront Center) and launch straight into the water, where you can float under piers, beside trails, and around the park’s vibrant curtain of oaks and pine. You’ll be chillin’ like a villain in no time.

This one’s for the outdoorsy types. Start your day with a paddle sesh on the 14,000-acre reservoir (keep your eyes peeled for bald eagles, osprey and other wildlife!); then take a dip in one of the lake’s seven swim beaches to cool down. And if you’re really feeling frisky, bring a tent to settle into one of the campsites for a night under the stars. 

Cape Fear River

Run some rivers Pocahontas-style via Cape Fear River Adventures, which offers SUP rentals—plus kayak rentals, tubing, whitewater rafting and scenic rafting (!). Spend the whole day lazing up and down the river’s miles of unspoiled landscape riddle with turtles, herons and more, or book a paddleboard yoga sesh to catch some Zen. 

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About the Author

Angela Brown
Angela Brown is the author of our Business & Economy section.