I looked forward to a kayak trip planned from the Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum with 41 North Kayak Adventures. Unfortunately, due to the Tall Ships being in town this trip did not work out. A different tour turned out just as beautiful if not more. We kayaked on beautiful Lake Erie and witnessed an amazing sunset. We also experience the Cleveland skyline and the Lakewood Cliffs.
I arrived in Rocky River, which is around 10 miles west of downtown Cleveland. In the Emerald Necklace Marina my guide, Josh, waited for me with a sea kayak. This trip would be my maiden voyage in a sea kayak; however, I have paddled a kayak on a river many times.
Josh gave me some kayaking tips. I have kayaked many times before, but never taken any formal training. Josh taught me that it is best to paddle with your back and abdomen as well as your arms instead of just your arms.
I have always used just my arms. This never really mattered because in my previous kayaking experiences I used the current of the river to power me downstream. Paddling on a big lake especially with wind involved changes things.
Paddling up the Rocky River to Lake Erie
We started out on the Rocky River and wound our way through drift wood and dodged boaters while we paddled towards the mouth of the river onward to Lake Erie. Before emptying out in the lake we paddled in this bay lined with river front houses and docks including the Elliot Ness home. The home of the famous former prohibition agent now acts as a private club with a private beach on the other side.
We continued towards the lake and passed a rocky point that extended out into the water. Great blue herons and sea gulls flew ahead of us and patrolled the water for fish.
Once we swung out into the lake we paddled east towards the city. On our right were limestone cliffs with beautiful houses lined precariously closed to the edge. Some of the houses were a little too close to comfort on the edge as erosion was taking its toll.
We paddled next to each other and traded outdoor stories and mutual places we have been. I would talk about canoeing in Wisconsin or Canada and Josh would talk about rivers in the lower peninsula of Michigan or the Erie Islands farther west. It is always fun talking to other outdoor enthusiasts, especially ones that hail from different regions as you get the scoop on places to check out that you have never been to.
Paddling towards the Cleveland skyline
Lake Erie was unusually placid, and we were able to continue our paddle an extra mile. The advantage of this is we swung around a point and the Cleveland skyline came into view. I took several pictures of the bow of the kayak I was using with the skyline framed in the distance, for it was a beautiful sight.
We then turned around and had an even more awesome sight to feast our eyes on. Clouds covered the actual sunset, but the pinkish light of the waning sun reflected on the water was just gorgeous. I kept stopping to take pictures in the amazing light.
Soon we were back to Rocky River and the trip was over. We brought the equipment back to the shed and said my goodbyes to Josh.
Lake Erie sunset
As I was driving away I noticed an intense pink or more like a red or purple light on the western horizon. I drove around trying to find a good vantage point. I pulled into a marina and got out and snapped a few photos with the boats in the foreground.
I drove back to Cleveland quite pleased with a pleasant paddle, a beautiful sunset, and the sight of the Cleveland skyline in my thoughts.
If you are in Cleveland, check out a tour with 41 North. Besides this cliffs tour they also have a Cleveland Rocks Tour, which brings you right up to downtown. The tour I was on usually does not wind up at the lookout over the skyline, but you can also rent kayaks from this outfit or go out on your own to see the skyline. Check out their website for tours, classes, trips and follow them on Facebook.
This tour with 41 North Kayak adventures was sponsored by Positively Cleveland Tourist Bureau, but the photos (except for the one), views, opinions, and stories are purely my own.
The goal of Traveling Ted is to inspire people to outdoor adventure travel and then provide tips on where and how to go. If you liked this post then sign up for the email newsletter. Notifications are sent out once or twice a month with what is new with Traveling Ted’s adventures. There is no spam and email information will not be shared. Other e-follow options include Facebook (click on the like box to the right) or twitter (click on the pretty bird on the rainbow above).
Beautiful kayaking photos! Too bad that one guy got in the one of your skyline photo 🙂
I’m going kayaking at the end of this month to a place many people would never think of kayaking!
Jeremy Branham recently posted..A sacrebleu Sacre Coeur sunset
Yea, that turkey with the hat seems to follow me around 🙂 Look forward to hearing about this mystery kayaking trip.
Awesome photos. I love the one of the sunset after you finished the ride. I haven’t kayaked enough to feel comfortable on a big body of water, but I need to look into that. I’d definitely be solo. No way my wife would venture out on the lake like that.
Trips By Lance recently posted..Discovering Indianapolis Culture
The sea kayaks are very stable in big water and waves, but on this trip it was not necessary anyway as the water was very calm. They will not take people out on the tour if the wind and water is too turbulent.
And there I thought you were an expert kayaker. Your arms will fall off if you paddle any great distance without using your core – as I too have learned from experience. Looks like a truly beautiful way to experience Cleveland – and what a perfect evening you got for it.
Perhaps you want to join a group I’m organizing for a week’s sea kayaking next July in Haida Gwaii – formerly the Queen Charlottes now that you’ve had a taste of it.
Leigh recently posted..45 Random Observations About Nova Scotia
I have done my fair share of kayaking, but I have done the lion’s share of my outdoor’s experience (at least on the water) with a canoe. I would not call myself an expert canoeist either, but I have a ton more experience in these boats. I would love to join you if the timing is right in Queen Charlottes.
Looks perfect Ted. Right up my alley. Have not kayaked down there yet but with sunsets like that, I could easily see myself doing it! Thanks for the destination inspiration.
Anita Mac recently posted..Monday Morning Series: Kite Surfing in Mallorca
Thank Anita Mac,
I hope you get a chance to try it out sometime. Anywhere on the Great Lakes though will fit the bill.
I love kayaking and this looks like a great place to do it. Great tip about using your abs. That’s actually one of the reasons I like kayaking — ab workout! 😉
Christy recently posted..“My Enchanting Town” Garuda Indonesia Photo Contest
Kayaking on the Great Lakes is always beautiful as long as the wind does not whip up. Have to be careful on the big waves. Fortunately, it was a calm day.
What a sunset! I think I would like to give this a try one of these days. Kayaking is really something I think I would enjoy.
Erin at The World Wanderer recently posted..Transport Your Taste Buds Cooking Series.
Kayaking is a great way to explore places you normally cannot get to.
Great skyline, lake and sunset shots Ted wow! Have captured the Cleveland skyline and Lake Erie from everywhere, well everywhere on land that is. I need to get out onto the open Lake Erie waters sometime. 🙂
Aaron recently posted..Photo(s) of the Week: Amongst the Flowers in Detroit.
I would recommend it Aaron. It definitely is a different perspective.
The sunset and your pictures were gorgeous! I’m impressed! You can’t beat the colors of that sunset and the city skyline! I guess it worked out that you couldn’t go on your original tour!
lola dimarco recently posted..Four Seasons Miami – Reasons to Escape South Beach
I am sure the original tour would have been cool too, but I think the view of the skyline was better from farther away.
Oh wow.. that’s one stellar sunset. I rarely get to see them in shades of pink and purple – very cool!
And it was not even #Sunsetsunday.
gorgeous! there’s free kayaking in the hudson, which i’ve heard also has amazing views… but the fear of falling in is just too great. i don’t want a third arm growing out of my forehead or something.
the lazy travelers recently posted..no travel required: #frifotos
We have that same issue on the Chicago River. I am canoeing on it this weekend. If you see a third arm on me next time we meet, you will know I fell in.
Awesome way to see the city. I had no idea there were cliffs leading into Lake Erie…
D.J. – The World of Deej recently posted..Rainy Night in Atlanta – Random Picture of the Week
The interesting thing about the cliffs is people built houses right on the edge, which is causing a problem due to erosion.
Leave it to Ted to bring the outdoors to the city. 😀 Very cool! Gotta love skyline views from the water.
Pola (@jettingaround) recently posted..Hangout: Public Craft Brewing Co. in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Yes, I have been busy on the skyline outdoors combination lately.
i wish i could do kayaking at some point of time in my life..
I hope so too Atika. It is a fun adventure activity.
Sunset kayaking with the city backdrop looks so fun! Surprised you haven’t sea kayaked before, Ted (wow, I actually beat you to it!). I’m sure you were a natural 🙂
Leslie recently posted..NYC Marathon training guide: The best scenic running trails in Manhattan
I have kayaked and canoed many times, but I prefer a river over a sea or a big lake. I am not a big fan of big open water. Rivers are much more interesting and safer in my opinion.
Nice kayaking trip and the sunset is a beauty. Amazing view. So how was your first kayaking in a big open water?
Rick recently posted..The Best Fishfinder for Kayaks
Fortunately, it was a calm day, so I did not have to contend with waves. It was a great tour and trip with beautiful views and a fantastic sunset.