The Potomac is the best place to kayak

You shouldn’t live in the DC area and not kayak– it’s that good!

Kayaking in DC is worth all the hype and more. If you’re not kayaking in the DMV yet it’s not too late to start with Calleva’s River School.

Have you ever hiked the Billy Goat trail or been to Great Falls? Have you seen those crazy people in bright colored plastic boats going down the waterfalls?

Most of them started kayaking on the little ripples of the Potomac River. The DMV is one of the biggest paddling communities in the world. Are you missing it?

You wouldn’t live in Vail and not ski. The same goes for kayaking on the Potomac River!

What is it like to Kayak on the Potomac River?

Imagine yourself on a summer day in DC, escaping the heat by driving less than a mile to immerse yourself in the fresh waters of the Potomac River. 

A bald eagle flies overhead and a turtle sleeps on a log next to the bank. This is a reprieve thousands of locals experience weekly. Why not you?

Upriver of Georgetown lies 6 different sections of river ripe for exploring with rapids ranging from class 1-5. You can also paddle upriver to many different wave features. 

Some people are there on surfboards, others are doing flips in their playboats. They are there for soul surfing sessions. 

Paddlers exchange stories while waiting in the lineup for their turn all the while escaping the traffic just downstream on the American Legion Bridge.   

Others prefer to enjoy the Potomac like joining a gym. Kayaking for exercise is more dynamic and enjoyable than the gym. The Potomac also provides better scenery than the beefcakes taking selfies with their max bench press in the background.

 At any point during a paddle on the Potomac you may be passed by an Olympic athlete training for the next race, a 15-year-old kid that just got out of school, or 75 year-old Tom McEwan — he was the first person to run Great Falls. 

The Potomac is not just a river that separates states. It is a place that brings together a community of people that know the river heals all and will keep them moving with the flow. 

Learn to Kayak on the Potomac River 

Calleva’s River School is the best place to learn to kayak in the DC area. Our kayak lessons are designed to take you to every section of the Potomac River. 

We will start out on the flat waters near Riley’s Lock at the confluence of Seneca Creek. Once we get the basics under us we will move further down the C&O Canal to bigger rapids in the Mather Gorge and under the American Legion Bridge. 

During programs at Calleva’s River School, we provide practice nights located on the Olympic training course just a mile up from Chain Bridge. Then we take you down Little Falls which flows under that same bridge. 

After a few years of training, you might be ready for Great Falls. It is the local class 5 section that contains numerous waterfalls. 

All beginner kayak lessons include kayak rentals. You instructors could be former national team members, sponsored athletes, or a lawyer that might just enjoy spreading their passion to others.

What are you waiting for? 

Calleva’s River School classes and kayak tours minutes from DC

Kayak rentals and other gear are included in the following classes:

  • Zero to Hero– Our month long intensive whitewater kayak program including 33 hours of instruction. 
  • Intro to Kayak Touring– 10 hours of instruction time focused on getting you from the river into the sea. 
  • River Experiences-– comprised as 4 experiences from a moonlit to a monument kayak tour.

For more information on the Calleva’s River School offerings please visit our site here or contact us at [email protected].