learn to kayak

Lonely kayaks in Ohiopyle: help stop the madness!

Ohiopyle needs your help!  A number of lonely kayaks were found today. Help stop the abuse by coming out and putting these kayaks back in the water where they belong.

Ohiopyle kayaks wilderness voyageurs

Kayaks waiting for you

How do you help?

1) Get in your car and leave the hot concrete jungle behind

2) Join us for a Learn to Kayak weekend  (next up July 28 & 29)

3) Arrive in Ohiopyle where the water temperature is a sweeeeet 65 degrees

4)  Follow the lead of your kayak instructor Josh. He is here to help.

Ohiopyle kayak instruction wilderness voyageurs

Lead Kayak instructor josh

5) Listen for the ahhhh and thank you from the kayak you just saved

6) Listen to your inner self saying thank you for taking me to the river

Kayaking in Ohiopyle wilderness voyageurs

Kayak & your sanity saved!

Call Wilderness Voyageurs at 800-272-4141 to get started  Learning how to kayak.  The kayaks thank you!

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett Street, Ohiopyle, PA 15470



Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak, Ohiopyle | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Shiva commands you to have a blast on the river!


The Shivas are here!  We got all three sizes of Pyranha Shivas in stock.  I have tried both the large and the medium.  I am around 5’10” and weigh in at svelte 200 lbs.  I thought the large would be it for me, but I thanks to the indomitable John Regan, I gave the medium a second look and am really enjoying it.    I had fun in large Shiva, but at 92 gallons, I feel it was just too big for me.  It would take over sometimes and it was difficult to wrangle back under control, whereas I felt more nimble in the medium, carving and controlling the “charc” with more ease than the larger version.  Furthermore, I was paddling a large Burn before, and the medium is actually a bigger boat.  Longer and with more volume, it floated me fine.  Plus, it is more narrow, especially around the cockpit, making it more comfortable to sit in, not having to have my knees all splayed out, and also making it easier to transfer edges and roll.

I put both boats through their paces by paddling them down our local creek/big water combo of Meadow Run into the Loop of Yough.  Those boats boofed, carved, surfed, went down the slides right side up and facing downhill, caught eddies, and generally killed it!  Again though, the medium was the winner of the two.  It was just more manageable.  I think if I was 6’3′ and 200 lbs the large may have been fine, but just lacking that extra leverage, I felt, put me at a disadvantage.  The one thing I am going to try tomorrow on the Lower Big Sandy though, is to move the seat back one notch in the medium.

I have been a firm disciple of the burn for years now, but this boat may just change my mind.  Maybe it’s just because I am not as edgy as I used to be, but what you lose in the crispness, you gain in speed, nimbleness, ease in rolling, and stability.  And, heck, you can still surf waves, navigate the bubbling big water, and ferry across the confusing currents.

Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pyranha Shivas are in

Some new Pyranha Shivas were delivered yesterday:

From the Pyranha guys:

The Shiva has a rounded hull, soft stern chines, a high bow rocker and loads of volume in the bow and stern.

These features give you softer landings on big drops, rear driving force when you want it, awesome boofability and resurfacing capability. The rounded & high deck, with a high centre of volume, countering a low centre of gravity for easy rollability.

If you are running big drops and pushing harder lines the Shiva is the one you want.

We’ll have some reports up once we get the boats down the river a few times.

If you’d like to take one out, give us a call at 1.800.272.4141 and reserve a demo. We have larges and mediums.

posted by Montana

Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Friday Night(evening) Loop Runs Commence

Finally, summer can officially begin now that Friday night loop runs on the lower Youghiogheny River have begun. We had a terrific group of Wilderness Voyageurs staff and a few new participants to joined in on the fun. What a terrific way to start off the holiday weekend. The water level seems to be holding at a steady  something making for a great way for folks to really step up there surfing, boofs and playboating. Just a few yards into the loop is the “DQ” wave/hole which at this water level is sticky enough for

crowd pleasing loops and yet forgiving enough for first time spinners.  Entrance rapid has waves all through it that are easy to catch on the fly and there is always Nemos hole for some powerful fast spins and cartwheelin if you can get your timing down. Cucumber has a really sick wave if you are daring enough to go for it and if not you can just punch it and enjoy the waves behind. Eddie hopping and stern squirts line the rest of the loop pretty much anywhere you look. Camel Walrus rapid has a terrific wave to boof line if you know where to turn and Dartmouth rapid turns nice and wavy. Railroad rapid has multiple lines from boofs to slots and even a fun slide where a well-timed rock spin will make for a nice topping to your loop run. There really is so much to do and try while out there on the loop. I’ve been paddling it now for 7 seasons and I still look forward to each on. For those who do not know it this well there is no way to learn the insandouts of this section than with us on Friday nights. You can do this. You should be here. Friday evenings 5:30 till park closes. c u there

Learn to kayak in Ohiopyle

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett Street Ohiopyle PA 15470





Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak, Ohiopyle | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

There is nothing like it- kayaking that is

Yesterday, while on an evening “loop” (youghiogheny river) run on the with a few friends we shared an interesting insight into kayaking.  The water level is up a little, which allows for creativity in boat choice. My friend was trying out a longer glass boat of yesteryear, others chose to dabble and surf in play boats and I, a creature of habit, was in my Pyranha Burn.  The topic that intrigued us was that there really is no limit to how creative you can be on the water once you have learned the necessary skills for kayaking.  There is no comparison when it comes to creativity and ingenuity of people sharing a love for moving water.  Sure there are different surf board, snow skis, snow boards and bicycles, but those all change with the conditions that they are choosing to challenge. Yesterday, there were 5 people, 5 different boats, and 5 totally different experiences while on the same moving arena for exploration. Where can it lead you?

Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak, Outdoor Gear | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Learn to kayak

Time to focus on summer fun.  Around Ohiopyle, that means kayaking!  If you have a few river miles under your belt, then this time of year means lots of river options that do not normally exist.

Think about kayaking the Casselman River, a great class 2 and class 3 whitewater run, located in Somerset County about 30 minutes from Ohiopyle.  It is a great section of river to head for when the Lower Yough is to high for comfort.  If the Yough is over 5 feet there is a really good chance that the Casselman is at a runnable level.  Between 2 feet and 4 feet on the Casselman there are a lot of friendly well defined features, eddies with strong eddy lines, surfing holes that are forgiving.   This week we had a number of kayak students in town to shake off the rust, and they were lucky enough for this treat.

great kayak learning river
Typical rapid on Casselman River
Learning to kayak in Pennsylvania

Spring day on the Casselman River

If you have any interest in learning how to kayak, now is the season, and learning to kayak in Pennsylvania is the way to go.  We have some many rivers that are easy to access and that you can kayak most of the year, and you have the  experience of Wilderness Voyageurs to draw upon.

Get in a kayak this week!

See you on the river.

Categories: Kayaking on the Youghiogheny River, learn to kayak, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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