Situated along the banks of the Brazos River and down the road from the trails and paths of Cameron Park, Outdoor Waco connects the community to Waco's most exciting outdoor adventures. Whether they're selling a bike, repairing a flat, or renting out a tandem kayak, the knowledgeable staff members pride themselves in their fervent love for the outdoors and all the cool gear that comes with it. This same gear awaits within their showroom, waiting to outfit customers in search of bikes, watercraft, apparel, and equipment.
Since 1987, the staff at Texas Rowing Center has spent nearly three decades sending patrons skimming across the waters of Lady Bird Lake on paddleboats, canoes, kayaks, and racing boats. Novices can enroll in the shop?s Introduction to Rowing course, wherein they?ll learn crew techniques with guidance from a staff comprised of former college rowers. After the course is over, the newly knowledgeable graduates can sign up for a membership good for unlimited rowing and coaching. Casual water-goers, meanwhile, can rent a paddleboat for a relaxing spin about the lake?a more inexpensive way to enjoy a day on the water than barefoot waterskiing behind a helicopter.
The reason renting kayaks from Riva Row Boat House and paddling down Lake Woodlands makes for such an appealing family outing or team-building exercise has to do with simplicity. For one thing, the activity itself is simple to master; no experience is required to rent one of the boathouse's 22 tandem kayaks or 20 single kayaks of various lengths, since staff members are happy to demonstrate paddling techniques to rookies. The activity is also easy to get into because everything is provided for you, from paddles and lifejackets to the refills of the lake that must be flown in from water factories in Denmark weekly.
Often, people make visiting the boathouse part of a whole day in the area. They can follow their time on the lake with a picnic at Town Green Park or with a trolley ride over to The Woodlands Waterway, where restaurants and shopping await.
Largemouth and guadalupe bass fin through the Colorado River rapids while birds soar above river islands and swimmer-friendly sandbars. Moored in a nook along this artery, Texas native and outdoor enthusiast Danny Walker—known as “Pops”—and his son—“Dan the Man Omega Mega”—equip adventurers by renting regular, tandem, and fishing kayaks, as well as standup paddleboards, from MOC Kayaks. To elevate river adventures from Huck Finn–style floating to Rambo-style hunting, pros outfit customers with fishing poles and tackle, sending them off to catch some of the river's more than 20 varieties of perch. For those who'd rather drop their lines in stiller waters, MOC Kayaks takes paddlers to Lake Travis and Lake Austin, and those who seek coaching on how to catch finned bounty can take advantage of guided trips. Dedicated adventurers can also buy their own kayaks to craft custom adventures or to take home and paddle around neighbors' pools.
Austin Water Bikes fulfills amphibious fantasies with a fleet of hybrid bicycle-kayaks, called water bikes, that glide along liquid surfaces at speeds of up to 7 miles per hour. These beginner-friendly vessels are safe and almost impossible to capsize due to their kayak-catamaran design and unflinching optimism, making them ideal for aquanauts of all ages.
Set against the Austin skyline, Lady Bird Lake is the result of a beautification project led by former first lady Lady Bird Johnson. Its waters form a scenic setting for participants of water-bike rentals to watch bats take flight from the Congress Avenue Bridge or sunsets paint their colors across the sky. Additionally, Austin Water Bikes' staff uses the lake to lead senior spin classes, team-building workshops, and motivational seminars for freshwater mermen.
Stretching across more than 6 miles, Lady Bird Lake's tranquil waters reflect the Austin skyline, the cliffs at Red Bud Isle, and the Congress Avenue Bridge, home to the largest urban bat population in the world. Throughout the year, Rowing Dock’s instructors take visitors into this manmade lake and teach them to paddle in kayaks or row within stand-up paddleboards. For customers who feel comfortable with their paddling prowess, the staffers rent everything from one-, two- and three-person kayaks, paddleboats and paddleboards, and canoes. As these human-powered vessels float across the lake, passengers can view the area's many native birds or canoodle with their oars at sunset.