Napa Valley Paddle teaches people to walk on water. Armed with a fleet of stand-up paddleboards, instructors get riverine explorers up and standing during a brief on-shore lesson. From there, guests have unfettered access to the exclusive northern views of the pristine and revitalized Napa River, where they glide along its reed-lined shores through downtown to see the river's natural contours.
The sport is known for its cross-training and ab-blasting benefits, and in addition to being an effective exercise, it can also double as bonding experience. To that end, Napa Valley Paddle leads educational tours or team-building excursions.
Situated along the Lower Russian River, Monte Rio Recreation & Park District supplements trips to the beach or paddling along the water in a rented kayak or canoe. On-site, events are regularly held for the community that include yoga alongside redwoods, historic walks and picnics, or casual meetups for cycling clubs. The park also hosts weddings throughout the year, with indoor and outdoor venues available to accommodate any size ceremony and reception.
River's Edge Kayak & Canoe Trips' owner Lollie Mercer likes to joke about being in the business of curing nature-deficiency disorder. It's certainly true that sunlight and exercise provide the body with a whole host of benefits, and Lollie's customers get plenty of those riding the rapids of the Russian River. She and her staff outfit guests with one of six types of boats, which include styles that range from the classic canoe to double kayaks. Self-guided groups embark on three- to six-hour trips where they navigate Class I and II rapids. When the water calms, they can view the abundant wildlife along the river's banks, including osprey, eagles, otters, and turtles. Eventually, groups land at River's Edge Beach, where Lollie and her crew collect gear and guests reunite with their less-awesome land-based vehicles.
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 1?2 hours
Brands Used: Boardworks SUPs
Pro Tip: Dress to get wet and bring your sense of adventure
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Guided Russian River trips
Recommended Age Group: All ages
Though Jeff Gehring is the owner and instructor of SUP Odyssey, the star of the production is his friendly dog, Zen, who loves perching at the bow of Jeff's stand-up paddleboard. And if Zen is the star, then his supporting cast is the picturesque scenery of the Russian River Valley, where guests ride paddleboards and take in the scenic views of a private lake surrounded by organic vineyards.
During his introductory stand-up paddleboard lessons, Jeff calls upon more than 30 years of experience to teach students the art of gliding atop water. Once they get a firm grasp on the basics, guests can embark on two-hour guided tours down the river, where they can spot redwood trees, turtles, fish, and different species of birds. When combined with the beautiful scenery, stand-up paddleboard yoga lessons help visitors relax and balance their mind and bodies.
Point Reyes Outdoors leads hiking, biking, and kayaking expeditions through the unsown hills of the Point Reyes National Seashore and the tranquil waters of the California coast. During kayak tours, explorers jaunt through the tidal waterways of Drakes Estero and sunset forays into Tomales Bay. Guided nature hikes explore the local bounty of flora and fauna such as marine mammals, wildflowers, or migratory lawn gnomes.
Nature specialists, such as biologists, nurses, and certified kayak instructors, lead all tours and provide insight into the landscape and its inhabitants. Point Reyes Outdoors also rents out mountain bikes, which guests can use to pedal through a circuit of nearby trails that climb Fir Top mountain or stretch out to Wildcat Beach.
Underneath the sky-blue rafters of Rockzilla's spacious indoor gym, a veritable mountain range of multicolored walls challenges climbers of all experience levels. Sheer-faced cliffs challenge the top-roping and lead-climbing techniques of both beginners and experts, and a mushroom-shaped structure builds skills in bouldering and reveals the fossil record of ancient screws and bolts. The mat-lined floor, harnesses, and dedication to belaying skills ensure every visitor's comfort and safety. In addition to hosting hangouts, parties, and team-building exercises onsite, Rockzilla crashes entire tectonic plates into customers' backyards, forming portable climbing walls available for rent.