With a 24-hour kayak or canoe rental, adventurers can explore local water holes, such as Randleman Reservoir, Lake Brandt, High Point City Lake, and Salem Lake, on their own. Glide past verdant foliage, through glittering reflections of aged bridges, and into largemouth bass’ large mouths while your watercraft slices through waves faster than a machete master defending himself against rogue Jell-O. Get:Outdoors’ top-notch equipment makes it easy for both cub canoeists and professional paddlers to achieve their smooth, blue, shimmering dreams; recreational kayaks are available from Wilderness Systems and Native Watercraft, and colorful canoes are manufactured by Mad River, the same company that designed the Santa Maria. The rental fee includes paddles and life jackets, as well as straps and foam blocks to keep boats’ keels from scratching your vehicle’s paint.
Students at The Rock MMA & Fitness Center get the chance to learn from and train with an undefeated professional boxer, a 10-year jujitsu veteran, and a professional mixed-martial-arts fighter. All accolades just happen to belong to one man, Coach Matt. Joined by wrestling veteran Coach Brian and a team of qualified instructors, Matt teaches a full week of martial-arts classes, such as kickboxing, jujitsu, boxing, and mixed martial arts. He rounds out the schedule with conditioning and fitness-focused training, including a boot camp and hours set aside for open use of any of the gym's equipment.
For years, Captain Sonny Kay plied the waters of the Caribbean in his yacht, the Saltshaker. Then, in 1983, he headed north to Lake Norman to share the joy of boating with others. Over the years, he amassed a fleet of other watercraft, and though he's since retired, Brian and Nichole MacArthur carry on his legacy today at Saltshaker Marine. Depending on the type of aquatic adventure folks are looking for, the duo puts together custom rental packages for pontoons and wave-runners.
A bearded and scruffy Shawn Hash launched his outfitting business 20 years ago with a spartan collection of four bicycles, two canoes, and a pickup truck. Tangent Outfitters now oversees a small flotilla of aquatic craft as it leads guests to all the outdoor adventures the New River and its surrounding valley have to offer. Tubing trips afford a leisurely 1- to 2-mile jaunt down the river, with plenty of pit stops at sunny beaches, swimming holes, or riverside nail salons. Instructors bring a slice of Hawaiian watersports to Virginia with standup paddleboard lessons or teach guests to snag unsuspecting smallmouths with guided fishing trips. The surrounding mountainous trails invite bikers to speed through their dirt-stained paths, and the riverbeds host seven different types of kayak and canoe day trips. Adventurers can stock up on excursion rations at Tangent's onsite deli.
Claytor Lake Water Sports' fleet of rental boats and water equipment lets customers float, relax, and play amid the local wildlife and camera-ready sights of Claytor Lake. Canoes, kayaks, and motorized vessels such as pontoon boats snake along the lake's 21 miles of narrow and winding waterways, where spotted bass swim and test scuba gear beneath the surface. Flanked by lush trees, speedboats race across the water and lure adventurous riders perched atop water skis and other towables.
In addition to renting boats and gear, the staff at Claytor Lake Water Sports takes sightseers on scenic lake tours. They also maintain a commitment to the environment, equipping most of their watercrafts with electronic fuel injections and four-stroke engines that produce lower emissions and brighter rainbows.
For more than 30 years, Water World Scuba & Marine's experienced staff has mentored aspiring amphibians with a medley of scuba courses. The Discover Scuba class outlines basic subaquatic skills in an area pool, and outfits students with all the necessary equipment for a proper first-time plunge. Schools of 8–10 swimmers follow PADI lesson plans during the one-hour seminar, which permits pupils to flipper down to an average dive depth of 12 feet—the ideal depth for safely making raspberries at passing jet skiers. After the course, participants may opt to continue their underwater education and credit their time toward future PADI Open Water Diver certification. Aquanauts should call ahead to reserve classes, and must bring their own bathing suit, towel, and sea-snake-handling tongs.