This blog is designed to highlight the paddling opportunities within South Dakota, mainly within a 50-mile radius of Sioux Falls. While Sioux Falls is far from the adventure of coastal regions, there is a certain satisfaction in utilizing the available waterways to observe weather, water conditions, and the landscape along the shoreline. In addition, there is a wealth of animal life on the waters of small South Dakota lakes, rivers, and creeks, including geese, ducks, pelicans, great blue heron, egrets, hawks, owls, perching birds, deer, raccoons, and beaver. Eagles, fox, and coyote are also sometimes spotted.

The sites described are places where I have kayaked over the past few years, mostly in South Dakota but sometimes including locations in Iowa and Minnesota. One of the best sources of information on the accessibility of small lakes is the South Dakota Atlas and Gazetteer, the large map book of South Dakota. Lakes with a public access are generally identified by a boat symbol marking the location of a launching site on public land.

You will notice the menu of paddling locations on the right side of the blog. Each of the postings is linked to one of the areas, and my intention is to provide a continuing review of the places where I paddle. Perhaps these narratives will help readers select waterways of interest to them. Please feel free to offer a comment regarding any of my postings; I would welcome the dialog.

I also maintain a companion blog that describes hiking opportunities within the Sioux Falls area. You can access that blog at:

Monday, January 23, 2012

Annual SDCKA Conference


The following notice is taken from the SDCKA website ( "The SD Canoe & Kayak Association will be hosting its annual conference on Saturday, January 28, 2012 at The Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls from noon to 4:00 PM this Saturday, January 28."

"The conference will include presentations on waterways, safety, and conservation along with booths featuring various vendors. There will also be a short business meeting to elect new board members for 2012. Contact Steven at if you're interested in joining the board."

I hope that readers of this blog will be drawn to the conference. The presentations will be both interesting and encouraging for area paddlers. Even though we are now deep into winter, it is only eight weeks or so before we might hope to get in the first cruising of the season. This is also a great time to network with other paddlers and to form relationships that will grow into common cruising experiences. I hope to see many of you at the Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls on Saturday, January 28.