November 7, 2013 marked Chesapeake Kayak Adventures (CKA) Second Anniversary on Meetup.com. As we enter our third year on Meetup, we’ve grown to over 1150 members and held over 315 events. We’ve been featured in the Baltimore Sun, Howard Magazine and Maryland Public Televisions’s Outdoors Maryland. Meetup.com has rated us as one of the Best Outdoor Recreation Meetups in the world and currently ranks CKA as the largest, most active kayaking dedicated Meetup Group in the United States.
If you’re looking to get out and paddle we are one of the most active kayak clubs in the Baltimore/Washington area but we are so much more than a Meetup Group. During the prime kayaking season we offer several events every week and are constantly looking for ways to offer more.
One of CKA’s main goals is to make kayaking with the safety and camaraderie of a group accessible to everyone regardless of their skill level or the type of boat they own. Many of our paddles do require the proper skills and gear for safety’s sake but we try to offer a lot that don’t. Our Wednesday Night Paddlers are a great example of those that don’t.
If you don’t have your own kayak, that isn’t a problem. CKA has a fleet of very high quality touring kayaks that members can rent at our events. Rental prices range from $25.00 for weeknight paddles to $55.00 for our premium weekend paddles and $95.00 for weekend long camping trips. All you have to do is answer yes to the rental question when you RSVP and show up to find your kayak, paddle and PFD waiting for you. There simply isn’t another outfitter anywhere that offers this kind of service.
If you would like to learn to kayak or perhaps how to do a better job of it we offer premium kayak instruction at some of the most competitive prices you can find. Whether you’re looking for an intro, intermediate or a master’s class we have an opportunity for you. Our instructors are certified by the American Canoe Association and if you’d like to become a certified instructor we can even arrange a class for that.
We paddle on flat-water lakes, reservoirs and easier non-whitewater rivers in the Chesapeake Bay watershed which means Maryland and the surrounding states. When weather and water conditions allow we get out on the Chesapeake Bay itself and it’s tidal tributaries. You won’t find our events on whitewater rivers or 3 foot white capped waves in the Bay but we have lots of members that appreciate growing their skills in more challenging waters.
Our season usually runs from sometime in March or April through November or December depending on the weather. Over the winter, when water temperatures get cold and dangerous, some members switch to hikes to stay active as a group. Those members with cold water gear do still get out and paddle occasionally on warmer days.
2014 will be our Organizer, Chuck’s 7th year organizing kayak trips in a venue like Meetup. He is an American Canoe Association (ACA) certified instructor who has been kayaking for 20 years. His experience includes 7 years as a kayak instructor and member of the management team for LL Bean’s Outdoor Discovery School. His passion for kayaking brings lots of joy to his life and he loves to share it with others. We Jokingly refer to him as Fearless Leader after a character from the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon show which some of you may remember.
Many of our members met while paddling with a Yahoo Group known as The Wednesday Night Paddler. It was an opportunity for people to paddle with a group on Wednesday nights after work. We worked on our skills and staying in shape while paddling off the day’s stress. As everyone made new friends the Wednesday night paddles also become quite a social event. They still continue in that tradition.
We charge an annual membership fee but it is TOTALLY voluntary. You don’t have to pay anything to paddle with us if you have your own kayak and gear. Members who pay the voluntary annual dues do get some perks like reduced cost rentals and priority on the wait list. We’d love to have you on the water with us.