Monday, September 5, 2011

Paddling Pittsburgh: Kayaking the Allegheny and the Ohio

For the past two or three summers, one of the items at the top of my to-do list has been kayaking on the rivers downtown. My intentions were always there, I just never made it happen. But, when presented with a visitor, who was making their SECOND trip to Pittsburgh in 2011, I had to come up with something awesome to do. I had to show off my city in an even grander way than I had just a few months prior. What better way to see Pittsburgh than gliding on top of one of its three rivers?

Corey, Carrie and I picked up my visitor Marlana from the airport and drove straight to the North Shore. She went right from the plane to the kayak. She is, indeed, a trooper.

We made our way under the Clemente Bridge and signed up for kayaks with Kayak Pittsburgh. It was $15/hour for a single kayak, which seemed fairly reasonable, and once we got into the water and began paddling around, it was worth every penny.

Corey and Carrie have synchronized strokes.

I was a little surprised at the lack of instruction given to us before embarking on our short little journey on the river. But, we were given lifejackets, paddles, and a kayak and shoved into the water. We were on our own and could explore as much as we pleased within the 60-minute timeframe. We decided to kayak down to the point to give Marlana the best view of downtown.

From plane to kayak in just under an hour!

Corey had more fun than this photo suggests.

Here's a thing: I have no desire to own a car. Pretty much ever. Don't see a need for one. However, I could totally foresee buying a boat some years down the road - er, river. Sitting in the kayak on the top of the water was such a relaxing experience. If I had a boat, I would be on it every single nice day in the summer. Will probably definitely have to buy a boat when I'm rich. (I'm never gonna be rich - this is a pipe dream.)

Carrie in her kayak, scoping out the Science Center's submarine.

Corey on the river.

Marlana on the river.

Is there a day in my life when I am not going under or over a bridge in some capacity? Pittsburgh: I adore you for this.

Dorky self-portrait - had to be done! (Even though I totally look photoshopped...)

By the end of our hour on the river(s) we were tired, kinda sunburnt, and hungry.

The solution to our problems: beers and burgers at the always-getting-more-awesomer Winghart's in Market Square. Seriously: the best burger in Pittsburgh. Love this place so so so much.

Ill have to ask Marlana to be sure, but I'm fairly certain landing in Pittsburgh and experiencing kayaking on the rivers and a Winghart's burger was something akin to a religious experience.

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