It is a sunny, beautiful day here in Portland Oregon and so many people just feel the need to get out for a run, a bike, or a game of ultimate frisbee in the park. But why not just run to the local rental shop and do a little stand up paddle boarding on the beautiful Columbia river.
SUP’ing, has become the fad in Oregon as well and is a great way to stay fit and healthy while you work on getting a tan which is rare in these parts. Oregon has so many bodies of water for everyone to discover and have fun on. You tend to see tons of people on the hot summer days with their new SUP’s having a blast stroking away, while having a ton of fun with the family in the process.
A little SUP History:
If you didn’t know, paddle boarding has been around since the 1960’s and was popularized by surf instructors on the Hawaiian Islands. The paddle boards then were used by the surf instructors to help manage large groups of surfing students. It helped to give them a better eye over their groups and helped them be able to see the incoming swell much better. It also gave them the freedom to take photos of the tourists so they could make a few extra bucks on top of lessons.
Paddle Board surfing is one of the fastest growing water sports today. It gives you a wider range freedom to surf more breaks and on all kinds of tides unlike surfing. Laird Hamilton and Dave Kalama are 2 of the main reasons that stand up paddle boarding has become such a big hit today. They brought this sport back due to boredom in the summer when swells were too small and still wanting to be out in the water having fun and training for the winter surf. They also realized that because of the paddle and bigger board, they could catch waves earlier than surfing and get out faster which allowed them to catch more waves. It was a win win.
Back To Paddle Boarding
Flat water paddle boarding is a huge draw and gives you a great solid core workout. So many people are discovering that SUP boards are quick and easy to learn on unlike surfing that takes a lot of balance, time and athleticism. Any person regardless of age can be easily paddling through waters with just an hand full of instructions and about an hour of practice. This opens the doors older water lovers, that may not be athletic enough to surf, an opportunity to still get out there on the open water, without little worry about any kind of injury. In Oregon, multiple women have opened up Paddle Boarding businesses because of all of the health benefits and positives it brings like building strength, burning calories, great cardio, and spending time with their family and friends. Women tend to pick up paddle boarding much faster than even men. If you’re thinking of getting a new Paddle Board, be sure to check out our paddle board sales page for the latest deals online.
Places To Paddle Board In Oregon:
Here is a short list of some great places to visit, get equipment rentals from, and places to paddle board in Oregon:
1. Hood River, OR / Columbia River Gorge
Good Spot: Just downriver from the toll bridge is the Hood River delta next to the marina.
Rental Shops: Big Winds is a great rental shop in Hood River. They have a great selection of boards and gear as well as a great and knowledgable staff on hand. Also, Gorge Paddling Center, they have Bic paddle boards which are great and high quality.
2. Bend, OR
Good Spot: The Deschutes River – The Old Mill portion.
Rental Shop: Right on the river is Tumalo Creek Kayak and Canoe. It is the best place in Bend to rent paddle boards. They will also drop you off up river so you can board right back to the rental shop.
3. Oregon Coast
Good Spot: Just South of Seaside is a popular beach called Short Sands Beach. You will only want to board this on a smaller surf day as when the waves get bigger there, they can really work you over. You will also probably want a wetsuit if you plan to get wet.
Rental Shop: Cleanline Surf has a great selection and has 2 locations, one in Cannon Beach and one in Seaside. They have a really great staff and can help guide you for the best spot to go on a particular day based on wind and surf size.
4. Portland, OR
Good Spot: West Linn, just take exit 6 off of HWY 205
Rental Shop- Gorge Performance will have everything that you need or want to have a great day on the water in Portland. Their rental rates are somewhere between $25-$40 all depending on the time of year and what day you are looking to rent gear.
Gear You Will Need:
- Stand Up Paddleboard
- Sup Paddles
- Flotation Device (Life Jackets)
- Dry Bags (optional)
If you are looking for SUP lessons or SUP yoga classes near Portland Oregon, I would visit Portland Paddle. They have everything from classes to SUP rentals and even Kayak rentals and gear. They do everything from guided tours to giving a private lesson if needed.
What Are Some Of Your Favorite Places?
These are obviously only a few of the spots to board and places for board rentals as well as lessons, but we would love to hear your favorite places in and around Portland as well. Where is your next SUP adventure? Just leave a comment below where you think is the best spot.