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Colorado has more than 100,000 river miles, and more than 200,000 lake acres spread across the state. There are seven major river basins combined with dozens of lakes and reservoirs to choose when desiring to go kayaking. Whether wanting a lazy peaceful day on the water or a more adventurous challenge that whitewater presents, the pristine waterways in all categories are abundant.

Shadow Mountain Lake
The lake is part of the Arapaho National Recreation Area and is found north of Granby. The site also borders the Rocky Mountain National Park. The lake itself spans 1,400 acres surrounded by scenic hills and lush pine forests. However, there is a canal that connects to Grand Lake. The water mass also features several islands, which are ideal to stop and have a picnic. Motorized boats also frequent the lake. But, a few ripples from wakes are the only hazards that kayakers face.

Rifle Gap Reservoir
The 350-acre reservoir is found in Rifle Gap State Park. Along with having calm waters and beautiful scenery, kayakers can spend a few days camping at one of five different locations. A visitor’s center has a payphone, a gift shop, and exhibits. Some enjoy combining kayaking with fishing. The water mass is home to various species that include bass, perch, pike, trout, and walleye.

Sylvan Lake
The spectacular 42-acre alpine lake lies in the heart of the Rocky Mountains approximately 20 minutes south of the community of Eagle. Only boats with trolling motors are allowed here, making the location a calm place for relaxing kayaking excursions. The destination also welcomes campers. Stay in a tent or RV. However, there are also shoreline cabins available. The forested hills and mountains have miles of hiking trails. The lake is also stocked with trout annually.

Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park
The humanmade park was established on the Colorado River in Glenwood Springs. The destination accommodates novice paddlers and experienced alike. However, kayaking the river depends on matching skill levels with the time of year. New kayakers make the journey from July and later when the flow of the river slows. Expert kayakers take to the river from May to June when the flow may go from 2,500 to 15,000 cubic feet per second.