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LA River Expeditions, outdoor kayak adventure, Sepulveda Basin

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Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve (San Fernando Valley, near Encino)

Burbank Blvd. at Woodley Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 91436

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This summer is your chance to paddle the LA River and experience this one-of-a-kind Los Angeles kayaking experience.

These are the best kayak tours and deals on the LA River! It's totally one of those LA bucket list, must-do adventures. Have some cool summer fun when you paddle the Los Angeles River in this urban outdoors recreational adventure. Whether it's rafting/kayaking, kayaking tours, a virtual safari or expedition that you're after, this is totally what to do in LA. Great for Los Angeles residents and tourists alike.

Right now we're offering a special limited-time discount of 15% OFF. Just use promo code KAYAKLA2017 when you purchase your tickets during July (for any remaining dates this summer).

WHERE: These guided kayak tours are in the "Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve" section of the river, which is the most natural, wonderfully green part, within one of two official Recreational Zones. It is a leisurely, 2.5-mile flatwater paddle, with deeper water and few obstacles (as opposed to the sportier other river stretch we run near downtown LA). Here there are tree-lined riverbanks, and robust bird and fish populations. This segment of the Los Angeles River is within a large park in the San Fernando Valley, not far from neighborhoods like: Encino, Van Nuys, Sherman Oaks, Tarzana and Reseda.

WHAT: You'll paddle in your single kayak for approximately 2 1/4 hrs., with all basic equipment provided (boat, lifejacket, paddle, helmet), as you learn all about the LA River from our experienced boating staff: the watershed, the wildlife, the history and the politics of our hometown river. You'll pick up paddling skills and learn how to be safer around rivers. Plus, you'll have fun and get some great exercise along the way.

HOW: We run this trip as an "up & back" trip to avoid any hassles of portaging around hazards, getting stuck on rocks or waiting to get back to your vehicle. You'll park near the start (Burbank Blvd. @ Woodley Ave.), take a roughly 3-minute walk over a bridge to the river launch site, and then depart and return from the same riverside location.

WHO: LA River Expeditions is the original boating outfit on the LA River and the only one leading tours in both Recreation Zones. We are the group that, in 2008, paddled the 51 miles of the river to help win environmental protections for it under the Clean Water Act. Since then, as a California nonprofit, we've put 5,000+ people on the river in kayaks. We're proud of having contributed to our community's enjoyment and learning.

WHY: We do all this because we are avid kayakers and all-around river enthusiasts. We love rivers. Our experienced guides are the best — they've got decades of collective experience running rivers. They've received professional training in safety and paddling skills, and maintain First Aid/CPR certification. For its river conservation efforts, LA River Expeditions is the recipient of the Green Paddle Award (American Canoe Association), the River Warrior Award (Resource Renewal Institute) and the River Hero award (River Network). You'll be in good hands.

! NOTE that these trips are more leisurely and relaxed. This is essentially flatwater paddling, with a few slight currents and the possibility to play with a few rapids. There is often 90+ degree heat, so protecting yourself accordingly is important. There are boats to lift, but nothing too taxing. It's possible but not likely that you could flip your boat; you should dress as if you might get wet. These trips are okay for boaters of all skill levels; beginners are welcome. Do not sign up for this trip, however, if you have a medical condition that could be compromised by this activity, or if you're particularly sensitive to less-than-pristine water, or if you're over 230 lbs. (due to kayak stability and capacity limits — sorry.). Please be aware that there is a strict no-refund policy.

We hope to see you out on the LA River soon!! Look further below for important FAQs...


* What's the deal with this part of the river? This is the site of the original guided kayak trips, including the only parts of the river that have no concrete at all on the bottom or sides. This lush and peaceful section contains the river's best wildlife. This vibrant natural resource lends itself well to both kayaking and learning all about the river. You'll come away with a whole new perspective on the nature that's right here within urban Los Angeles, whether you're a resident or tourist.

* Is it hot out there? Yes. It can be very hot during the summer in this area. If you have particular issues with heat, or tenuous medical issues, this just might not be for you.

* Any age limits? This activity is usually doable for people 10 years and up (barring any extraordinary health or physical conditions).

* Any weight limits? Yes, no more than 210 lbs., please. The kayaks have weight capacity limits. Be sure that each person for whom you're buying a ticket meets this criteria. It's a stability/safety issue, so please respect that.

* How experienced do I have to be? The trip will require that you paddle your own kayak for about 2.5 miles. Beginners are welcome. Our staff will work with you on your paddling and boating skills.

* How's the water quality? The LA River, like most urban rivers, suffers from pollution. Incidental contact with the water (i.e., hand to mouth, ingesting it) is to be avoided; mainly, common sense should be used. Still, the river is deemed safe for this type of activity by authorities who do water monitoring. LA River Expeditions has not had any notable, reported health incidents due to river water. We have anti-bacterial sanitizers and fresh water to wash off with at the end of your tour.

* What about parking in the local neighborhoods? There's really only one place to park and it has plenty of room for vehicles. It's not far from the kayak launch site.

* What if my trip is canceled? The trips are sometimes canceled due to poor weather. If that happens, we will work with you to reschedule you for another tour as soon as possible.

* What's your cancellation policy? Sorry, but once you purchase your tickets there are no refunds. Being late or getting lost is on you. However, if you know ahead of time that you'll be unable to attend your tour for whatever reason, we recommend any of these options: 1) Tickets are 100% transferable, so you could sell them to another person 2) You may use our Facebook page to look for people who are interested in tickets, or post your tickets as available for sale (sometimes it helps to offer a discount) 3) You can always gift your ticket(s) to a friend, family member or work colleague so that someone can enjoy the experience.

* OK, so how do I get tickets? If you're excited to experience this novel adventure, then we'd love to have you aboard! Use this site to select a Date, then click on Tickets and follow the prompts for payment. If it says "Sold Out" then you simply look for the next available date.

* After I get my tickets, how do find out everything else I'll need to know? You'll be able to download our "Welcome Kit" immediately if you like, so you can be prepared. It contains info like what to bring, exactly where to meet and when, written directions and maps, and also a couple of waivers you'll need to sign and bring with you. Also, we mail out that same our Welcome Kit in an email roughly 6 days prior to your tour.

We hope to see you out on the LA River soon!!

Little Grand Canyon, Sepulveda Basin

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Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve (San Fernando Valley, near Encino)

Burbank Blvd. at Woodley Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 91436

View Map

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