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Kayaking Through COVID

I’m a wanderer. I’ve never been happy staying in one place. I love living here, I love my home, but I also need, on a very basic level, to get “out there,” to see new and different things. The Stay At Home order has been tough. The thing that’s pulled me through is that my home area is so wonderful. But I still need to see different things. Kayaking has been a sanity saver.

As many times as I’ve seen a place from the land, looking at it from the water is a new experience. Floating down the Davis Canal on Oak Island, for instance, reveals a variety and abundance of wildlife that you just don’t always appreciate from the pedestrian walkways and roads that cross the waterway. Birds sing and drop into the water for a snack, frogs and turtles dot the shoreline, fish bubble up in schools or even fling themselves out of the water all around you. It’s a humbling and calming experience.

Even during various levels of admonitions to “stay at home,” we’ve been encouraged to get outdoors. Taking to our waterways in a kayak or canoe is about as safe a socially distanced exercise activity as you’re likely to find. And the feeling of calm one can find just floating along is hard to beat.

Brunswick County is blessed with a huge variety of places to access our various waterways, and many offer infrastructure specifically to help get your paddle-craft into the water. Oak Island has kayak launches at Bill Smith Park on Fish Factory Road and at the end of SE 31st Street behind the Recreation Center. Leland has a kayak launch on a beautiful little creek at the Cypress Cove Recreation Park on Appleton Way off Village Road. And Brunswick County’s Brunswick Nature Park on Rt. 133 has a kayak launch on Town Creek. Of course there’s nothing stopping you from launching from any NC Wildlife Boat Ramp and if you aren’t afraid of getting your feet wet there are tons of other places from which to set off on your own adventure.

To find a great interative map of all the NC Wildlife boat ramps, visit

For a mapof all the trails, walking, biking and paddling, in Brunswick County, check out this site:

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