your paddlesports destination

Lake Santeetlah in North Carolina

Trip Overview

This was my first kayaking trip in my very first kayak. I was so pumped to be going on this trip. I was anxious but nervous at the same time. I wasn't sure what to expect or how I would do.

I arrived at this lake on Friday morning. I was meeting some more people from my area for this kayaking trip.

We paddled out approx 3.5 miles to a campsite on an island. Since there were so many of us we used three campsites. After everyone got setup we went on a 7 mile paddle around the lake. The lake is surrounded by mountains. The lake was at summer pool level which made it nice. The colors were beautiful. It was a nice leisurely paddle around the lake. That night we all gathered at the island and had a kabob dinner. Everyone had brought meat and veggies to make kabobs. We had so much food we could have fed another 10 people. We sat around the fire telling jokes and stories, basically having a great time.

The next day we paddled back to the boat ramp to meet some more people who were coming in. All of us went to greet them.

It was quite a site to see twenty-two kayaks in the water paddling back to the area we camped. When we arrived the others found some spots to pitch their tents.

We all went on another afternoon paddle. Most of the group stayed together but we made sure that at least three people were paddling together for safety. This trip was about seven miles and we explored more areas of the lake.

This night for dinner we did it pioneer-style. Everyone brought their own meals wrapped in aluminum foil. We piled the food on and kept turning it to make sure it was cooked.

During this most people lost site of where their dinner was. When we thought all the meals were cooked, we spread out some foil on the table and emptied the food on it.

It was another feast with lots of food left over. What a great feeling to sit around with everyone telling kayaking, backpacking and wild stories around a fire. As the night closed we all knew the weekend was coming to an end.

The next morning we ate breakfast and decided to go on one last paddle around the lake. The rain had stopped, the sun was shining, and the leaves were glowing. What a nice way to end the morning. After the paddle we headed back to tear down our campsites.

We had 3.5 miles to paddle back to the boat dock. Others had left before us as they had to get home.

The last mile of the paddle a headwind kicked up as if it wanted us to stay a little longer.

I thoroughly enjoyed my first kayak/camping trip. I met some great people and can't wait to do this again.


Camping at campsites on the lake.


My kayak was a Perception Carolina 14.5.



  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: Flat/Sheltered Water
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip