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Hello everbody. I just bought a kayak, nothing to fancy it's a Pelican persuit, 11'6" sit-in.
I might have jumped the gun on buying one, but it seemed like a good deal, so I jumped on it.

I've been conoeing, but kayaks are new to me, so we'll see how it goes. I just love being out on the water.

I live in Benicia, right by the bay and wondering if there's any locals near by.

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whats up dude, I live in belmont/west bay and usually paddle in the local sloughs, coastal creeks and up on the russian river. There's not really that many "great" places to kayak around here, unless you have an ocean kayak and want to paddle to angel island, treasure island and all that, which would be awesome. I would have done it but my 'yak is a "rec boat" and doesnt have float bags, a skirt, or any of that, which i am going to get. if you find a good spot to paddle at let me know, im down to paddle on the weekends usually.
Sweet, weekend are perfect for me. I might take it out for a test run this weekend, if I can wait that long. I thought I might try it right here in Benicia, sort of near the Carquinez bridge. Not sure if the bay is the best place for a test run, but I don't plan on going to far out anyhow. I don't have a skirt yet either.

I go out to the american river now and agian, but haven't been to the russian. Is it a bit calmer?

I'll let you know if I find any good spots.
I highly suggest taking a class. Learn how to paddle efficiently, and how to get back into a swamped boat. It's not something you want to figure out in an emergency!

Have fun. NorCal is an amazing place to live as a paddler! I miss being up there.
Absolutely. I think REI does some classes, I need to check it out.
Well I took my kayak out for the first time today. Went well, even though the water was a bit choppy. The kayak is stable but doesn't track very well. I'll have to had rudder or keel sometime down the road.
Kevin,
I highly suggest you call Current Adventures in Lotus and see if you take their RK2 class without needing to take RK1 since you have experience. They'll supply a river running kayak and you will love the experience of kayaking whitewater. Let me know if you do what you thought about it. I learned from them and that's where I go to kayak - South Fork of the American River - it's a "great" place - better than anywhere else local, Chili Bar and the Gorge would be the next step up. Cache Creek is also a possibility. Much more exciting than the sloughs!
Christa
You should look into taking classes with Current Adventures, they have an awesome program with superb instructors. I took classes with them for the last few years, with NO regrets. And for somone like me, its nice to find reasonable pricing :) Give them a call, or check out the website! currentadventures.com
Thanks for all the advice everyone. I'll probably take a class of I decide to do any white water, but for now I'll only be doing fairly calm waters anyhow. I got to a lot of practice in lake Jenkinson a couple weeks ago. Practiced rolling and getting back in. This kayak is actually really hard to roll.

I could still use dome practice with proper paddling, still wanting to use my arms instead of my back.

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