Laurel Hill Paddling Center

Saturday & Sunday 9am to 6pm


Rental fees:
$25.00 per paddler per day

We use the buddy system- NO SOLO PADDLERS

Paddlers must be over 16 and be accompanied by an adult at all times

After an absence of more than fifty years, Hackensack Riverkeeper restored river-based recreation to the region in 1999. Now featuring a fleet of fifty-two canoes and kayaks, we look forward to giving you the opportunity to enjoy and explore the river and the Meadowlands through our rentals and guided tours.

Our Paddling Center at Laurel Hill County Park (which also serves as Hackensack Riverkeeper's field office) is located at the end of New County Road in Secaucus, NJ and is easily accessible from NJ Turnpike Exit 15-X (Eastern Spur) and the train station at Secaucus Junction. The park is situated directly on the river at the southern end of the New Jersey Meadowlands. Here's how to enjoy it:

Canoe/Kayak Rentals ~ Guided Paddles

Canoe Project

Canoe and Kayak Rentals
Beginning on Saturday, April 20th the Paddling Center will be open through the end of October, weather permitting. Paddling Center will not be open on Reservoir Challenge, Lake Tappan and SPLASH events.
Reservations are recommended, but not required, and are subject to availability.
Please call 201-920-4746 for rental reservations for Laurel Hill.
The Paddling Center will be OPEN on Memorial Day, Labor Day and July 4th.

CANOE RATES (per day):
$25 per paddler
$15 per passenger
You must have two paddlers per canoe. At least one (preferably experienced) paddler must be a legal adult. Teens 15 and older may substitute for the 2nd adult paddler. Up to three adults, or two adults with one or two children is a comfortable fit.

KAYAK RATES (per day):
$25 per paddler
No passengers.
You must have at least one (preferably experienced) legal adult paddler per kayak.Teens may paddle in a tandem kayak if the other paddler is an experienced legal adult. We have single and tandem kayaks.
NO solo paddling is permitted, so if you want to paddle a single kayak,bring a buddy for a second boat.

Each paddler will be provided with a whistle, paddle and laminated map in addition to a short paddling lesson and river orientation. Everybody weighing about 70 lbs and up will be issued and must wear a Personal Flotation Device. Smaller participants must have their own US Coast Guard-approved PFD.
Be sure to bring water, sunscreen and insect repellent.
Consider bringing a hat, sunglasses, binoculars, camera, field guide,snacks and anything else that will make your day more enjoyable.
If possible, carry your gear in a waterproof bag.


Guided Paddles
Guided Paddles are a great way to experience the Meadowlands. Enjoy a leisurely, two-hour paddle through the marshes of the Sawmill Creek Wildlife Management Area with an experienced guide. In addition to sightseeing and wildlife watching, you will learn a good bit about the natural and human history that has shaped the region. Generally, low tide trips are best for wildlife-watching and high tide trips are best for sightseeing.

COSTS: $30 per paddler / $15 per canoe passenger /
$15 per paddler with own boat

Reservations are required for all Guided Paddles
and must be secured with a credit card.
To make reservations or to get more information,
please contact our Program Director Hugh Carola at 201-968-0808. Upon reserving, your trip confirmation and directions
will be mailed to you.

2014 Guided Paddle Schedule


Sunday, May 4, 10 AM - Incoming tide
Saturday, May 10, 10 AM - Birding / Outgoing-low tide
Sunday, May 11, 11 AM - Birding / Outgoing-low tide
Saturday, May 17, 7 PM - Full Moon / Incoming tide
Saturday, May 24, 10 AM - Birding / Outgoing-low tide


Sunday, June 1, 10 AM - Roundtrip Picnic Paddle to River Barge Park
Saturday, June 7, *Reservoir Challenge - PADDLING CENTER CLOSED*
Friday, June 13, 7:30 PM - Full Moon / Incoming tide
Sunday, June 15, 10 AM - Incoming-high tide


Thursday, July 4, 9 AM - Incoming tide
Saturday, July 12, 7:30 PM - Full Moon / Incoming tide


Saturday, August 9, 7 PM - Full Moon / Incoming tide
Sunday, August 17, 10 AM - Incoming tide


Saturday, September 6, 6:30 PM - Full Moon / Incoming tide
Sunday, September 14, 9:30 AM - Birding / Incoming tide
Saturday, September 20, 10:30 AM - Birding / Outgoing-low tide
Sunday, September 21, 11:30 AM - Birding / Outgoing-low tide

BIRDERS NOTE: our guides are PADDLING guides who work to
ensure your safety; they are NOT birding guides who can keep up a running commentary.

* The Reservoir Challenge requires separate registration,
and takes place on the Oradell Reservoir in Haworth

** The Overpeck Father's Day Regatta takes place at
Overpeck County Park and is organized by the Overpeck Preserve.
Please call 201-446-2652 for reservations.

*** Lake Tappan Paddle Day requires separate registration.

Crossed-out dates indicate the trip is full or the date is past

Please note: ALL paddling is subject to weather and water conditions.
Any decision to close the livery or cancel a group tour will be made by our paddling center staff.

Sorry, our canoes and kayaks are not appropriate for fishing or hunting at Laurel Hill County Park.


Have your own canoe or kayak?
Want to paddle other sections of the river?

The Public Trust Doctrine holds that all waterways belong to all the people of a society, whether it be for recreation, navigation or sustenance. It is therefore your right to take your own canoe or kayak out on the river and it's tributaries whenever you like, PROVIDED you access the water from public property (or private property with permission). The exceptions to this rule are the reservoirs of the Hackensack River watershed: Lake DeForest, Lake Tappan, Woodcliff Lake and the Oradell Reservoir. There are many public parks along the river where you can launch, as illustrated in this MAP created by Tom Hart, local photographer and Hackensack Riverkeeper volunteer. This document also provides descriptions of many public access points. Please just be aware of the tides, and plan your paddling accordingly - many locations north of Hackensack are inaccessible for several hours around low tide due to mud flats.


For information and reservations, contact
Hugh Carola: 201-968-0808 or

For printed directions, return to the Eco-program page.

Tide Chart for the River

See you on the river!