Kayaking, Canoeing, Stand Up Paddleboarding and Aqua Bikes

Come paddle with us! Since 1999 and continuing today, Hackensack Riverkeeper remains the only operator of canoe/kayak liveries in our watershed. Now fielding a fleet of more than fifty canoes and kayaks, we look forward to giving you, your family & friends opportunities to enjoy and explore the river, the Meadowlands and Overpeck Lake at your own pace or on one of our Laurel Hill guided paddles.

Please note that our paddling activities are donation-based, as opposed to fee-based and all funds raised help support the ongoing mission of Hackensack Riverkeeper.

 

Enjoy independent or guided paddling at our three paddling center locations:

 

**PLEASE NOTE: For information regarding paddling center weather-related or emergency closures, please visit our Hackensack Riverkeeper Paddling Centers Facebook page. Weather conditions include, but are not limited to, heavy rain, lightening, excessive wind, excessive heat, unsafe water temperatures, etc. Occasionally we close the centers due to special paddling events at other locations.

Laurel Hill Paddling Center (CLOSED FOR THE SEASON…SEE YOU IN 2023! MOONLIGHT PADDLES STILL HAPPENING.)

Laurel Hill County Park
1005 New County Road
Secaucus, NJ 07094

Phone: 201-920-4746

Hours:  Saturdays, Sundays and Holiday Mondays, 9 AM – 7 PM (Last boats go out at 3 PM)

Our Paddling Center at Laurel Hill County Park is located at the end of New County Road in Secaucus, NJ. It is easily accessible from NJ Turnpike (Eastern Spur) Exit 15X, Route 3 to Meadowlands Parkway, or via NJ Transit buses and trains to Secaucus Junction. The park is located on the east bank of the Hackensack River at the southern end of the New Jersey Meadowlands directly across from the Saw Mill Creek Wildlife Management Area.

Download printable directions.

*The center’s season typically runs from the first weekend after Earth Day (April 22) until the last weekend before Halloween (October 31), The center will be OPEN (weather permitting) on Saturdays and Sundays, and on the following holidays: Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day. Please note that the center may be closed for special events during the season.

Here’s how to enjoy safe, independent paddling out of Laurel Hill:

  • We use the buddy system – SOLO PADDLING IS NOT PERMITTED
  • All boats must have one legal – and preferably experienced – adult aboard
  • All 2nd paddlers in canoes and tandem kayaks MUST be 16 years of age or older
  • Paddlers MUST wear their Personal Flotation Devices at all times while on the water – NO EXCEPTIONS!
  • Alcoholic beverages, cannabis and illegal drugs are NOT PERMITTED in our boats or in the park
  • Be sure to bring water, sunscreen, insect repellent and a charge cellphone
  • Consider also bringing a hat, sunglasses, binoculars, snacks and a waterproof bag

CANOE Donation RATES (per four hours):
$30 per paddler
$15 per passenger

  • You must have two paddlers per canoe.
  • Up to three adults, or two adults and 1-2 children (depending on size) is a safe, comfortable fit

KAYAK Donation RATES (per four hours):
$30 per paddler

  • No passengers
  • Single and tandem kayaks are available

Here’s how to enjoy Guided Paddles out of Laurel Hill:

Moonlight Paddles:

Moonlight Paddles are a great way to explore  Meadowlands under the light of the moon. Enjoy a two-hour paddle through the Sawmill Creek Wildlife Management Area with experienced guides. Solo paddlers welcome on guided tours.

See the full schedule of this year’s Moonlight Paddles.

Registration: $35 per paddler / $20 per paddler with own boat

  • Reservations are required for all Moonlight Paddles. Click on preferred date, listed below, to register.
  • Moonlight paddles are ADULTS ONLY (18+) events. EXPERIENCED PADDLERS ONLY, PLEASE.
  • For more information, please contact our office at 201-968-0808. For your convenience, directions and required waivers are available on the registration page. Be sure to print, read, sign and bring your waiver form.

 

2022 Moonlight Paddles (weather permitting) – Registration Open Now!

Mon 5/16 @ 8 PM – Full Moon
Tues, 5/17 @ 8 PM – Post-Full Moon

Mon, 6/13 @ 8 PM – Pre-Full Moon
Tues, 6/14 @ 8 PM – Full Moon

Wed, 7/13 @ 8 PM – Full Moon
Thur, 7/14 @ 8 PM – Post-Full Moon

Fri, 8/12 @ 7:30 PM – Full Moon
Sat, 8/13 @ 7:30 PM – Post-Full Moon

Sat, 9/10 @ 7 PM – Full Moon
Sun, 9/11 @ 7 PM – Post-Full Moon

Sat, 10/8 @ 6 PM – Pre-Full Moon
Sun, 10/9 @ 6 PM – Full Moon

Note:
ALL “Mooners” take place on easy-to-paddle Incoming tides.

Sunday Guided Tours 

High Tide Exploration Guided Paddle:

Hackensack Riverkeeper’s experienced paddling guides on a two-hour exploration of the Sawmill Creek marsh. Timed to the high tide, kayakers will be able to get into creeks and channels that are inaccessible – and often dry – during low tide.  An added bonus is the opportunity to view both the Newark skyline and the entire Manhattan skyline from the Upper West Side to Lower Manhattan from a unique perspective: with a thousand acres of protected wetlands in your foreground. EXPERIENCED ADULT (18+) PADDLERS ONLY.

Dates Available:

Sun, 5/29, 9-11 AM

Sun, 6/5, 12-2 PM
Sun, 6/12, 9-11 AM
Sun, 6/19, 12-2 PM
Sun, 6/26, 9-11 AM

Sun, 7/3, 12-2 PM
Sun, 7/17, 12-2 PM
Sun, 7/31, 9-11 AM
Sun, 7/31, 12-2 PM

Sun, 8/14, 9-11 AM
Sun, 8/14, 12-2 PM
Sun, 8/28, 9-11 AM

Sun, 9/4, 12-2 PM
Sun, 9/11, 9-11 AM
Sun, 9/11, 12-2 PM

 

 

Birding & Wildlife Watch Guided Paddle:

Join Hackensack Riverkeeper’s experienced paddling guides on a two-hour excursion to seek out some of the common (and not-so-common) wildlife species of the Meadowlands. Among the birds you can expect to see on this low-tide trip during fall migration are: herons, egrets, sandpipers, plovers, waterfowl, raptors and wrens. You’ll also have a good chance to spot muskrats in the creeks and Diamondback terrapins basking on the mudflats. Be sure to bring your binoculars and register early because this event is limited to just ten naturalist/paddlers. EXPERIENCED ADULT (18+) PADDLERS ONLY.

Dates Available:

Sun, 5/22, 9-11 AM
Sun, 5/22, 12-2 PM
Sun, 5/29, 12-2 PM

Sun, 6/5, 9-11 AM
Sun, 6/12, 12-2 PM
Sun, 6/19, 9-11 AM
Sun, 6/26, 12-2 PM

Sun, 7/3, 9-11 AM
Sun, 7/10, 9-11 AM
Sun, 7/10, 12-2 PM
Sun, 7/17, 9-11 AM
Sun, 7/24 12-2 PM

Sun, 8/7, 9-11 AM
Sun, 8/7, 12-2 PM
Sun, 8/21, 9-11 AM
Sun, 8/21, 12-2 PM
Sun, 8/28, 12-2 PM

Sun, 9/4, 9-11 AM
Sun, 9/18, 9-11 AM
Sun, 9/18, 12-2 PM

 

 

Overpeck Park Paddling Center (Now Saturday & Sunday Only – End of season staffing shortages may result in early closings.)

Overpeck County Park / Teaneck-Ridgefield Park Area
50 Fort Lee Road
Leonia, NJ 07605

Phone: 201-957-3085

Hours: Mon thru Fri, 10 AM-6 PM; Sat and Sun, 10 AM-6 PM / Open 7 days/week Father’s Day – Labor Day
(Last boats go out 2 hours prior to closing) 

CALL 201-968-0808 for the current schedule or check our Facebook page.

The calm, non-tidal waters of Overpeck Lake are perfect for novice paddlers and paddlers with children. Our Overpeck Park Kayak Center is most easily accessible via the park entrance at 50 Fort Lee Road, Leonia. Enter the park at the light and turn right at the traffic circle. After crossing over two wooden bridges, you will see the center and parking lot on your left. The park can also be accessed via NJ Transit buses.

Download printable directions

*The Kayak Center’s season typically runs from the first weekend after Earth Day (April 22) until the last weekend before Halloween (October 31). The center will be OPEN (weather permitting) on the standard dates/time of operation, and will also be OPEN on the following Monday holidays from 9AM to 6PM: Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

Here’s how to enjoy safe, independent paddling at Overpeck:

  • Reservations are required for groups of 8 or more. Boats are always subject to availability.
  • Paddlers MUST wear their Personal Flotation Devices at all times while on the water – NO EXCEPTIONS!
  • Alcoholic beverages, cannabis and illegal drugs are NOT PERMITTED in our boats or in the park
  • Be sure to bring water, sunscreen, insect repellent and a charged cellphone
  • Consider bringing a hat, sunglasses, binoculars, snacks and a waterproof bag

KAYAK and CANOE Donation RATES (per two hours)
$25 per paddler / $10 per paddler (overtime to each additional hour)

  • No kayak passengers
  • You must have two paddlers per canoe
  • 1-2 children (depending on size) can ride FREE as canoe passengers

STAND-UP PADDLEBOARD and AQUA BIKES Donation RATES (per two hours)
$25 per paddler

Private group paddling events can be arranged to take place at Overpeck. Contact the Site Manager at paddling@hackensackriverkeeper.org for info.

PLEASE NOTE the following safety requirements / restrictions for Overpeck:

  • Children 5 to 7 can ride as a passenger in a canoe with TWO adult paddlers.
  • Children 8-12 can paddle in a tandem kayak with one adult in the rear.
  • Children 13 & up can paddle a single kayak, but must be accompanied on the water by a parent or guardian over 18 at all times.
  • Anyone 16+ can paddle a Stand Up Paddle-board (SUP), accompanied on the water by an adult parent/guardian at all times.

 

Van Buskirk Island Paddling Center (NOW OPEN! LIMITED INVENTORY OF SINGLE KAYAKS AT THIS TIME.)

Van Buskirk Island County Park / Across from the historical Hackensack Water Works Bldg
Elm Street and New Milford Avenue
Oradell, NJ 07649

Phone: 551-341-0170

Hours:  Saturdays, Sundays and Holiday Mondays, 10 AM – 6 PM 
(Last boats go out 2 hours prior to closing) 

CALL 201-968-0808 for the current schedule or check our Facebook page.

Spend an enjoyable time paddling the calm forest-lined waters of the Hackensack River out from Bergen County’s newest park. This clear, freshwater stretch of river is located just downstream of Oradell Dam and above the Head of Tide. Like Overpeck, Van Buskirk Island Park is perfect for novice paddlers, families and the out-of-practice. The safety notes and rules are the same as those at Overpeck

Download printable directions

*The Kayak Center’s season typically runs from the first weekend after Earth Day (April 22) until the last weekend before Halloween (October 31). The center will be OPEN (weather permitting) on the standard dates/time of operation, and will also be OPEN on the following Monday holidays from 10 AM to 6 PM: Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

Here’s how to enjoy safe, independent paddling at Van Buskirk:

  • Reservations are required for groups of 8 or more. Boats are always subject to availability.
  • Paddlers MUST wear their Personal Flotation Devices at all times while on the water – NO EXCEPTIONS!
  • Alcoholic beverages, cannabis and illegal drugs are NOT PERMITTED in our boats or in the park
  • Be sure to bring water, sunscreen, insect repellent and a charged cellphone
  • Consider bringing a hat, sunglasses, binoculars, snacks and a waterproof bag

KAYAK and CANOE Donation RATES (per two hours)
$20 per paddler / $10 per paddler (overtime to each additional hour)

  • Adults 18+ only can arrange rentals
  • No kayak passengers
  • You must have two adult paddlers per canoe
  • 1-2 children (depending on size) can ride FREE as canoe passengers

PLEASE NOTE the following safety requirements / restrictions for Van Buskirk Island:

  • Children 5 to 7 can ride as a passenger in a canoe with TWO adult paddlers.
  • Children 8-12 can paddle in a tandem kayak with one adult in the rear.
  • Children 13 & up can paddle a single kayak, but must be accompanied on the water by a parent or guardian over 18 at all times.

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