Scottsdale Tour includes welcome time on water- kayaking the Salt River with Arizona Outback Adventure, with informative tour en route

On the way to the river your tour guide will regale you with lots of information about the ecology, economy and history of the area, especially focusing on the implact that rivers and water have had on the region's development

Arizona Outback Adventures Kayak Tour of Salt River

Something about the desert clime in Scottsdale makes a kayak outing on a local river sound very attractive. Follow your instincts—go!

Arizona Outback Adventures (AOA), said to be the largest outdoor adventure company in the area, hosts a four-hour round trip visit from Scottsdale to the Lower Salt River.

You spend two hours in the kayak, much of that in simple float time. Even a relative kayaking novice, like this writer, is able to handle it. In fact, the three or so rock-filled turbulent spots with hints of eddy are actually welcome breaks from the slow pace.

Birds swoop down to get fish or perch as birders' binocular lures on the banks and meanwhile the fish are jumping

Wildlife Sightings

Wildlife sightings are possible, and during out stint there was no shortage of herons and other wild birds that would likely make a birder’s heart jump. On the weekend though, the bigger sight is the parade of tubing locals. It’s quite the scene floating by, with lots of drinking before noon and a feeling of party, party, party that you are quasi-crashing as you paddle by.

In many ways, the forty-minute road trip with our guides, outdoorsmen Rob Chaudoin and Lindsay Essary, was as interesting as the kayak paddle. You first learn that Rob's family came to the area 130 years ago but still has a ranch in Texas, implying in a way that he is a tad outsider. He is then a font of information on the state’s biodiversity, rivers and water supply (of which Salt River where we went kayaking is one), the economy this terrain supports —from copper mining to farming of cotton, corn, pecans, lettuce, etc. using irrigation systems that date back to the Hohokam tribe.

Feeling the Season

Mothers Day proved to be a particularly beautiful one to take this kayak tour of the surrounding land. Lavendar and saguaros were in bloom. Fish were jumping, birds were flying by and the sun was high…


For more information, visit the Arizona Outback Adventures website.

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