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Best Places to Paddleboard in the United States – Indiana 2021

Indiana SUP

1: Indiana Dunes State Park/Indiana Dunes National Park

Indiana Dunes SUP
If paddling at Lake Michigan is on your agenda, you will want to consider paddling at the Indiana Dunes State and National Park. The difference between these two parks comes down to who manages them, but no matter where you’re at, you’ll find some great paddling.

Get some fishing in and try your luck at catching Alewife, Bass, Shiners, and even Salmon. Bring a camera along, and you’ll be able to spot a variety of Hawks, Herons, and other majestic birds that occupy the area. Local vendors are more than happy to rent your gear and provide private lessons or catch you up on local history and tall tales, such as the mystery of Diana of the dunes.

The wind is relatively common, so if you want to try to ride some easy waves or get some wind foiling in, this is a great place to do it. With more than 200 official campsites to stay at, along with local hotel options, there’s plenty of places to stay as you take your time to paddle around the Indiana Dunes State and National Park.

Average Clear Weather Days per Year: 178
Distance to Major Cities: Direct Access to Chesterton, 45 Minutes to Chicago
Motor Vehicles Allowed: Yes
Paddleboard Rentals Available: Yes

2: Kankakee River National Water Trail

Kankakee River SUP
If exploring northwest Indiana is on your agenda, you may want to consider paddling on the Kankakee River National Water Trail. At 133 miles long, this is one of the best places for touring enthusiasts to paddle in the country due to the many environments you’ll experience. Flat farmlands, rolling hills, misty marshes, ancient bedrock, and warm, inviting sandy beaches are just a little bit of what you can expect as you pass through 13 different countries via SUP.

Suppose you prefer a challenge rather than a relaxing journey. In that case, you can also hit certain parts of the water trail to test yourself against class III rapids, beyond just the occasional flooded area for the truly adventurous. With multiple cities you can start from, paddlers of all kinds should consider the Kankakee River National Water Trail.

Average Clear Weather Days per Year: 172
Distance to Major Cities: Direct access to South Bend
Motor Vehicles Allowed: Limited
Paddleboard Rentals Available: Yes

3: Geist Marina

Geist Marina SUP
Most traveling to Indiana will visit Indianapolis, and for those who do, check out the Geist Marina for a fun day of paddleboarding. The Geist Marina is one of the most famous waterfronts for the whole state. So you can expect to get up close and personal to private boats, yachts, and ships that litter the marina.

Clubs, retailers, and vendors all around will offer lessons and support for all kinds of SUP activities, from guided yoga sessions and races to surfing and wind foiling. Anglers have a ton of fun here too and only need a little bit of luck to catch large Catfish, Bluegill, and Largemouth Bass.

As Indianapolis is the state’s capital and central hub, you’ll want to pay a visit to one of the top paddleboarding hubs by stopping by the Geist Marina.

Average Clear Weather Days per Year: 186
Distance to Major Cities: Direct access to Indianapolis
Motor Vehicles Allowed: Yes
Paddleboard Rentals Available: Yes

4: Eagle Creek Reservoir/State Park

Eagle Creek State Park SUP

The Geist Marina is a very popular paddleboarding location, but between SUPers and boaters, it can be a bit too busy for some paddlers looking for a more relaxing time. If you are in Indianapolis and prefer gentler waters, especially if you’re a beginner or traveling with younger paddlers, stop by the Eagle Creek Reservoir and State Park.

These two adjacent waterfronts are separated by a short, easy to cross bridge that you can paddle under if you go to the right place. There are over 1,400 acres of water to explore, filled with cool animals like Bald Eagles and Pelicans that soar over the water to the beautiful families of Deer that come right up to the shoreline.

The calm waters are especially suited for fishing, as the state has imposed heavy speed restrictions. As a result, you can easily spot fish like Large White Bass that skim the water’s surface. Eagle Creek State Park won’t offer as many clubs or rental options as Geist Marina, but it is still worth the visit if you’re in the Indianapolis area.

Average Clear Weather Days per Year: 186
Distance to Major Cities: Direct access to Indianapolis
Motor Vehicles Allowed: Limited
Paddleboard Rentals Available: Yes

5: Lake Monroe

Lake Monroe SUP
The largest lake located entirely in Indiana, Lake Monroe, is an excellent option if you wander over to Indiana’s southern half. There are over 10,000 acres of water to explore, ensuring that you have quiet places to go to if you want to practice yoga in tranquility as you gaze upon the fowl that inhabit the Middlefork Waterfowl Resting Area.

If you need a place to rent some gear yourself, the Fourwinds Resort and Marin typically hosts over 800 boats on any given day. Boating, racing, wind foiling, and other fun competitions are held throughout the year and is another top recommended spot for anglers. Located on the edge of Bloomington, Lake Monroe is a great destination spot if you find yourself wandering in south Indiana.

Average Clear Weather Days per Year: 184
Distance to Major Cities: 15 Minutes to Bloomington
Motor Vehicles Allowed: Yes
Paddleboard Rentals Available: Yes

Conclusion: Plan Your Paddle Board Trip and Have Fun!

Thank you for reading our list of top recommended paddleboarding locations for Indiana! While we’ve had the chance to visit a few of these locations, we rely on the recommendations and reviews of others for a couple of them. As such, if you’ve had the opportunity to visit any of our above-listed locations or have a favorite spot we left off the list, be sure to leave a comment or send us an email with your thoughts!

Beyond Indiana, we are developing our favorite spots in Iowa and other states and have also just released our top 15 destinations to paddleboard in the United States! You can also find our reviews of some of the latest popular paddleboards that have just hit the market, instructional guides that will help you become a better paddleboarder, and in-depth videos at our SUPBoardGuide.com Youtube channel.

Wear a PFD and stay safe, but remember to have fun as you paddleboard in Indiana!

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Heyo! At SupBoardGuide.com we are a team who love the water, the outdoors, and are more than grateful that our full-time job allows us to review stand up paddle boards. We paddle year round (it helps that we are just about 2 hours outside of Las Vegas), and we bring in a wide range of paddlers with the goal of providing our readers with the best, most in-depth, and accurate stand up paddle board reviews.

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