Kayak Spots in Franklin County VA

Kayak Spots in Franklin County VALooking for the best kayak spots in Franklin County VA? You’ve come to the right place. Franklin County, located in the picturesque state of Virginia, offers an abundance of breathtaking locations for kayaking enthusiasts. From serene lakes to scenic rivers, this region has it all. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced kayaker, Franklin County has something to offer for everyone.

Discover the hidden gems of Franklin County as we explore the top kayak spots in the area. With calm and quiet waters, stunning natural landscapes, and convenient rental options, you’ll have everything you need for a memorable kayaking experience. So grab your paddle and get ready to embark on an adventure like no other in Franklin County VA!

Smith Mountain Lake

Smith Mountain Lake is a popular destination in Franklin County, Virginia, offering a wide range of recreational activities including kayaking. With its vast coastline and calm waters, it is perfect for paddling at a leisurely pace and exploring the hidden alcoves of the lake.

Smith Mountain Lake Community Park and Smith Mountain Lake State Park Beach are popular spots for kayaking and offer gently sloping beaches for easy access to the water. Bridgewater Marina and Mitchell’s Point Marina are the go-to places for kayak rentals, making it convenient for visitors to enjoy a day out on the lake.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced kayaker, Smith Mountain Lake provides a picturesque setting to immerse yourself in nature and enjoy the tranquility of the water. With its stunning views and serene atmosphere, it is no wonder why Smith Mountain Lake is a sought-after destination for kayaking enthusiasts in Virginia.

Philpott Lake

Philpott Lake, located in Southwest Virginia, is a hidden gem for kayaking enthusiasts. Nestled amidst the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains, this serene lake offers a picturesque setting and a tranquil environment for outdoor recreation. With almost 20,000 acres of wilderness surrounding the lake, paddlers can immerse themselves in the beauty of nature while enjoying a peaceful kayaking experience.

One of the highlights of kayaking at Philpott Lake is the opportunity to explore hidden nooks and crannies, as well as discover stunning waterfalls along the shoreline. Several parks and access points provide convenient entry into the lake for paddlers. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced kayaker, there are routes suitable for all skill levels, allowing everyone to enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the surroundings.

To enhance the kayaking experience, the newly built Philpott Marina serves as a basecamp for boating adventures. It offers a range of amenities such as boat slips, fuel, and a store, ensuring that visitors have everything they need for a comfortable and enjoyable outing on the water. Whether you’re planning a day trip or a longer expedition, Philpott Lake is a must-visit destination for kayaking enthusiasts seeking a peaceful and scenic retreat.

Kayaking Routes at Philpott Lake

When exploring Philpott Lake, kayakers have a variety of routes to choose from, each offering its own unique natural beauty and opportunities for adventure. Here are some popular kayaking routes at Philpott Lake:

  • The Jamison Mill Tour: This route takes you along the southern shoreline of Philpott Lake, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains and a chance to explore historical sites such as the Jamison Mill.
  • The Waterfall Excursion: Paddle to the western side of the lake to discover hidden waterfalls cascading down the rocky cliffs. This route is perfect for nature lovers and photographers looking for unique vantage points.
  • The Blackberry Beach Adventure: Head to Blackberry Beach on the eastern side of the lake and enjoy a leisurely paddle along the calm waters, surrounded by lush forests and sandy beaches.

With its natural beauty, peaceful ambiance, and diverse kayaking routes, Philpott Lake is a true paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you’re seeking a tranquil escape or an exciting exploration, this Southwest Virginia gem offers the perfect setting for an unforgettable kayaking adventure.

Roanoke Region Rivers

The Roanoke region in Virginia is a kayaker’s paradise, offering several scenic rivers that cater to different skill levels and preferences. Whether you’re seeking calm and leisurely paddling or exhilarating rapids, the Roanoke region has it all. Here are some of the top rivers in the area that are perfect for kayaking:

Upper James River Water Trail

The Upper James River Water Trail is a 74-mile stretch that winds through the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains. This picturesque trail provides a serene and peaceful kayaking experience, with calm waters that are perfect for beginners and families. Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to spot diverse wildlife and enjoy the tranquility of nature. Fishing enthusiasts will also appreciate the abundance of fish species found in the river.

New River Water Trail

If you’re seeking a more adventurous kayaking experience, the New River Water Trail in Giles County is the perfect choice. This trail offers a mix of Class I to Class III rapids, providing an exciting and thrilling ride for experienced paddlers. The stunning natural surroundings and diverse flora and fauna add to the allure of this scenic river. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the beautiful landscapes and cascading rapids!

Jackson River

The Jackson River, located in the Alleghany Highlands, offers excellent kayaking opportunities in a serene and peaceful setting. This river is known for its clear and calm waters, making it ideal for kayakers of all skill levels. The Alleghany Highlands Blueway provides access points and launch sites along the river, allowing paddlers to explore different sections and discover hidden gems along the way. Fishing enthusiasts will also appreciate the abundance of trout in the river.

Roanoke River Blueway

The Roanoke River Blueway is a unique paddling experience that combines urban and country landscapes. This 45-mile water trail showcases the beauty of the Roanoke River, offering stunning views, wildlife sightings, and a mix of calm and swift currents. Paddlers can choose from various sections of the Blueway, each with its own unique charm. The trail is well-marked and easily accessible, making it a popular choice for both locals and visitors.

With its diverse array of rivers, the Roanoke region in Virginia is a haven for kayaking enthusiasts. Whether you prefer gentle paddling on calm waters or thrilling adventures through rapids, there’s a river in this region that will satisfy your kayaking cravings. So grab your kayak, explore the scenic waterways, and immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the Roanoke region.

Lakes in Franklin County

Franklin County, located in Virginia, is a region blessed with several stunning lakes that offer fantastic opportunities for kayaking enthusiasts. These lakes provide a serene and picturesque environment for paddlers to explore and immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the area. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced kayaker, Franklin County’s lakes have something to offer for everyone.

Carvins Cove

One of the notable lakes in Franklin County is Carvins Cove, a protected conservation area spanning 630 acres. Surrounded by lush forests and majestic mountains, this reservoir provides a calm and tranquil setting for kayaking adventures. Paddlers can navigate through the calm waters while taking in the breathtaking landscapes that surround them. Carvins Cove is a haven for nature enthusiasts, offering a chance to spot wildlife and immerse oneself in the peaceful ambiance of the outdoors.

Philpott Lake

Another remarkable lake in Franklin County is Philpott Lake, located at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Stretching across nearly 3,000 acres with 100 miles of shoreline, Philpott Lake is a true gem for kayakers. Its deep waters and scenic surroundings make it an ideal spot for paddling and exploring. Kayakers can venture along the lake’s shoreline, discovering hidden coves, tranquil inlets, and stunning vistas. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing paddle or an adventure-filled exploration, Philpott Lake offers it all.

Lake Moomaw

Nestled within the George Washington National Forest, Lake Moomaw is another enchanting lake in Franklin County. Known for its deep waters and picturesque landscapes, Lake Moomaw provides a captivating backdrop for kayaking adventures. Paddlers can glide through the crystal-clear waters and enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding forests and mountains. With its untouched beauty and tranquil atmosphere, Lake Moomaw is a perfect destination for nature lovers and kayaking enthusiasts alike.

Lake Location Size Features
Carvins Cove Franklin County 630 acres Surrounded by forests and mountains, wildlife spotting
Philpott Lake Franklin County Approximately 3,000 acres 100 miles of shoreline, deep waters, scenic surroundings
Lake Moomaw Franklin County N/A Deep waters, picturesque landscapes, George Washington National Forest


Franklin County, VA is a hidden gem for kayaking enthusiasts. With its diverse range of kayak spots, including Smith Mountain Lake, Philpott Lake, rivers in the Roanoke region, and lakes like Carvins Cove, Philpott Lake, and Lake Moomaw, this scenic region offers endless possibilities for outdoor adventure.

Whether you’re a beginner looking for calm and serene waters or an experienced paddler seeking exciting rapids, Franklin County has something for everyone. The breathtaking scenery, tranquil waters, and abundant wildlife make kayaking in this area a truly immersive experience.

So, gather your gear, hop in your kayak, and embark on a journey to explore the picturesque landscapes and stunning views that Franklin County, VA has to offer. Whether you’re paddling through the calm waters of a lake or navigating the exhilarating rapids of a river, you’re sure to create unforgettable memories in this beautiful region.

Richard Dodds

Leave a Comment