Stand Up Paddling Near Great Falls – Calm, Serene, Peaceful

Gosh, you can’t come up with enough adjectives to describe stand up paddling!

I was not doing the stand up thing, instead I was in a motorized boat getting photos and videos of our two happy volunteers, Chris and Beth from Bighorn Outdoor Specialists in Great Falls.

Our weather had been changing – typical spring weather where we have beautiful, calm mornings and afternoons. Then late afternoon we seem to get wind picking up and every now and then a thunderstorm.

I decided we should do stand up paddling early in the day in hopes of easy paddling for Chris and Beth. I soon discovered that they are pros and could stand up paddle in just about any weather!

The paddle boards look like large surf boards although they don’t attach to your ankle like a surf board.

Chris had them perched on top of his car and picked them up like they were weightless. Well, it looked easy to me!

My first observation told me that getting on the paddle board was probably the trickiest part. Chris and Beth easily stepped on to their boards and then calmly stroked the water, each with one paddle.

Although we were in a motorboat, our paddlers could cover a fair amount of water quickly too. They appeared to simply glide along the water, barely using any energy. OK, it looked like that anyway!

Both had life vests on (standard equipment) one paddle and the board, that’s it. You could certainly travel lightly if you planned to do stand up paddling.

Another thing Chris told me is that you can stand up paddle on a variety of water – river, lake etc.

We were on the Missouri River about 3 miles south of Great Falls, Montana and we were the only ones out and about at 8am.

Our boat driver from Missouri River Marine was careful to not make much of a wake for the stand up paddlers…until the end when he asked them if they’d like one. Chris took the challenge. I saw him bend his knees a bit in anticipation of the wave. He rode that wave like a true pro.

Neither of our stand up paddlers got wet, they looked so relaxed and each said it was a perfect way to start their morning.

I’m ready to try this!

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