GASP! Gulf Area Sea Paddlers
Sea Kayaking the Bays Around Corpus Christi
By Ken Johnson
Corpus Christi has fantastic kayaking. Warm weather year around, and
great diversity on Gulf, Corpus Christi Bay, Laguna Madre (between Padre
Island and the mainland), rivers through wildlife refuges, and even
lakes. Here 16 easy day-trips. If anyone is interested in kayaking
Corpus Christi, I would be glad to show you around and get you started.
Send me email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Laguna Madre with calm shallow water area, protected from east/west
winds. Launch from Padre Island side of SPID bridge to Padre Island
(firm sand and clear water launch) and paddle around bird nesting areas,
shrimp boats, small marina, waterfront homes along Padre Island on the
Laguna side. Or paddle south on the Intra-coastal Waterway (which will
have sailboats, powerboats, and possibly a tug and barge), across the
Laguna Madre to explore the King Ranch, and then stop at Snoopie's or
Frenchies for waterfront drinks/dinner before taking out kayaks at SPID
bridge. 6 to 20 miles depending upon course.
- Emerald Cove and City Bayfront with shallow water launch on sandy
beach in front of Holiday Inn on Emerald Cove. Protected from
north/south winds. Paddle north past city bayfront and yacht basin,
past Bayfront Plaza, by the Bay Bridge, past the Aquarium, around
Lexington Aircraft Carrier, northeast along Corpus Christi beach by
beachfront condominiums to Portland Bridge, and back across the bay
(good chance of dolphins). See city skyline and yacht harbor from the
water, bird nesting islands, and beachfront. Good chance of seeing
sailboats, powerboats, and ocean tankers/freighters in the channel to
Corpus Christi harbor. 10-20 miles depending on course.
- Cole Park to Corpus Christi University. Launch at Cole Park on sandy
beach protected from south/west winds. Paddle southeast along beautiful
homes along Shoreline Drive, past waterfront Condominiums, to University
and back. 12 to 30 miles depending upon course.
- Portland-Ingleside. Launch from Portland (15 miles from CC) on firm
sandy beach, protected from north/east winds. Paddle southeast by
Ingleside marina, around Ingleside Naval Shipyard, explore islands in
Redfish Bay, return by Gulf Oilrig Repair Yard. 15 miles paddle.
- Rockport-Fulton. Launch from Rocklport Marina (40 miles from CC) on
sandy beach protected from north/west winds. Paddle northeast by
Rockport marina and beaches, beautiful waterfront homes, into Fulton
Shrimp Boat harbor, and have lunch at restaurant on the bay. 12 mile
- Aransas River. Launch from Bayside-Woodsboro road (40 miles from CC)
on calm riverwater protected from all winds. Paddle north or south for
good view of isolated refuge birds, alligators, deer, and wild pigs.
10-20 miles paddle.
- Shamrock Cove on Padre Island. Launch from Wilson Cut (30 miles from
CC) on muddy landing but calm protected waters, and paddle past remote
bird-nesting islands. Best birding area. 10 mile paddle.
- Aransas National Wildlife Refuge Whooping Crane Tour. Launch from
Live Oak Point at bridge across Copano Bay (45 miles from CC) and paddle
in Intracoastal Waterway between Matagorda Island and Aransas Wildlife
Refuge to Mustang Lake. 30 mile paddle. Only 12 mile paddle if only
paddle northeast to Goose Island, Blackjack Point, and Bird Point.
- Port O'Connor Matagorda Island State Park. Launch at Port O'Connor
(80 miles from CC) and paddle southwest past various bird-nesting
islands to Matagorda Island State Park (only reached by boat). 15 mile
paddle each way. Can camp overnight on Matagorda Island which is
deserted (only airstrip remains from when it was an Air Station).
- Copano Bay. Launch from Live Oak Point at bridge across Copano Bay
(45 miles from CC) in protected waters. Paddle north under bridge, past
Redfish Point, Newcomb Point, to Palmeto Point. Return via Goose Island
State Park. 12-mile paddle.
- Bird Island Basin. Launch at Bird Island Basin on Padre Island
National Seashore (33 miles from CC) and paddle 6 miles to Green Hill
sand dunes. Isolated area for birds, cayotes (and rattlers) with
beautiful isolated dunes and beach. Protected shallow water. 12 mile
paddle each way (can camp overnight).
- Seadrift Guadalupe Bay. Launch at Seadrift (65 miles from CC) and
paddle northwest in protected waters to see alligators and natural
wildlife. 10 mile paddle.
- Nueces river. Launch at Nueces State Park (20 miles north of CC) in
protected waters. Paddle north for quiet isolated bird watching in
heavily wooded areas on both sides of river.
- Lake Corpus Christi. Launch at Lakeside (40 miles northwest of CC).
10 mile paddle. Nice homes along lake, wooded.
- Gulf beaches on Padre Island. Can drive 8 miles on the beach and if
waves are under 4-feet, can surf the waves on the beach or paddle out in
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