Skip to content

Where to Kayak in and around Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh PA

At the juncture of three rivers, the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania offers plenty of opportunities for kayaking. Calm flat waters, great fishing spots, an abundance of wildlife and unique urban experiences are always near, no matter where you venture. You don’t even have to leave downtown, but you might be glad you did.

Kayaking Destinations near Pittsburgh, PA

Here’s a quick guide to some of the best places to kayak in and around Pittsburgh.

The Three Rivers

The Ohio River, Allegheny River and Monongahela River meet right in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh at Point State Park. You’ll find the Ohio River to the west, Allegheny to the east, and the Mon to the south. Any (or all) can be kayaked, each offering something a bit different. The Allegheny on the North Shore is probably the most popular, though you’ll find plenty of public boat launches along all of them. You can paddle past Heinz Field, PNC Park, and the Carnegie Science Center, while taking in the stunning views of the Pittsburgh skyline or dock for dinner at one of the many waterfront restaurants.

Youghiogheny Water Trail

Connellsville to McKeesport, PA

The Youghiogheny River, also known as the Yough for short, is a 134-mile-long river that runs through West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. The 46-mile Youghiogheny Water Trail winds past Connellsville, West Newton, Sutersville, Buena Vista and Dead Man’s Hollow Conservation Area before meeting with the Monongahela River south of Pittsburgh. Class IV rapids can be found in the southern and middle sections of the river, but the trail is mostly flat offering a smooth paddle.

Lake Arthur, Moraine State Park

Portersville, PA

40 minutes north of Pittsburgh, near Portersville, PA you’ll find Moranine State Park and Lake Arthur. The lake is 3,200 acres and features lots of coves and inlets that make for great kayaking. Surrounded by the state park, it’s a fantastic place for bird watching, wildlife spotting and fishing.  Motorized boats are allowed on the lake, so stick close to shore for a peaceful paddle.

North Park Lake

Allison Park, PA

Just north of Pittsburgh, is North Park, a beautiful 3,000 acre park with a 65 acre lake. It’s only 20 minutes from downtown, between Wexford, Gibsonia, McCandless and Hampton Township. It offers a great paddle for all ages and skill levels to paddle with several different launch sites. It’s also a great destination for a family kayaking adventure, as the park offers playgrounds, hiking trails, historic buildings, a nature center and lots of picnic areas.

Pittsburgh Kayak Storage Racks

With so many kayaking destinations right in the Pittsburgh area, make sure you kayak is at the ready with proper kayak storage. Our exquisitely crafted kayak, canoe and SUP storage racks are made from durable, naturally weather-resistant 100% norther cedar logs. They’ll keep your shoreline neat and orderly, and your kayaks protected and at the ready. Our standard kayak racks can store up a combination of up to eight kayaks, canoes and standup paddleboards. Shop our kayak racks online now and enjoy free shipping to the Pittsburgh, PA area or contact us online for a custom kayak storage solution to meet your exact boat storage needs.