on March 18, 2007
One of the best and uncrowded ways to see Monterey Bay is on a kayak. At sea level, I love enjoying the close view of sea otters, birds, sea lions, and other marine life. My favorite memories of kayaking? Watching the sea otter pups playing and sleeping with their mothers. What a view!The first time I went ocean kayaking, I was intimidated. But Monterey Bay Kayaks (www.montereybaykayaks.com) gave a thorough on-land lesson. They provided the wet suits and life jackets with their kayak rentals. We found that unlike their competitors, they rent out their kayaks, per day, not by the hour. They also have parking in front of their building, a definite plus. A little less intimidated after the lesson, my husband and I headed out in our open-deck double kayak. We easily moved pass the surf and out into the bay. Immediately I realized that the sea was calm and serene! Soon, we saw sea lions and sea otters wrapped in kelp. Before we knew it, we were kayaking for 2.5 hours. We have kayaked in Monterey Bay many times since.If you want a little bit of adventure, mixed in with relaxation and an amazing view, this is definitely worth the try. But here are some hints:Go between mid-spring to early-fall, when the weather is nice and the water is not as choppy. Bring a bathing suit or swim trunks. If you bring any electronics, such as cell phones, be sure to put them in water resistant containers.As a warning, your cameras may get wet!Yield to the boats that share the Bay with you.Keep at least 50 feet away from the marine animals. It is against the law to be any closer; coast guards are always on the lookout!If you have to rent, use Monterey Bay Kayaks (www.montereybaykayaks.com). I have no incentives for plugging them, but they are really the best deal and most convenient kayak rental store in Monterey. It is great to be able to park at the rental facility, which is also where you start kayaking. Other companies are not on-site of where you start kayaking. Monterey Bay Kayaks have a changing area and free hot chocolate right after you come back from your trip!Don't let any of the hints scare you from trying ocean kayaking in Monterey Bay. It is relaxing, adventurous, and fun all mixed into one activity!
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