Paddle Boards

Paddle Board Gatineau: 15 Amazing Spots to Enjoy Your Trip

Paddle Board Gatineau: 15 Amazing Spots to Enjoy Your Trip

It's a mistake if you've never gone to paddle board Gatineau. The region is becoming a popular paddle board destination due to its urban accessibility and scenic surroundings.

Its numerous rivers, such as the Ottawa River's Deschênes Rapids, provide a range of experiences for paddlers of various skill levels. There are peaceful lakes and picturesque hiking paths waiting for you to explore. Plus, the warm weather and sparkling sunshine will give you second-to-none memory with friends and family. Let's grab your board and get started right now!

1. Meech Lake

When talking about paddle board Gatineau, people usually mention Meech Lake as their favorite spot. It offers beautiful sunrises, sunsets, and calm water in the morning and at night. There's almost no boat, so you can feel free to practice your skill.

Meech Lake

Image source: Rawpixel

Meech Lake features two popular beaches: Blanchet Beach and O'Brien Beach. These are ideal spots for couples and young families to enjoy nature close to the city.

  • Types of water/winds: The water is generally calm, depending on weather and boat traffic. The wind is usually quiet in the morning and stronger in the afternoon.
  • Skill levels: Meech Lake has calm waters with few currents, making it a great place for novices. Meanwhile, intermediate and advanced paddlers can enjoy exploring the lake's bays and inlets and battling harsh, windy conditions.
  • Launch points: Along Blanchet Beach and O'Brien Beach
  • Amenities: Parking (free parking after 7 pm), restrooms and picnic areas
  • Unique features: If you want to capture Meech Lake's stunning vistas, go there in the autumn to witness the surrounding foliage change to a kaleidoscope of colors.

2. Philippe Lake

Another location paddle board Gatineau where you can enjoy stunning nature during sunrises and sunsets is Philippe Lake. It’s a long a narrow lake located in located in Gatineau Park in La Pêche. The place features small bays with an ideal calmness for paddle boarders to relax.

Philippe Lake

Image source: Pexels

It will take around 35 minutes to drive from downtown Gatineau to here. The parking fee is about $13 and half price after 5 pm. You'd better park in the far right corner as it provides easy access and a grassy area to inflate your inflatable SUP board.

  • Types of water/winds: The water is calm but sometimes choppy. There might be differences in the wind conditions throughout the day; mornings tend to be calmer, and afternoons are windier.
  • Skill levels: Philippe Lake offers both calm waters for beginners and challenges for intermediate and advanced paddle boarders.
  • Launch points: Breton Beach and Parent Beach
  • Amenities: Parking, washrooms, rental services, picnic, BBQ areas, wheelchair access ramp, and free shuttle to Breton Beach on weekends.
  • Unique features: Besides paddle boarding, visitors can enjoy various outdoor activities. Breton Beach is ideal for sandcastles and barbecues, while Parent Beach offers a playground and non-motorized boat launches.

3. La Pêche Lake

La Pêche Lake is the largest lake in Gatineau Park, with hundreds of bays and a broad area for exploration. It's suitable for paddle board enthusiasts. However, wind can occasionally be a problem, so be mindful when you enjoy the sport.

Since many people come here on the weekend, you'd better arrive earlier as the parking lot P20 can get crowded quickly. Paddle boards, kayaks, canoes, and rowboat rental services are available.

  • Types of water/winds: La Pêche Lake has a mixture of calm and rather tough water due to its size and depth. Paddlers must be prepared for the varying wind patterns as well.
  • Skill levels: La Pêche Lake features a beautiful, accommodating setting suitable for novices, intermediates, and experienced paddlers.
  • Launch points: La Pêche Beach
  • Amenities: Parking ($13 and half of the price after 5 pm), rental services, picnic facilities, washrooms, changrooms, and boat launch for non-motorized watercraft
  • Unique features: La Pêche Lake offers stunning views, wildlife encounters, and a tranquil atmosphere for paddlers. Surrounded by picturesque forests, it provides a peaceful retreat into nature, offering a unique experience for paddlers.

4. Leamy Lake Park

Leamy Lake Park is located in the center of Gatineau City (Ottawa and Gatineau River intersection). Its large oval-shaped lake provides ideal conditions for paddle boarding, kayaking, picnicking, and more.

It's not a bi-lake, but it's ideal for a paddle in the evening. From this lake, you can cross over onto the two rivers by traveling in the direction of the Gatineau River.

  • Types of water/winds: The water tends to be calmer near the shoreline and choppier in open water conditions. The wind can become stronger at the end of the day.
  • Skill levels: Leamy Lake Park welcomes paddle borders of all levels with suitable sections for each of them.
  • Launch points: Launch points are available along the shore.
  • Amenities: Parking (free at the Northwest parking lot and from $2-$10 at the East parking area), restrooms, picnic areas. If you don't have or want to bring your equipment, the city of Gatineau offers rental options near the Northwest parking area.
  • Unique features: The tranquil atmosphere of Leamy Lake Park in the evening is a great opportunity to paddle board and immerse yourself in quiet nature.

5. Wakefield – Gatineau River

Wakefield should be on your list if you're looking for a popular location paddle board Gatineau. It offers access to the Gatineau River suitable for paddle boarding.

Wakefield – Gatineau River

Image source: Flickr

You may paddle upstream toward the Wakefield Covered Bridge or downstream on the river. Besides, you can paddle a canoe or kayak along the shoreline to go around strong currents.

  • Types of water/winds: The water flow varies depending on rainfall and dam releases. The wind conditions are also different at various times of the day.
  • Skill levels: The Gatineau River near Wakefield is beginner-friendly. However, there are dynamic currents that should only be conquered by experts.
  • Launch points: Wakefield General Store offers the best launching spot.
  • Amenities: Free parking, restrooms, and washrooms
  • Unique features: The crystal-clear water, dense forests and rocky outcrops provide a unique picturesque backdrop for paddle boarders to enjoy.

6. Lac de la Ferm

Lac de la Ferm means "Lake of the Farm." The lake is oval-shaped and surrounded by beautiful Gatineau's rolling hills and mountains.

Since only non-motorized vehicles are accepted, the serene setting is ideal for paddle boarding and other recreational sports. As you paddle along, you may have a chance to observe various wildlife species, including birds, turtles, and even beavers.

  • Types of water/winds: Relatively stable water conditions and slightly stronger wind in the afternoon
  • Skill levels: It caters to all skill levels.
  • Launch points: Besides the parking spot
  • Amenities: Free parking, toilets, picnic areas
  • Unique features: Lac de la Ferm is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and photographers. Its picturesque panoramas and unspoiled nature provide amazing views and year-round shooting possibilities.

7. Cayamant Lake

Cayamant Lake is a worthy option when you want to paddle board Gatineau. It's long and straight and boasts beautiful forest landscapes suitable for relaxing water sports.

Cayamant Lake

Image source: Wikimedia commons

You can park right next to the lake, making it super convenient to start paddle boarding. However, motorized boats are allowed, so the water can sometimes be more active.

  • Types of water/winds: Water conditions vary depending on weather conditions and boat traffic. Meanwhile, wind can be stronger in more open spaces.
  • Skill levels: All skill levels
  • Launch points: The most popular access point to the lake is through a public beach at the southern end of Chemin Bellevue.
  • Amenities: Free parking, toilets

8. Picanoc River

Picanoc River is a distinctive location paddle board Gatineau for that flows through for a second-to-none experience. It meandering waterways flow through stunning natural landscapes of Quebec.

You can explore this amazing place by taking a 5km or 10km trip. It's a great chance to connect with nature and enjoy the tranquil ambiance.

  • Types of water/winds: Rainfall and seasonal fluctuations may affect water conditions, while the surrounding terrain and vegetation can create strong winds.
  • Skill levels: All skill levels
  • Launch points: Public launch points can be found along the river's banks.
  • Amenities: Parking, restroom facilities and picnic areas
  • Unique features: Paddling along the Picanoc River is more interesting, and you may encounter wildlife such as fish and birds.

9. Petite-Nation River

Petite-Nation River is located in Plaisance National Park. The popular route is paddling up the river from the Discovery Center to the Plaisance Waterfalls. This round-trip of 10 km will take 2-3 hours to complete.

Petite-Nation River

Image source: Wikimedia Commons

The Discovery Center in the National Park offers a free parking spot only 100m from the river access point. It also offers paddle board, kayaking, and canoe rental services. Besides, visitors can enjoy a picnic along the river bank and observe stunning nature.

  • Types of water/winds: General calm water
  • Skill levels: It caters to all paddle board levels.
  • Launch points: Plaisance National Park
  • Amenities: Parking, washrooms, rental services

10. Aylmer's Marina

Aylmer's Marina provides convenient access to both urban amenities and scenic surroundings. Water sports lovers can enjoy various recreational activities and admire the beautiful sunset views. Since it is on the Ottawa River, you can do many outdoor activities, including fishing, boating, and kayaking.

Aylmer's Marina

Image source: Flickr

Free parking is available at the corner of Xavier and Arthur-Croteau Street, which is a few hundred meters from the beach head. However, Aylmer's Marina is a gateway to the Ottawa River so that the water can be challenging for paddle boarders.

  • Types of water/winds: Water is a blend of gentle currents and occasional waves.
  • Skill levels: Intermediate and advanced enthusiasts may enjoy this place better.
  • Launch points: Various launch points are designed near parking areas.
  • Amenities: Free parking, washrooms and rental services

11. Parc du Lac-Beauchamp

Parc du Lac-Beauchamp is another appealing location for paddle board Gatineau for friends and family. The park is huge, with a size of 213 hectares (526 acres). It features various facilities for outdoor activities throughout the year.

With 15 km of trails and an on-site equipment rental service, it's the perfect spot for f amily activities such as paddle boarding, canoeing, swimming, hiking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing,  sliding, and skating. Visitors can come and have fun any time of the year.

  • Types of water/winds: Relatively calm water
  • Skill levels: Parc du Lac-Beauchamp is ideal for both amateurs and professionals.
  • Amenities: Parking, picnic tables, rental services

12. Gatineau Park

The beautiful Gatineau Park, only 15 minutes away from downtown Ottawa, is an ideal location for paddling. It boasts sandy beaches with easy access to the water for SUPs.

Gatineau Park

Image source: Rawpixel

Gatineau Park is around 360 square kilometers and offers hiking trails, lakes, and forests suitable for outdoor activities throughout the year.

  • Types of water/winds: Each lake features different types of water depending on sizes and location.
  • Skill levels: Suitable for beginner to advanced levels
  • Launch points: Launch points are available and well-marked along the lakes' sides.
  • Amenities: Parking, restrooms and picnic areas
  • Unique features: Gatineau Park is home to a variety of cultural and historical landmarks, including the Mackenzie King Estate and the Champlain Lookout, which enhance the paddling experience there.

13. Jacques-Cartier Park

It takes only half an hour to drive to Jacques-Cartier Park, a large, forested plateau including several valleys. The park, situated among a 550-meter-deep Jacques Cartier River channel, is the breathtaking location of the Vallée de la Jacques-Cartier glacial valley.

You may paddle along the Jacques Cartier River through a variety of rapids or enjoy breathtaking views of the valley while paddle boarding.

  • Types of water/winds: Gentle waters
  • Skill levels: All levels of paddle boarding ability
  • Amenities: Parking, restrooms and picnic areas
  • Unique features: Jacques-Cartier Park's various forest settings are second to none. The majority of high plateaus are forests, while deciduous trees dominate the deep valleys.

14. Parc de la Baie

If you're looking for a location paddle board Gatineau to unwind, try Parc de la Baie. It's located near the small Canadian village of Magog, offering an escape from a bustling city to nature.

Parc de la Baie

Image source: Pexels

With its lush greenery, charming walkways, and breathtaking river vistas, the park offers the perfect backdrop for outdoor pursuits such as paddle boarding.

  • Types of water/winds: Relatively calm water in some areas
  • Skill levels: Beginners to advanced
  • Amenities: Parking, restrooms and picnic areas
  • Unique features: In addition to paddle boarding, families and outdoor enthusiasts will find Parc de la Baie a great location because it provides a variety of recreational activities, such as hiking trails, bicycle pathways, and waterfront promenades.

15. Rapides-Farmer Park

Rapides-Farmer Park, situated in Gatineau, Quebec, is a charming riverbank park well-known for its scenic vistas and proximity to the well-known Deschênes Rapids. The park offers outdoor activities, relaxation, and waterfront enjoyment.

Rapides-Farmer Park is the perfect place for skilled paddle boarders looking for a distinctive and thrilling paddling experience.

  • Types of water/winds: Turbulent rapids can often be seen.
  • Skill levels: It best suits intermediate to advanced due to the rapid presence and potentially challenging water conditions.
  • Amenities: Parking, restrooms and picnic areas
  • Unique features: Experienced paddle boarders may find extra adrenaline when paddle boarding in Rapides-Farmer Park since its main attraction, Deschênes Rapids (a series of turbulent rapids), offers an exhilarating aquatic experience.

Paddle Board Rental at Gatineau

Renting a paddle board is a great way to explore the natural beauty of Gatineau. There is always a wide range of options, so you can choose the one suitable for your skills.

If you're seeking a good stand up paddle board for your adventure on the water, visit iROCKER. Our products are made from high-quality materials, guaranteeing durability and performance. Discover more on our website to prepare for the most memorable experience ever!

Let's Paddle Board in Gatineau with iROCKER.

If you love the waves and water, you should paddle board Gatineau at least once. Its pristine vistas and tranquil atmosphere will give you a rest.

Blue Adventures App of iROCKER is a great companion for finding the best paddling place. Plus, you can save and share your experiences with your friends for more unforgettable memories on the water. Download it right now!