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Paddle Boarding in North Dakota: Exploring the Peaceful Waters

Are you looking for a unique outdoor experience? Paddle boarding is an exciting activity that is growing in popularity in North Dakota. With its many pristine lakes and rivers, North Dakota is the perfect destination for paddle boarding enthusiasts. In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about paddle boarding in North Dakota, including the best places to paddle board, what to bring, and tips for beginners.

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Benefits of Paddle Boarding in North Dakota

Paddle boarding is an excellent way to explore North Dakota’s beautiful waters. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced paddle boarder, there are many benefits to this activity. Here are just a few:

Low Impact Exercise

Paddle boarding is a low impact exercise that can help improve your overall fitness. It’s an excellent way to work your core, arms, and legs, while also enjoying the beautiful scenery.


Paddle boarding can be a relaxing and peaceful activity, allowing you to escape from the stresses of daily life. With the serene waters of North Dakota, you can enjoy the tranquility of nature while getting a great workout.


Paddle boarding is an adventure sport that offers a unique way to explore North Dakota’s many waterways. Whether you’re looking to paddle board on a calm lake or a rushing river, there’s an adventure waiting for you.

Best Places to Paddle Board in North Dakota

North Dakota offers a variety of places to paddle board, from quiet lakes to fast-moving rivers. Here are some of the best spots:

Lake Sakakawea

Lake Sakakawea is North Dakota’s largest lake and offers plenty of space for paddle boarders. With over 200 miles of shoreline, there are plenty of places to explore. The lake is also home to several marinas and campgrounds, making it easy to plan a day trip or a weekend getaway.

Missouri River

The Missouri River is another popular spot for paddle boarding in North Dakota. The river offers stunning views of the surrounding hills and is a great place to paddle board on a hot summer day. There are several access points along the river, making it easy to find a spot to launch your board.

Devil’s Lake

Devil’s Lake is a beautiful natural lake located in the heart of North Dakota. With crystal clear waters and a beautiful surrounding landscape, Devil’s Lake is a great place for paddle boarding. The lake is also home to several campgrounds and parks, making it easy to plan a weekend trip.

What to Bring

Before heading out on your paddle boarding adventure, there are a few things you’ll want to bring along:

Paddle Board

Of course, the most important thing you’ll need is a paddle board. There are several different types of boards available, so it’s important to choose one that’s right for you.

Personal Flotation Device (PFD)

A PFD is an essential safety item for paddle boarders. Make sure you choose one that fits properly and is comfortable to wear.

Sun Protection

North Dakota can get quite hot in the summer, so it’s important to protect your skin from the sun. Bring along sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to keep yourself protected.

Water and Snacks

Paddle boarding can be a workout, so make sure to bring along plenty of water and snacks to keep you fueled and hydrated.

Tips for Beginners

If you’re new to paddle boarding, don’t worry! Here are some tips to help you get started:

Start on Calm Waters

It’s best to start paddle boarding on calm waters, such as a lake or slow-moving river. This will allow you to get comfortable with your board and build your confidence.

Get the Right Gear

Make sure you have all the necessary gear, including a properly sized board, paddle, PFD, and leash. You’ll also want to wear appropriate clothing and shoes that can get wet.

Learn Proper Technique

Paddle boarding is all about balance and technique. Make sure you learn the proper stance and paddle strokes to ensure an enjoyable and safe experience.

Stay Aware of Your Surroundings

Always be aware of your surroundings, including other boats, swimmers, and wildlife. Make sure to follow all safety rules and regulations for the area you’re paddling in.


Paddle boarding in North Dakota is a unique and exciting way to explore the state’s many beautiful waterways. With its low-impact exercise, stress-relieving benefits, and sense of adventure, paddle boarding is the perfect activity for all skill levels. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, North Dakota has plenty of places to paddle board and enjoy the great outdoors.


  1. Is paddle boarding safe in North Dakota?

Yes, paddle boarding can be a safe activity as long as you follow all safety rules and regulations and wear proper safety gear.

  1. Do I need to have prior experience to paddle board in North Dakota?

No, there are many places in North Dakota that are suitable for beginners, and many rental shops offer lessons and equipment for those new to the sport.

  1. Can I paddle board in North Dakota in the winter?

While it is possible to paddle board in the winter, it’s important to make sure you have the proper gear and experience to handle the colder water and weather conditions.

  1. Do I need a permit to paddle board in North Dakota?

It depends on the area you’re planning to paddle board in. Check with local authorities to see if any permits are required.

  1. Can I bring my dog on my paddle board?

Yes, many paddle boarders enjoy bringing their furry friends along for the ride. Make sure your dog is comfortable around water and wears a PFD.

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About the author: Julian Kidd
I have been an avid stand up paddle boarder since 2009. I retired from a decade of professional kiteboarding to focus on SUP. Green Water Sports grew from this love of all things SUP. As well as being a keen paddle boarder, I'm a football fan, closet petrol head, web tinkerer, husband and father.