Kayaking the LA River

I few weeks back I was scouring the Internet for fun things to do with the kids; instead, I came across something fun to do with my hubby. We kayaked the LA River!

This year, The Autry is doing a series of lectures and workshops on various Los Angeles areas/infrastructures, followed by "field trips" that go hand in hand with the lectures. Kayaking the LA River on a water-bound tour of the Sepulveda Basin Recreation Area (near the damn and Lake Balboa), led by river guides from Los Angeles Conservation Corps, was one of those "field trips". Unfortunately, we did not get to hear the actual lecture, but we did get to enjoy the, so easily overlooked beauty of the LA River.

Yes, the very river that was nothing more than a polluted wash just a few years ago! As a matter of fact, studies have shown that the newly revitalized LA River has elevated levels of E. coli, enterococcus, and is polluted with fecal matter. You read that right, fecal matter!

Luckily, bacteria levels at the Sepulveda Basin, near the last remaining natural-bottom section of the LA River, were relatively low this month and there was little danger to us kayakers. Still, I must say, I was absolutely paranoid about getting any water in my mouth and eyes, as it splashed up from my oar. But that did not take away from a fun adventure with my hubs.

We were advised to park at Woodley Park and make the walk to the Sepulveda Basin. Fortunately, hubby had the good sense to drive around first. That walk, in 90 degree heat, would have taken us a solid hour. So, we found street parking that was much closer to our launch site. There were plenty of spots available on Woodley at Burbank Blvd. Once we parked, we followed the signs to our lovely launch site.