Answers to frequently-asked questions…
Q: What should I bring?
A: Sunglasses, sunscreen, shorts or pants you don’t mind getting wet, a weather-appropriate shirt, shoes you don’t mind getting wet, hat, and water bottle. Cameras and camera phones are recommended only for experienced kayakers, and their usage is at your own risk. Long telephoto-lens cameras are NOT recommended as they can impede your paddle stroke.
Q: What should I expect?
A: We are venturing into natural conditions, subject to change and the whims of Mother Nature. Weather may change. Expect to expend moderate physical effort paddling, at least. You may get lightly splashed from paddling and/or small waves on the river, depending on tides and wind. Tour routes subject to change due to tide and paddler conditions.
Q: Do I need previous paddling experience?
A: No experience, no problem! First-timers welcome. Every tour starts with an introductory kayaking lesson. We can adjust our tour route, distance and itinerary to suit any experience level. You can also check our Tour Calendar for Best Beginner Days, when tides allow us to take advantage of the easiest tour route, closest to the boat launch. We also offer Best Experienced Days with a longer, more challenging course for more experienced paddlers. All kayakers must wear an approved life vest (life vest rental included in tour price).
Q: What if rain is in the forecast?
A: We’ll contact you no later than 8 a.m. the morning of your trip with any weather cancellation. Please wait until 8 a.m. the morning of your tour so we have a confident forecast on which to decide. Weather continues to grow more variable and forecast percentage chances of bad weather fluctuate hourly accordingly. In case the afternoon forecast looks better than a rainy morning, we hope you’ll consider shifting your tour time to the afternoon. We’ll always work with you on re-scheduling your trip as necessary. We appreciate your patience and any flexibility to help us deal with the vagaries of Mother Nature and get you out enjoying a beautiful day on the water.
Q: What kind of kayaks do you provide?
A: We have the right kayak for you! The Meadowlands Kayak Tours fleet of vessels chosen for their suitability for local river and marsh conditions offers:
–four full-size 1-person kayaks, Jake, Ellwood, Blade & LT (aka El T)
–one smaller 1-person kayak, Ellie (for paddlers <200 lbs.)
–one 2-person kayak, Persephone (great for couples, friends, parent+child)
–one 3-person kayak, Big Blue (great for families)
Q: What’s the minimum age required to join a kayak tour?
A: Children 6 and up may ride as a passenger in our 3-person kayak with two adult paddlers, or can paddle in the front seat of our tandem kayak with an adult in the back. Children 13 and older may paddle a single kayak (smaller model available).
Q: What’s the best way to get there from NYC?
A: We highly recommend the 190 bus from 42nd St. Port Authority Bus Terminal. Take the bus from Port Authority, Gate 232, directly to Rutherford Train Station and we’ll pick you up there. The bus costs around $10 r/t and takes 25 minutes. Schedule info here: http://www.njtransit.com/pdf/bus/T1122.pdf and real-time bus schedule info here. The bus leaving Port Authority at 9:30 or 10 Saturday morning is your best bet, depending on the exact tour start time we arrange. The train is another fine option, but you have to change trains at Secaucus Junction. The train is also available from Newark and Hoboken as well as from NY Penn Station.
Q: Why is pick-up and drop-off only available for 3 or fewer people?
A: The 3-person maximum to/from the kayak launch point is via my truck, Red. Red can only accommodate three other people in addition to the driver. If you can manage your own transportation to/from the boat launch, we can accommodate up to 7 people per tour.
Q: Can you provide any third-party reviews of the Meadowlands to bolster your claims about the place?
A: Sure–The New York Times wrote a review of one of Hackensack Riverkeeper’s excellent pontoon boat eco-tours of the Meadowlands back in 2005: https://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/16/nyregion/tourists-seeking-wild-beauty-in-new-jersey-seriously-they-find-it.html.
Q: Where can I find more information on enjoying and supporting the Meadowlands?
A: Check out our Meadowlands Resources page for links to Hackensack Riverkeeper, Bergen County Audubon Society, and more!
CONTACT US for more info and reservations!