Kayak into the heart of one of the last pristine estuaries on the California coast. The day is spent paddling amongst the eelgrass and oyster beds, exploring the coastline in search of bat rays, leopard shark, harbor seals, and water fowl including white pelicans.
The 4 hour tour will explore Home Bay and the oyster beds traveling along the shoreline roving in the main bay. Typically we see the same wildlife on both tours, but we paddle approximately 5 miles vs. approximately 10 miles on the 6 hour tour. The 6 hour tour usually makes it to the mouth of the estero, where we stop on the sand spit to stretch our legs and enjoy a delicious picnic snack of fresh baked bread, local cheeses, and fresh fruit. After enjoying our snack there may be time for a walk amongst the dunes, on the beach, or up the hillside to enjoy the view. This tidally influenced waterway will certainly delight as we paddle amongst the open rolling hills and wildlife.
Drakes Estero is closed to paddlers annually for Harbor Seal pupping season March 1 thur June 30.
Time: Varies. See below.
Launch Site: Drakes Bay Oyster Co.
July: See the excitement of the Leopard Shark and Bat Ray Breeding and Spawning and young harbor seal pups exploring the shallow waters.
Sat. July 5th: 2p-6pm
Wed. July 9th: 9:30a-1:30pm
Sat. July 12th: 10:30a-2:30pm
Sun. August 3rd: 1p-5pm
Sat. August 23rd: 10a-2pm
Sat. August 30th: 10:30a-4:30p (6hr)
Sat. September 6th: 9:30a-1:30p
Sun. September 21st: 9:30a-1:30p
*Bring lunch for 6hr tour or snack for 4hr tour and plenty of water
Surrounded by golden hillsides, we will glide through the water as pelicans float overhead and come to rest. As we align with the rhythm of nature that surrounds us, we will paddle carefully amongst the wildlife that call the estero home, quietly waiting for the tip of a bat ray fin to rise gently above the water as it travels to its muddy feeding grounds.
History: Like its ebbing and flowing tides, this is a constantly changing environment. Our guides will help you connect to the past, present, and future with stories of the Miwok Indians who once called this drowned river valley their home, tales of Sir Francis Drake, his ship, and supposed discovery of the Bay, as well as the rich history of the first European explorers who settled and ranched in this rich agricultural countryside.
Today & Aquaculture: From our launch site at Drakes Bay Oyster Company you will observe the operations of a local oyster farm. Oysters play an integral role in maintaining the health of the estero by filtering the water, keeping algae levels in check, and absorbing bacteria in their environment. The oyster farms help to keep this relationship alive and the bay thriving. As we paddle you will be able to peer into other aspects of aquaculture and oyster farming.
Preparing for Your Trip