Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) is a great core workout for you and your pup and one of the fastest-growing outdoor sports in the world.
Here are some of the best spots around Seattle to get in on the action:
Green Lake. Calm waters, blue heron, turtles and fish jumping are just some of the things you’ll experience at Green Lake Park. Bring your own paddleboard or grab one of the dog-friendly rentals from Green Lake Boat Rentals (206.527.0171; greenlakeboatrentals.net).
Lake Union. For a little more adventure, grab your board and head to busy Lake Union to watch sea planes take off, check out some maritime history at the Center for Wooden Boats, and ogle some of the area’s best houseboats. If you need a rental, stop by the Northwest Outdoor Center (206.281.9694; nwoc.com).
Golden Gardens. For a chance to see seals and other marine life, head to Golden Gardens. You can watch the sunset behind the jagged peaks of the Olympic Mountains from your paddleboard or while barbecuing on the beach. Don’t have your own board? The folks at Ballard Kayak (206.494.3353; ballardkayak.com) will be happy to hook you and your pup up.
Some quick tips if you’re trying the sport for the first time:
- Put a life jacket on yourself and your pup. If you’re renting, one will be provided for you, but you will need to bring one for Bowser.
- Spend some time near the shore, getting your dog used to the board before you head out.
- Place a wet towel on the front of the board so your dog has better traction.
- For the best stability, keep your head up and eyes on the horizon.
- Consider taking a lesson if you are not comfortable trying new sports on your own.
Have fun and surf on with Fido, but be careful—one try and you might be hooked!
Brandie Ahlgren is founder and editor of CityDog Magazine. She, and her team of dog-loving editors, dig up the best places for you to sit, stay and play with your four-legged friends. Brandie, 12-year-old boxer Thya and Mexican foster failure Pancho, reside in West Seattle and can often be found hanging out at Westcrest Dog Park.