Just saw my first yellow kayaks of the spring in the Allegheny. That's a sight that comes about five weeks later than usual.
Kayak Pittsburgh, a project of Venture Outdoors that rents the craft from beneath the Clemente Bridge (North Side bank), had been set to open April 28. But the freakishly rainy spring delayed that event: For those who haven't heard, 'round here, big rains wash raw sewage into the waterways instead of into ALCOSAN's treatment plant. That makes things in the water unpleasant and even slightly risky, especially for those with compromised immune systems.
But with several days of clear weather behind us, let the paddling commence.
Kayak Pittsburgh is open Monday-Friday 11 a.m.-dusk, and 10 a.m.-dusk on the weekends. Solo kayaks rent for $15 for the first hour and $8 for additional half-hours, while tandems are $20/10. Discounts are available for Venture Outdoors members. No reservations are necessary, and you're free to roam all three rivers.
You can also rent bikes at the location (right next to PNC Park) thanks to Golden Triangle Bike Rental.
Flat-water kayaking is pretty easy (about as strenuous as riding a bike). But for those who want to start slower, Kayak Pittsburgh has another post nearby on Lake Elizabeth, in Allegheny Commons park. That opens at 4 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, and at 10 a.m. on the weekends.
Kayak-rental season lasts through October.