Adventures James River


Being from Richmond, we take our Malibu Kayaks out on the James all the time, for short trips and all-day trips when we can. At Old Dominion Kayaks, we decided in early summer 2009 to travel the length of the James to see and fish the entire river and see how well the Malibu kayaks hold up under the diverse conditions presented by a mountains to bay trip. The following is a mini-documentary of our trips from the headwaters in Iron Gate, VA to where the James meets the Chesapeake Bay at Fort Monroe, 340 miles later.

Ancarrows' Landing to Deep Bottom
Ancarrows' Landing to Deep Bottom

We've paddled several different sections of the river before, but this was the first section we did after deciding to paddle the entire river. Initially we had planned on making this an overnight and trying to get to Hopewell at...

Columbia to West View
Columbia to West View

We did this trip the day after we did Ancarrow's to Deep Bottom and we were exhausted from the day before. We chose this stretch to do on this day because the water west of Richmond was a little high...

Irongate to Springwood
Irongate to Springwood

We decided on the larger boats because we had a lot of gear to pack for the overnight trip. The kayaks swallowed all the gear in the pictures above with room for more. We had enough room that we didn't...

Scottsville to Bremo Bluff
Scottsville to Bremo Bluff

Scottsville to Hardware River WMA is supposed to be some of the best fishing on the James. We didn't pull in any whoppers, but we did do better than we have in other sections so far. Also, it was obvious...

Springwood to Snowden
Springwood to Snowden

To anyone taking out or launching at Springwood: You need to have some sort of kayak cart to carry your boat up or down at this landing. The parking lot is a ways above the river and the path to...

Reedy Creek to Ancarrows' Landing
Reedy Creek to Ancarrows' Landing

For this stretch of river, we went with the shortest boats we had, because we weren't concerned with storage or fishing, we just needed the best maneuverability. Leading up to Belle Isle and after the 14th street bridge are calm...

Bremo Bluff to Columbia
Bremo Bluff to Columbia

It was a warm-ish spring day, and we were anxious to get going on doing more sections of the James River. This was our first outing of 2010, so we picked a short stretch that didn't have much in the...

Deep Bottom to Jordans' Point
Deep Bottom to Jordans' Point

By now we don't have to stop and think about which boats we want to paddle anymore. We each are comfortable with our boats of choice, Stealth-12 for Brian, X-13 for Tom and X Factor for Jason. On this stretch,...

Bent Creek to Howardsville
Bent Creek to Howardsville

We already had this trip scheduled, so we decided to go ahead and go through with it, even though the river was a little bit high, and was definitely muddy. Looking at the lack of clarity in the water and...

Pony Pasture to Reedy Creek
Pony Pasture to Reedy Creek

This is a great stretch of river to do in just a few hours. Because of our proximity to Pony Pasture, we can pack up, drop off, run the trip and be home in a little over 3 hours. It...

Warren to Scottsville
Warren to Scottsville

We had originally intended to do Howardsville to Scottsville this day, but the day before the trip we discovered that the landowner who leases the rights to the Howardsville landing and the commonwealth had not come to terms and been...

Lynchburg to Bent Creek
Lynchburg to Bent Creek

This stretch of river was one that we signed up for as part of the James River Associations 3rd annual Runoff Rundown event. The event is a fundraiser meant to bring attention to the James River by having participants cover...

Jordans' Point to Lawrence Lewis Jr Park
Jordans' Point to Lawrence Lewis Jr Park

We were able to get one last trip in for the year on this windy October day. Brian and Tom paddled straight across the river right away to take advantage of the wind break offered by the trees on river...

Tylers' Beach to James River Bridge
Tylers' Beach to James River Bridge

At this point in the year, we had only been able to get Tom, Brian and Jason together for 2 trips and we weren't making too much progress on finishing up the James so we decided to make our last...