Paddling and biking faqs

see below for power sports faqs

What should I wear while kayaking, paddle boarding, or biking? 

Its a good idea to layer your clothing so that you can remove or add layers to stay comfortable- It can be cool in the morning but heat up quickly as you begin your activity. Be prepared for the possibility you could get wet while doing any water related activity! People sensitive to sun exposure should apply sunscreen with an appropriate SPF or wear active-wear long sleeved shirts and pants. We highly suggest hats and sunglasses to help with the glare from the sun. For water activities-wear shoes you don't mind getting wet or go barefoot! Biking requires snug fitting, closed toe shoes.

IS there an age limit for kayaking?

Children under 18 must be supervised by an adult but are permitted to be in their own vessel. The age at which a child can properly and safely handle a kayak or SUP by themselves varies with the physical limitations unique to each child, therefore it is up to the parent to decide. We are always available to give you our best recommendation. If in doubt, it is better to go in a tandem together as your child’s first kayaking experience should be remembered as fun and exciting, not an exhausting struggle.

are there insects?

While doing any outdoor activities, it is possible you could be exposed to biting or stinging insects such as mosquitoes. However, we do not typically encounter any biting flies or mosquitoes while paddling on the water or biking a trail! Thats just our experience. If your allergic to stings or bites, check with your physician concerning your needs and let us know ahead of time so we can be prepared to handle such situations.

What should I bring?

We suggest you bring bottle water or electrolyte drink such as gatorade- its better to have enough and not need it then need more and not have it! We supply one bottled water for each guided tour participant and also have bottle water available for sale for $1.25 per bottle. Your welcomed to bring a snack but it should be easy to pack like a granola bar, fruit or trail mix. There is enough room in your kayak to pack a small bag for items like snacks, binoculars and a camera which we recommend! Backpacks are suggested for bikes-there are no baskets or compartments for handbags. *We supply all safety equipment such as lifejackets, paddles, bike helmets and maps.

What if I’ve never kayaked or paddle boarded before?

Thats okay! You have chosen a great place to start. Our skilled staff is trained to make sure your comfortable with operating your vessel before you depart. Our kayaks are very stable touring kayaks with a very spacious cockpit so you won't feel stuck in your boat. First timers will especially benefit from a guided tour where we can assist you with your technique along the way. There are no strong currents or tides to worry about and the average water depth is 3’-5’! Feel free to call us if you have any more questions or concerns!

What is the difference between a Rental and a Tour?

With a rental, we'll give you paddling tips, a map and make sure you get you acclimated. We’ll help you launch your vessel and once you are in the water, you're on your own to explore! Tours are led by one or more of our skilled guides who will work hard to create an unforgettable experience! We'll share our knowledge of the creeks and rivers with you, together with the history of the area all while searching for an abundance of birds and wildlife our County is known for. Each tour is tailored to your group to make sure your safe, comfortable, and having fun!

What about bad weather?

Due to the very unpredictable nature of weather forecasts, we usually don’t cancel a tour or rental until the morning of the activity. We will give you as much notice as possible and will only cancel for thunderstorms (lightning), high winds, downpours, or any other conditions we deem unsafe. We do not cancel tours for light rain. A full refund will be given for weather cancellations.
*This refund policy does not apply to rental equipment delivered to your location.

How Much Should I tip my Guide?

The industry standard is 15-20% but feel free to tip more or less based on your experience.

Can I bring my dog?

We are pet friendly, however it is important to note that space in a kayak is limited and larger dogs can provide stability issues when on the water. If your planning on doing a guided tour we do ask that you leave your pup at home unless other arrangements are made ahead of time.

CANCELLATION POLICY

Any bookings that have to be cancelled will be credited for a future activity unless other arrangements are made with management. This rain check is redeemable all season long and is transferable to others. If a customer does not contact us to cancel within 2 hours of the rental or activity, they have forfeited the booking and no credit will be issued. We (Blackwater Adventures) will be the sole judge of cancellations due to weather. We will only cancel for thunderstorms (lightning), high winds, downpours, or any other conditions we deem unsafe. We do not cancel activities for light rain. If we cancel an activity, a full refund or credit will be given. *This refund policy does not apply to rental equipment delivered to your location. For Shuttles, and other Event Services- see the cancellation policy included in your contract.

powersports faqs

see above for paddle & pedAL faqs

How old do you need to be to operate a boat or jetski?

You must be at least 18 years old to rent and/or operate any of our motorized equipment, including boats and jet skis. A government issued photo i.d must be presented for verification. 

Do you need a boating license?

All persons born after June 1972 operating a motor boat must have a DNR safe boaters license. We can issue you a temporary license free of charge, which is good for up to 10 days. 

Are you required to wear a lifejacket (PFD) ?

Anyone under the age of 13, in a boat less than 21 feet in length are required to wear a PFD. Although adults are not required to wear a PFD, each boat is equipped with at least one PFD for every person on board. ALL occupants of personal watercraft (jet skis, sea-doos etc.) must wear a PFD at all times.

Are there operational boundaries?

Boats must stay in the main channel of the waters of the Choptank River. Entrance into creeks or coves is not permitted. You may not dock anywhere except the port at which you departed without prior permission from a manager. Beaching the boats or jet skis is not permitted. Jet Ski operation is subjected to boundaries that will be described during the rental orientation. For more information about Jet Ski boundaries please contact us.

Does the occupancy limit for each vessel include children?

Yes, Coast Guard occupancy limits for each vessel include infants and children.

Can you tube, wakeboard, or water ski behind a boat?

Yes, you may pull towables behind a boat only. Jet Skis are not permitted to tow. Towable devices are available for rent at an additional cost.

Is fuel included in a rental?

Yes, fuel is included in the price. 

Am I responsible for damages?

Yes, the renter is financially responsible for any damages done to the boat during the rental period. Although this is not common, occasional damages do occur-most often propeller damage. In the case of damages, your security deposit will be forfeited until an estimate for repairs is established. If the repair cost is less than the total amount of the security deposit a refund of the difference will be issued. 

Can I fish from the boats?

We allow fishing from one vessel- our Triumph 190. There will be no exceptions as all of other boats are equipped as pleasure boats only.  

Am I subject to a cleaning fee?

Yes, If the boat comes back with the interior unreasonably dirty or soiled with mud or food and beverage you will be subject to a $50 cleaning fee. Blackwater Adventures Staff will be the sole judge of the definition of this rule and enforcement of the fee. 

CANCELLATION POLICY

Any bookings that have to be cancelled will be credited for a future activity unless other arrangements are made with management. This rain check is redeemable all season long and is transferable to others. If a customer does not contact us to cancel within 2 hours of the rental or activity, they have forfeited the booking and no credit will be issued. We (Blackwater Adventures) will be the sole judge of cancellations due to weather. We will only cancel for thunderstorms (lightning), high winds, downpours, or any other conditions we deem unsafe. We do not cancel activities for light rain. If we cancel an activity, a full refund or credit will be given. *This refund policy does not apply to rental equipment delivered to your location. For Shuttles, and other Event Services- see the cancellation policy included in your contract.