Paddle and Portage

Sat June 18, 2022 Madison, WI 53703 US Directions

General Info

Welcome to the 2022 Paddle and Portage! Get ready for one of Madison's most popular and oldest events. 


Solo Canoe

Exactly what it sounds like –  a canoe, a person and a 1 bladed paddle. You will paddle and portage all by yourself. 

Team Canoe

This category is for social people who want the help of a teammate to paddle and portage. Each canoe must have 2 people.  

Stand-Up Paddleboard

This is the category for those with circus caliber balance. Participants  will use a board and a 1 bladed paddle to navigate the water. You will paddle and portage all by yourself. 

Solo Kayak 

1 person, 1 double bladed paddle and all the glory. You will paddle and portage by yourself. 

Team Kayak

2 people, 2 paddles and a plan to portage together. 

Portage Specific Rules
  • All participants must portage their own canoe, kayak or SUP.
  • Wheels and carts are only allowed in the non-timed, mass start division

Canoe Rental Information

Canoe rentals from WI River Outings include:
  • Wenonah Canoe Royalex Adirondack- 16’ long, 36” wide, 60 lbs, flat, stable bottom, comfortable nylon web seats
  • 2 Adult 3-Buckle Life Vests
  • 2 Paddles

Please note: if you need a vest for someone under 70 lbs, bring your own US Coast Guard approved vest.

Boats are designed to hold 2 participants only. No exceptions.

Canoes may be rented during the registration process. Paddlers with rentals will receive a coupon in their bib packet to redeem for their canoe the morning of the race. Canoes are first come, first served. To ensure availability, we recommend reserving your canoe prior to race day.

Additional rules and info:

  • Wisconsin Life Jacket Laws
  • Coast Guard approved life jackets must be worn by all competitors in the manner with which they were designed at all times the watercraft is in the water.
  • Paddle & Portage participants must obey safety and traffic directions of race officials and police throughout the race.
  • U.S. Canoe Association rules do not apply.
  • No more than 2 people per canoe allowed
  • Double-bladed paddles are allowed for kayakers only. (No exceptions)
  • Inappropriately discarding gear or trash along the course will be grounds for immediate disqualification.
  • All racers must complete the race within 1 hour 45 minutes to be counted in the official results.

Costume Contest

Paddlers are encouraged to dress up for the Paddle & Portage costume contest. Participants will receive recognition on social media and be eligible for other cool awards and gifts. Get your thinking caps on!


2 mile paddle in Lake Mendota followed by a .75 mile portage through Tenney Park to the Yahara River and then a 2 mile paddle to the finish line at Olbrich Park. (paddle routes may be changed if necessary due to weather)


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