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“Not a good activity in winter”

Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River
Ranked #2 of 6 things to do in Wimauma
Useful Information: Stairs / elevator, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Attraction details
Useful Information: Stairs / elevator, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
dunedin, florida, usa
Level Contributor
107 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Not a good activity in winter”
Reviewed December 20, 2013

Took a trip down the Little Manatee River today, Dec. 20, 2013. To say the trip was a disaster is an understatement. However, at the right time of year I bet it's great. The staff was very helpful and talked sense when explaining the trip down the river. We rented a canoe and was told the river is low at this time of the year (and no doubt lower later this winter). The attendant told us the last couple that went down told him there was only one place they had to get out and drag the canoe over a sand bar. At this point I can only think this couple weighed 3 pounds each as we found there were 8 or 9 places we had to get out in the first hour of a 2 1/2 hr. trip. We weigh 380 lbs. combined. At least two sandbars were quick sand and I would get out of the canoe to push us across the bar and find the sand was firm for 5 or 6 seconds then I would sink down to my knees in 1 second. If I had not had a hold of the canoe I would have been in real trouble. (Funny they never mentioned quick sand, wonder why?) The real problems happened with the sunken logs that the canoe would hang up on. Usually that was in deep water and we had much trouble getting off them. After about an hour of NOT trouble free cruising we were forced into a tree that over hang the river. In trying to push the branches up and pass under the tree the current took the canoe out from under us and over it went. Thank God the water was only about 2 feet deep and there was a couple of guys on the far bank that came to our rescue. All our gear went floating down the river (cellphone and camera included) and they helped us retrieve all of it and get the canoe upright.
Needless to say we joined another couple that had a similar experience at the 1 hour trip canoe landing and called the operator to come get all of us, 1 1/2 hr. early and less than half way though the trip.
I would strongly suggest you DO NOT try this activity in the winter months A/K/A "the dry season". From what the other couple told me mid summer, if we experienced a good rainy season, would not be good because of very fast running water down the river. So don't even think of a canoe trip down the Little Manatee River between November 1st and June 1st or in mid summer if heavy rains have been experienced in the area. Also, do NOT take electronic equipment with you on any such trip without having zip lock bags to store them in when not in use.
I would be glad to share pictures if I had a "working" camera.

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank warrenchubbs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brian R, Owner at Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River, responded to this review, December 29, 2013
How unfortunate that your river trip proved to be more of a challenge than you were expecting. Even with 40 years of paddling experience, I always paddle with one of our rental professional dry bags because I too may find myself getting wet from time to time. Some of the very things that make the Little Manatee a beautiful paddle, sugar sand bottom, narrowness and being a natural flowing stream with variable water levels, can also make it a bit more difficult for some folks. We applaud your sense of adventure that brought you to the river and hope you will continue to paddle Florida's many great rivers.
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73 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
66 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Family Friendly”
Reviewed November 26, 2013

I discovered this hidden gem while taking advantage of a Groupon deal. The 2 bedroom cabin was perfect for my children and it had plenty of room with everything you could possibly need included. The kids loved the drawing board. The river was beautiful as well. Water was a bit low, but it was an easy paddle with beautiful scenery and plenty of wildlife. The owner and staff were very hospitable. They always greeted us with a smile and went over and beyond to make sure we had everything we needed. A special thanks to Mike for all your help during our visit. I look forward to bringing my family back again soon.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank Tiff68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brian R, Owner at Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River, responded to this review, December 29, 2013
Thanks for visiting and staying in our new 2 BR cabin. I passed along your nice comments to Mike and I am glad he gave you the good service we seek to provide to all our customers.

Hope to see your family again soon.
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Carlisle, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“canoe trip with the kids”
Reviewed November 25, 2013

Great time, crew were helpful and knowledgable about river and areas along river. They were quick to pick us up. Where nice enough to move our reservations to another day on the river since water level was to high on scheduled visit.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank robert m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brian R, Owner at Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River, responded to this review, December 29, 2013
My staff and I are glad your family had a good time on the river. We hope to see you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, FL
Level Contributor
315 reviews
120 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“Not bad!”
Reviewed October 22, 2013

Calm waters, some areas very shallow, trash along the banks of the river. Some, very low vegetation, you really have to dive in, to prevent from hitting you on the face. Easy access to main location. not too crowded.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
Thank Alex F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brian R, Owner at Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thanks for taking the time to share your paddling experience. Different water levels yield different looks and we hope you will paddle with us again.
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Fla
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“They Knowingly Rented Me A Leaky Kayak”
Reviewed October 8, 2013

It may have been their idea of a joke, but those bastards rented me a leaky kayak! When I got to the state park canoe steps, I had to stop and see what was wrong. The kayak was full of water, and I had not swamped it. I went back out, and a ways down the river, I could not keep it upright. It dumped me into the river. I grabbed the kayak and my stuff and swam to some deadfall. It was tall enough that I could get back into the kayak. As soon as I got in, IT FLIPPED BECAUSE IT WAS FULL OF WATER AGAIN! I had to swim upriver while holding on to the kayak until I could make it to a place where it was shallow enough to stand. The bank was steep, and, fortunately, some folks in another kayak came by and helped me pull the water filled kayak up on the bank. They helped me flip it to get the water out (It was just too heavy to flip it myself). After that, it started filling up again, so I had to cut my trip short, and go to the pickup point. I told the guy driving the bus that the kayak had filled with water, but he did not care. When we got back to the base, I said to one of his employees "Hey, my kayak filled up with water!" "Yeah", he responded, "that one may be cracked." THEY KNOWINGLY RENTED ME A LEAKING KAYAK!!! LAWSUIT PENDING!!!

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank FrederickKann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brian R, Owner at Canoe Outpost - Little Manatee River, responded to this review, October 14, 2013
I was dismayed to read your review and find that we fell short in providing you a great experience on your visit. Please let me apologize to you for not meeting your expectations or mine. My staff and I care greatly about our customers and we have reviewed and discussed the events of your visit, our response and our systems to help ensure that every customer gets the great products and services they deserve from our company. We hope you will give us an opportunity to redeem ourselves and be our guest for another trip on the river.
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