There are a lot of opportunities for paddling a canoe, kayak or stand up paddleboard (SUP) in the Fort Collins area. My first recommendation for an easy recreational paddling would one of Fort Collins Nature Areas. Several old gravel mining operation along the Poudre River were transformed into nature areas with numerous small lakes and ponds. My favorite are Arapaho Bend and Riverbend Ponds areaa.
The above picture was shot during my morning paddling workout on Beaver Pond – the largest lake in Arapaho Bend Natural Area. One lap around this ponds is approximately 1 mile if you follow the shoreline closely. The easiest access is from Strauss Cabin road between Harmony and Horsetooth. Since water level in these ponds does not change very much there is a lot of natural coastal vegetation and wildlife.by