Can You SUP on Lake Dillon, and The Best Places to SUP from

Can you paddle board on Lake Dillon, CO? This is a very popular question. Other people also ask whether you can go kayaking on the lake.

From June through September, you can enjoy boating adventures on the Dillon Water Reservoir in Denver. It is a popular lake with boaters, kayakers, and paddlers.

The scenery on and around Lake Dillon is super awesome, and the best way to see it in all of its glory is from the water, by boat, kayak or canoe.

Even better, imagine how much more you will soak in when you are standing on your paddle board. This is the big advantage because you can see further out than a person sitting down.

Therefore, when you get to Dillon, the question is not whether you can paddle. It is what to choose between a kayak or a paddle board.     

When you are looking for the best lakes to paddle board near me in the USA, you are likely to find Lake Dillon listed. The scenic beauty of Colorado is irresistible.

Best time of the year to SUP on Lake Dillon

Can you paddle board on Lake Dillon

This is definitely summer because the water remains cold throughout the year, so you can guess just how colder it is during fall and winter. In fact, it is for this reason that swimming on the lake is not allowed.

If you are wondering about the best time of the day to go paddling on the lake, well, I would say 9.00AM is a good bet. During this time, the water is calm, there are no storms and the traffic is less.

Ask your provider whether they have early bird paddle board tours, so that you can depart at 8.00AM. Mostly, you will be allowed to rent a paddle board and other gear for about 2.5 hours.

The good thing is that the paddle boarding area is carefully selected, so there is less traffic. However, the weather in Dillon can change with little to no notice, especially in the afternoons. Therefore, most paddle boarding shops only allow you to go out in the most appropriate hours, in the morning.

At the same time, you will be outfitted with life jacket for paddle boarding, for adults, children as well as your dog. You can go paddle boarding with your dog on Lake Dillon.

Even if this is your first time to stand up paddle board, you will be given a quick lesson after renting one. You will be surprised at how fast you can learn how to SUP and have fun.

The best place to paddle board from on Lake Dillon

There are many places from where to launch a paddle board on Lake Dillon. These are carefully chosen places, where the water is calm.

Here are the best of them all:

Snake River Inlet SUP and kayak launch – If you are looking for a place that is isolated, try the Snake River Inlet, which does not get much kayak and SUP traffic. It is recommended that you go early because by 11.00AM, the wind starts to blow in the westerly direction.

Dillon Dam Rd SUP and Kayak launch – The easy access to the Giberson Bay makes the SUP and kayak launch site from the Dillon Dam road popular with many water sports enthusiasts. Parking is limited, so again, arrive early enough so that you can get a spot.

Frisco Bay Marina SUP and Kayak Launch – Like the launch spot of the Dillon Dam Road, this one is also super busy with boat traffic. Therefore, you are advised to arrive early. The good thing is that you can ride your paddle board northward to access Giberson Bay, or turn it eastward to ride along the Frisco Recreation Peninsula.

Other spots from where you can launch a board on Lake Dillon include Dillon Marina SUP and Kayak Launch, and Blue River Inlet SUP and Kayak Launch.

Best way to enjoy SUP on Lake Dillon

To have fun on your solid or inflatable paddle board, preparation is very important. This involves knowing the conditions of the water, so that you can know whether to wear a wetsuit, or not. In this case, when going for SUP on Lake Dillon, do the following:

Dress warmly

Even in summer, the water can feel a bit too cold for many people. Since you might fall into the water from the board, dress in a wetsuit. In fact, a wetsuit is required for windsurfers, to try and keep the water as clean as possible.

On average, the highest temperature of the water on Lake Dillon is around 78 degrees Fahrenheit/28 degrees Celsius. This is the surface temperature in summer, so a few feet down and the water will feel cold.

Wear water shoes too, since it is impossible to avoid contact with the water. The good thing is that you can rent all of this gear at any of the rental shops along the lake, including Type III life jackets.

Show up early

The best time to go paddle boarding on this lake is 8.00AM or 9.00AM. During this time, there will not be much boat or kayak traffic in the water, so you can be able to paddle without stress.

Also, this early, there are no winds to contend with. Mostly, the winds start blowing from midday to afternoon. You do not want the wind to find you on the water.

You can book your paddle board tour in advance, for example, even weeks before. That way, when you get to the shore, everything will be ready for you.

Prepare a reasonable budget

Paddle boarding is going to cost you money. Even if you have your own gear such as water shoes and water shoes, well, you will still need to hire a board. It is not possible to transport your paddle board over a long distance.

The price of renting a board starts at about $50 for 4 hours, $100 for 8 hours and about $120 for 24 hours. The board comes as a full package with the SUP leash and the paddle.

The required life jackets are also included in the given prices, so you can basically show up at the beach empty-handed.

Please ask how many people can use the SUP within the given time, whether you can take your dog, or fish from the paddle board.

As you have fun on the lake, you might need to pay for your car’s parking. Also, carry money for food and snacks.

Go as a family or a group

Always try to have a paddle boarding companion, even if they will be on their own board. In Colorado, the weather can be dramatic, as some areas experience lightning even without rain, and the wind on the lake can come from nowhere.

You need to have someone watching your back, and you watching theirs. If wind starts to blow, get out of the water as soon as possible.

Get quick lessons

Granted, a 30-minute lesson will not let you know how to paddle a SUP in a straight line. It also won’t teach you how to paddle board faster.

But it will teach you the basics that you need to have fun out there in the water. Most importantly, learn how to get back on the paddle board after falling.

Also read my posts on:

Can you go paddle boarding with bad knees?

Is paddle boarding bad for your back?

SUP brands to avoid buying

Easy Eddy Three-Piece Paddle Board Review


Not only can you paddle board on Lake Dillon, but you can also kayak there and have the fun of your life. This reservoir covers over 3000 acres of water, making it ideal for boating, kayaking, paddling, and wind surfing.

Contact water sports such as swimming, scuba diving, and snorkeling are not allowed, to protect the water.

Just note that the Colorado weather is unpredictable, so you need to go early when the water is calm and there is no wind.