Morning river coffee is the best coffee
Morning river coffee is the best coffee
A well deserved lunch stop on a camping and cleaning trip
A well-deserved lunch stop on a camping and cleaning trip
stoking the fire

Firewood is commonly available for responsible use





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River Camping Paddle Trips 

  A typical overnight trip on the upper Little Manatee begins with a bus ride upriver 10 miles to our Trip 4 put in.  Most folks paddle 2-4 hours on day 1 covering between 5-7 miles. On day 2 you can choose to leisurely fish and paddle the remains of the 10 miles back to the Canoe Outpost and stop there or you can continue on through the State Park for about 2 1/2 hours more and cover the additional 6 miles down to our day run take out for a 16 mile 2 day run. Camp sites on the upper sections are generally small openings in the woods,  suitable for 1-4 tents but no large groups.

     A lower river paddle camping trip begins at the Canoe Outpost and follows our Trip 1 day run and the loop extension sections for a 31/2 hour paddle to the primitive campsite in the state park. On day 2 you have the option of a short paddle back to our day run pick up point or continuing on through the lower, more open river sections to Wildcat Park west of I-75. ( There is a $10 per boat extra transportation charge for Wildcat Park pickup ) Your day 2 paddle time on the lower sections can be as short as 2 hours or longer with a side trip into Desperation Creek. The campsite on the lower river is more open could accommodate larger groups of up to 20 people. It is land accessible and offers an easy hike to restrooms and showers in the state park. Camp area reservations and per person fees are required with the state park.

     You may also choose to combine sections of the river to get the length and type of trip you want. Just ask and we will work with you. Any trip you choose is sure to be fun and an adventure. Be sure to check out the specific trip descriptions on the Little Manatee River Trips page. Remember that the upper sections of the river are more challenging and natural and you may encounter some obstructions. Please call for a conditions report before you plan your trip.

     For those who want the feel of a paddle camping trip but the flexibility of having land accessibility and facilities, the Canoe Outpost offers a variety of options. Perhaps you would do our Trip 3 or Trip 4 runs on day 1, camp at the Outpost and do our Trip 1 the next day. From deluxe cabins, individual campsites, group camp sites with a pavilion or woodsy semi-primitive group sites, you choose your level of comfort. ( Please see our Camping & Lodging page for camp descriptions )

     For paddle camping, we provide just the same gear as we do for our day trips so it is essential that you bring all the camping gear you need. Our outpost store offers dry bags for sale or rent. Be sure to bring trash bags and bring back all waste. You will need a shovel or other tool for latrine use. Extreme caution must be used to prevent forest fires and no live trees are to be cut. Responsibility and respect for the wild is the key to successful, sustainable camping trips on the river. 

Rates: There is no charge for primitive river camping on the upper river. The only fees are for the rental of the boat of your choice. Most commonly you will use a 17’ aluminum Grumman canoe to get most capacity. The rental rates are the same for each