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paddle trail routes,
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Welcome To Down East Paddle Trails

Down East’s creeks and marshes, Core Sound’s shallow waters and the sound side shoals and sloughs of Core and Shackleford Banks provide a quiet and undiscovered opportunity for paddlers. Experience coastal North Carolina rich in natural beauty as well as maritime history and heritage.

The Down East Paddle Trail Map is the first to highlight trails in the Down East area of Carteret County, the southern arm of the Outer Banks National Scenic Byway. The sixteen trails, ranging in length from 2.3 miles to 13.7 miles, are designated as easy, moderate, or difficult. The trails meander through saltwater marshes, channels and sloughs that will offer the paddler an experience that fits their ability level, from short day trips to multi-day campouts.

Paddlers can glide through the Straits, Back Sound or Core Sound enjoying bird watching opportunities in some of the most pristine waters in the world. Kayaking affords an intimate and quiet view of the uninhabited Outer Banks.

Remember to pay attention to the winds and tides, and bring plenty of water, sunscreen, and insect repellent; water shoes and protective clothing are strongly advised.

For your convenience, we have created the following list of kayak launch sites: