Pricing shown is valid for reservations made by 4pm the day before the requested trip date. Walk-ins and late reservations made after 4pm the previous day are welcome but subject to availability and surcharges as described below. Pricing is subject to change without notice and current pricing may not be reflected in the Trip Descriptions below. Current pricing is always reflected in our Reservations section.
**Though we are open from the first of April through the end of October, the Schedules shown are for the period May 21st through Labor Day weekend. Early and late season schedules vary. Please confirm availability at least 2 days in advance during early and late season.
Rusty Oar - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 2-3 hours / approx 6 miles / Map
Price: Canoes $36 / Kayaks $25 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $40
Departure: On the hour from 9am to 3pm weekends and weekdays
Description: Our most popular trip, you check-in/pay/park at our River Ave livery and we depart via shuttle/bus to the drop-in UP RIVER at our Rusty Oar property for a 2-3 hour float back to the River Ave livery.
**Non-reservation rate add $4
White River Campground - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 3.5-4.5 hours / approx 9 miles / Map
Price: Canoes $42 / Kayaks $30 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $46
Departure: On the hour from 9am to 12pm weekends and 9am to 1pm weekdays
Description: You check-in/pay/park at our River Ave livery and we depart via shuttle to the drop-in UP RIVER at the White River Campground near Strawtown for a 3.5-4.5 hour float back to the River Ave livery. This trip involves a portage around the low-head dam at Claire across from the Rusty Oar property. You’ll need to be physically capable of carrying your canoe/kayak and gear on the portage.
**Non-reservation rate add $4
Lafayette Trace/Perkinsville - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 5.5-8 hours / approx 15 & 18 miles / Map
Price Lafayette Trace: Canoes $46 / Kayaks $33 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $50
Price Perkinsville: Canoes $48 / Kayaks $35 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $52
Departure: 9am and 10am weekends and 10am weekdays
Description: You check-in/pay/park at our River Ave livery and we depart via shuttle to the drop-in UP RIVER at either the Lafayette Trace or Perkinsville access points for a 5.5-8 hour float back to the River Ave livery. This trip involves the portage around the low-head dam at Claire across from the Rusty Oar property. You’ll need to be physically capable of carrying your canoe/kayak and gear on the portage.
**Non-reservation rate add $4
Wapahani Landing Half Day - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 3.5-4.5 hours / 9.5 miles / Map
Price: Canoes $42 / Kayaks $30 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $46
Departure: Any time between 12pm-2pm weekends and 12pm-1pm weekdays
Description: You check-in/pay/park at our River Ave livery and launch from the same facility for a 9.5 mile / 3.5-4.5 hour float DOWN RIVER to the Wapahani Landing at 116th Street. We pick you up at the end of your trip at Wapahani Landing/116th Street and shuttle you back UP RIVER to your car at our River Ave livery. Shuttles run on the half hour from 3:30pm to 6:30pm. Additional fees apply for missing the 6:30pm shuttle.
**Non-reservation rate add $4
Wapahani Landing Full Day - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 6-8 hours / approx 16 miles / Map
Price: Canoes $48 / Kayaks $35 / Tandem Kayaks (subject to availability) $52
Departure: On the hour 9am-11am weekends and weekdays
Description: You check-in/pay/park at our River Ave livery and we depart via shuttle/bus to the drop-in UP RIVER at our Rusty Oar property for a 6-8 hour float DOWN RIVER to the Wapahani Landing at 116th Street. You’re required to make a quick stop at the River Ave landing on your way down to sign a time sheet so we know your status. You must check-in at this point NO LATER THAN 2:00PM TO CONTINUE. We pick you up at the end of your trip at Wapahani Landing/116th Street and shuttle you back UP RIVER to your car at our River Ave livery. Shuttles run on the half hour from 3:30pm to 6:30pm. Additional fees apply for missing the 6:30pm shuttle.
**Non-reservation rate add $4
Overnight Camp - Canoes/Kayaks
Length: 2 day | Map
Price: Please contact us for pricing
Departure: By reservation only, please contact us for departure times and camping reservations.
Description: For those who want to pack their gear for an overnight float and camping trip, we depart from our River Road property and drop in at the Perkinsville access. You will float to either White River Campground, or to our Rusty Oar property depending on your original reservation time. This trip includes the portage around the low-head dam. You finish the following day back at our River Road livery.
We recognize that many people own their canoes and kayaks, and we also know that access and trip logistics can be a hassle. We provide livery/transport service from our River Avenue facility to all of our launch and pick-up sites on our regular trip departure and pick-up schedules. Please see the trip descriptions above for detailed information and requirements.
Prices: Rusty Oar and White River Campground launch sites and the reverse shuttle from Wapahani Landing (Half Day) $15 per boat. Shuttle times are the same as described above for the Half Day Wapahani Landing trip, and additional fees apply if you miss the last shuttle at 6:30pm.
Lafayette Trace and Perkinsville launch sites and the Full Day Wapahani Landing trip $25 per boat. Shuttle times and check-in requirements are the same as described for the Full Day Wapahani Landing above, and additional fees apply if you miss the last shuttle at 6:30pm.
You must reserve your trip by 4pm the day before your requested trip date. Non-reservation surcharges of $4 per boat apply and you may have to wait if you don’t make a reservation, but your car will be safe in our lot so you can relax and enjoy your day without wondering if your ride home is where you left it.
River Tube Trips
Length: 2-3 hours / approx 3.5 miles / Map
**Trip length-of-time can vary greatly depending on water levels. We provide a shorter trip alternative from Forest Park in late summer/low water conditions and for mid/late afternoon departures.
Price: $12 for a 44" Tube (kids) / $12 for a 48” Tube (adults) / $15 for a 48" Tube w/Backrest (subject to availability at time of check-in)/ $22 for a Twin Tube
Cooler Tube Rental: $12
Tube Links (for tying together): $1
Departure: Hourly from 10am to 1pm. See Forest Park trip for later departures
Description: We depart from our River Road livery and drop-in at historic Potter’s Bridge north of downtown Noblesville for a 3-4 hour float back down to the River Road livery.
Forest Park – the short trip
Forest Park is the launch for tubes in low and slow water conditions and for those who want to take a short late afternoon paddle.
Length: 1-2 hours / approx 1.5 miles / Map
Price: all tubes are $12 / cooler tubes $12 / canoes & tandem kayaks $18 / kayaks $12
Departure: Hourly from 2pm to 4pm
Description: We depart from our River Road livery and drop-in at the Forest Park ramp in downtown Noblesville for a 1-2 hour float back down to the River Road livery.
We welcome large groups. Canoeing is a great platform for team building, company picnics or outings, church functions, family reunions, scout projects, and school group activities. Our properties at Rusty Oar and River Avenue provide a peaceful and scenic back drop for your group to enjoy, and make the logistics of assembly, transportation, and wrapping up the event very easy to execute. The definition of a large group is a total of 20 people or more. The group can utilize any combination of canoes and kayaks. We have tents, tables, chairs, and partnerships with caterers who can supply food and drinks. We offer discounted pricing based on the number of people in your party. Please contact us at our 317-867-4233 reservation number for scheduling and detailed planning.
We are working on additional trips that will provide access to the river from Anderson to Fishers and Carmel. One of these will be a river tube trip, and we will add at least two new canoe/kayak trips. We will update our site to include these new trips as they open, please stay tuned.
Please view the map and the specific trip information above to help you plan your excursion. Also note that for all trips starting above Rusty Oar, a dam portage is required during the trip. It is important (for your safety) that you are aware of this river feature. More detailed information is available in the FAQ section.
What to Bring
Wear or bring anything you don’t mind getting wet, and dress for the weather conditions of the day. We supply our customers with lifejackets (several sizes), paddles, a shuttle up-river, and your desired boat/tube. Seat cushions and links to connect a group of tubes can be rented for an additional fee.
Getting Here and Parking
Travel to our livery at 17180 River Road, Noblesville, IN 46060, and plan to arrive at least 30 minutes before your reservation time. Stop to check in at the office on your left as you enter our property. Please check in first, and then park in the lot behind the office. Map your trip
Paying, Paperwork, and Beginning
You will check in at the office as you enter the property. You must complete our Waiver Form for each person in your party prior to checking in and making payment. The Waiver Form can be downloaded from the FORMS section of the web site below. Our office staff will take payment in Visa, MasterCard, or cash and give you a “work order” that lists your trip, number of people, and equipment rented. They’ll also give provide instructions for parking and boarding the shuttle. You will give the “work order” form to one of our STAFF prior to boarding your designated shuttle.
Shuttling and Embarking
Your party will travel in passenger vans or bus to the launch location. We will present our safety speech that will cover everything you will need to know about making your adventure as safe as possible. Our Staff will assist you if necessary as you enter and launch your boat.
Approximate travel times via shuttle from the Check-In location to launch points are as follows:
- Rusty Oar: approx 15 minutes
- Potter’s Bridge: approx 10 minutes
- White River Campground: approx 20 minutes
- Lafayette Trace Park: approx 30 minutes
- Wapahani Landing: approx 20 minutes
Ending Your Trip
Your finishing point will be the location on River Road where you parked and checked in. A short walk up the stairs and decks from the landing and you’ll be back at your car. If your trip destination is Wapahani Landing, we will pick you up beneath the 116th Street bridge and shuttle you back to the River Avenue livery where your car is parked.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How many passengers can fit in a boat?
- When should my group arrive to go canoeing?
- For how many hours do we get to use the boat?
- Is there an age or size requirement?
- Can I bring a pet?
- Is this a dangerous river?
- What is the dam portage and what is required in regards to this obstacle?
- Do we need reservations?
- What if the weather doesn't cooperate?
- If there is an emergency what do we do?
- We have a large group. Is there anything we should know to make our lives easier when planning our trip?
- So what If I have my own boat?
How many passengers can fit in a boat?
Each boat in our fleet has a legal maximum occupancy limit (number of passengers) and/or a maximum weight capacity determined by the boat manufacturer. The maximum weight capacity is the total weight of all passengers and equipment. Our older aluminum canoes can hold no more than three (3) passengers with a gross weight of no more than four hundred and fifty (450) pounds. The newer plastic canoes have a flat 1150# weight limit and so can hold up to four (4) passengers provided two (2) passengers are adults and the additional passengers are small children under 90#. We may, at our sole discretion based on current water levels and weather conditions, allow only 2 passengers per canoe. Kayaks can hold one passenger, and tandem kayaks can hold two passengers.
When should my group arrive to go canoeing?
We recommend that you arrive one half hour (30 minutes) prior to your desired departure time. Please check-in at the office FIRST, and then proceed to the parking area. Waiver Forms should be completed prior to your arrival to expedite the check-in process. Waiver Forms can be downloaded in the FORMS section on our web site. You will receive your life jackets when you check in with our Staff at the shuttle loading zone, and you should have all members of your party ready to begin loading your shuttle no later than ten (10) minutes before its scheduled departure time.
For how many hours do we get to use the boat?
Every one of our rentals covers the entire day! We want all of our customers to take as much or as little time as they want on the river. With this in mind there is one RULE: Every boat and/or tube and all rented equipment must be returned no later than 6pm. Our latest departure times for every trip provide ample time for covering the trip distance before 6pm. Additional fees apply if you return later than 6pm, and if you miss the final evening shuttle at Wapahani Landing.
Is there an age or size requirement?
Yes and yes. The easiest part of this answer: we do not allow infants or toddlers who cannot walk unassisted on their own. If your child can walk under their own power but weighs less than 50#, you must bring their own life jacket rated for the child’s weight with a safety buckle that passes between the legs so it cannot be slipped over the head without removing the strap. Our child life jackets are rated down to 50#- hence the reason for this requirement. If you are under eighteen (18) years of age a parent or guardian must sign our Waiver Form on your behalf. The Waiver Form has a section at the bottom where the consenting adult can sign for a Minor(s). THE consenting adult who has signed for Minors must also be present at the time of check-in/payment whether they accompany the group canoeing or not. You must be 18 years of age with photo ID to rent a boat independently. We may, at our sole discretion based on current water level and weather conditions, alter this policy for reasons of personal safety. Please always call ahead and check weather and water conditions.
Can I bring a pet?
Yes- absolutely. What a better way to spend a day with a dog- frolicking on a sand bar in the middle of the river. Please have them on a leash, pick up after them, and be considerate of those around you who might not share your affection. If, on our busy days, it becomes necessary to use an extra shuttle to accommodate you and Fido, we will require an additional fee of $10 for the short trips (Potter’s Bridge/Rusty Oar/Wapahani Landing) or $15 for the long trips (White River Campground/Lafayette Trace/Perkinsville). We’ll always do our best to use the right shuttles and make this unnecessary, but keep it in mind because we won’t know ahead of time if we need to use an extra shuttle.
Is this a dangerous river?
No matter how lazy or predictable a river may seem there are always hidden dangers and risk factors associated with canoeing or kayaking. Ignorance is not bliss when safety is concerned. That is why we go out of our way to make sure that you and your group are equipped with proper safety gear (more than most state laws require) and that we inform everyone repeatedly of dangers on the river. The water is not necessarily deep at most points (usually three to six feet) and generally does not have a swift current. However, as it is a natural body of water and not an amusement park ride mother nature can change the conditions whenever she feels. This means that fallen trees, rock formations, and even the wildlife can play a factor in the river conditions. If you have any safety questions or concerns we ask that you voice them to any one of our staff members before your outing gets underway. We would rather spend an extra few minutes clarifying safety information than have any member of your party feel uncomfortable during what is supposed to be a fun and relaxing day. (Just as a minor note: Our drivers will always recite a pre-written safety speech before loading any passengers into the boats. We've found that nearly all of the issues we've had in the past are from parties that do not take the information seriously. We ask that everyone in your group listens to this information and adheres to it during the entire trip to make the day as safe as possible.)
What is the dam portage and what is required in regards to this obstacle?
Roughly six (6) miles north of our livery there is a dam that spans the entire width of the river, making it impossible to paddle around with your watercraft. The process is fairly simple. On the west side of the river there is a canoe portage at which you beach your boat and carry it around the provided pathway. Once around simply set your boat back in the water and continue on your trip. Anything north of the Rusty Oar (location provided on the map) requires that you use this portage. If you or any member of your group is unable to perform this task then please inform us of this so that we can help you with other options and arrangements.
Do we need reservations?
Yes- during times when the weather is great and we’re going to have large crowds, you don’t want to come and find that we’re sold out of capacity or you’ll have to wait until later to catch a shuttle. Yes- especially during early and late season when we’re not as busy. On early/late season days with no reservations showing on the book, we’ll often close the office and do other work with the boats or the properties whereby we won’t be immediately available to take you on your trip. A reservation is considered a reservation if placed by 4pm the day before your desired trip- whether through our on line system or over the phone. You’re always welcome to walk in if circumstances make advanced reservation impossible. We charge an additional fee of $4 but we’ll do our best to take you on your desired trip if staff and equipment are available.
What if the weather doesn't cooperate?
We actively monitor weather and water levels using the United States Geological Survey data taken at the Logan Street Bridge in Noblesville just a half-mile upriver from our River Avenue landing. We also monitor the Anderson and Muncie river gauges. We have the USGS information correlated with different physical references at the Rusty Oar launch and the River Avenue landing. This allows us to know with certainty whether we can effectively launch and land boats. As the water rises, we lose the ability to launch/land effectively well before the river becomes too dangerous to paddle, so the necessary caution occurs naturally. Weather the day-of is always spot-decision. We work in the rain, but not the lightning. The radar is always on in the office, and we have the Weather Channel on our smart phones. We’ll sometimes delay to allow storms to pass and assess any flash flood potential, but we’ll never purposely launch anyone into a coming storm or flood. Payment is final once your group has checked in, but we will give you priority in choosing a make-up date.
If there is an emergency what do we do?
Honestly, we hope that you and your group consider this possibility. Boating is a risk activity, regardless of the safety measures taken to minimize the danger. We always advise that at least one member of the group carries a cellular phone in case of emergency. If the situation warrants immediate aid, dial 911. We have very limited ability to get to you while you are on the river. We can offer this: Do not panic. Make sure everyone is safe. Get to a phone. Call 911 first and outline your situation, then call our office so we can assist you and the emergency response personnel in any way within our power. Stay calm and rationally consider the best course of action given your current environment.
We have a large group. Is there anything we should know to make our lives easier when planning our trip?
Always make a reservation. We host a lot of large groups and can help you with planning and execution. A large group should arrive 30-45 minutes before the scheduled departure time. The group leader should have the Waiver Forms for the entire group in a file folder to hand us at check-in so we can account for every person in the group. You must have a single payer- we consider a large group who pay individually as a large group of individuals. We will not honor group discounted pricing when the group pays individually. We recommend car pooling or arranging transport to us in a bus/shuttle to avoid parking issues. Consider scheduling your large group on weekdays or early/late season to avoid otherwise large weekend crowds. Work with us to plan your outing so you can enjoy the day too.
So what If I have my own boat?
See the section on our Adventures page regarding Livery/Transport service. We provide shuttle for you and your boat to any of our launch points for a fee.
Download and complete the following forms prior to your visit to White River Canoe Company:
Instruction, Tips & Safety
Rules of the Road - What Paddlers Need to Know
Canoeing and Kayaking are great fun. Just ask any paddler you find on the water. Paddling offers so much to so many; quiet lazy paddling, intense adrenaline or the path to more adventure and fun. Paddling is a great way to access nature, experience reflective moments and enjoy family and friends away from the distractions of life.
Conflicts often arise between various boating groups because of craft size, education and training of the operators, maneuverability, geographic constraints and the sheer numbers of recreational users of the waterways. Paddlers do need to be aware of a few of the “Rules of the Road” when sharing resources with other marine traffic.
Importantly, keep a proper lookout. Remember to be courteous to other boaters and law enforcement officers. They’re there to help you to be safe and have fun!
First and foremost, please be aware of your surroundings. You may be the only craft on the water or may be sharing the channel with others. Whatever the circumstance, your awareness of other traffic may make the sole difference in the safety of everyone on the water.
Remember to cross other boats as a group instead of straggling across the river and blocking other traffic. In shared waterways, the more boaters watching out for others, the safer everyone will be.
10 Ways to Paddle Safely
1. ALWAYS Wear Your Life Jacket - Wear a properly fitting U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket at all times on the water.
2. Don’t drink while paddling - Avoid alcohol, which impairs the coordination and balance you need to control a canoe or kayak.
3. Stay Low - Learn how to enter and exit your boat safely and stay low in your boat when possible. Most paddlesport-related drownings are the result of capsizing.
4. Keep Your Balance - Don’t overload your boat. Distribute passengers, secure gear evenly and low..
5. Practice the Wet Exit - Learn how to get out of, hang on to, right, and re-enter your capsized boat.
6. Don’t Get Left in the Cold - Dress for the weather conditions and be prepared for coldwater immersion. Hypothermia is a danger any time of year.
7. Plan Ahead - Know the water you’re paddling, plan your day of paddling, and file a “float plan” so that someone knows where to find you and when you plan to return.
8. Never Paddle Alone - Companions can come to your aid if you get in trouble. New paddlers should paddle with someone more experienced—it’s a great way to learn and remain safe if there’s a mishap.
9. Be in Command - Know how to move your boat forward, back, and sideways, and how to stop using paddle strokes. Watch ahead for hazards like undercut rocks, bridge pilings, large branches and trees, big drop-offs, or other boats.
10. Learn about Your Boat - Consider taking a canoe or kayak safety class.
How to Choose the Correct Life Jacket - A Guide from Your United States Coast Guard
A wearable life jacket for each person must be aboard.
These life jackets must be…
- US Coast Guard approved
- The proper size for the intended wearer
- In good and serviceable condition
- Properly stowed (readily accessible)
When a vessel is underway with children under 13 years old, they must be wearing a life jacket unless they are below deck or in an enclosed cabin.
If a life jacket fits properly...
It will help keep your head above the water. Too big, and the life jacket will ride up around your face. Too small, it will not be able to keep your body afloat. Life jackets designed for adults will not work for children!
Try it on for size...
- Check the manufacturer’s label to ensure that the life jacket is a proper fit for your size and weight.
- Make sure the jacket is properly fastened.
- Hold your arms straight up over your head.
- Ask a friend to grasp the tops of the arm openings and gently pull up.
- Make sure there is no excess room above the openings and that the jacket does not ride up over your chin or face.
- For the best fit, try the life jacket in shallow water under safe and supervised conditions.
For Additional Information
Visit the American Canoe Association for additional information regarding education related to all aspects of paddling; stewardship support to help protect paddling environments; and sanctioning of programs and events to promote paddlesport recreation.