-- Last Updated: Feb-07-13 8:02 AM EST --
may be another good alternative for you. They introduced us to flatwater and WW canoeing many years ago with classes and learning trips that were very well organized and supervised. http://www.baltimorecanoeclub.org/index.php Might also check Meetup.com paddling/adventure groups in your area. Ours does basic classes, winter pool sessions, and fun trips, and members always willing to share their boats so you can try different sizes and designs before you buy. Second getting as much pool time as you can this winter practicing safety and self & assisted rescues. Rick NC
PS I teach USCG Auxiliary Boating Safety courses and add paddling info but not all instructors paddlers. They do have a new paddle safety course but no on-water component.