Boating, Paddling and Fishing

We have boat launches along the Sonoma Coast and Russian River as well as on several lakes and a waterway of San Pablo Bay. 

Boat Launches 

Doran Regional Park - Located on a spit separating Bodega Harbor and Bodega Bay, Doran Park has a launch on the harbor for boats up to 20 feet. The launch fee is $4 per trailered boat. This park also has a large campground and a long beach popular with families.

Westside Regional Park - Westside Park also is on Bodega Harbor and features a three-lane boat launch, a wheelchair-accessible kayak launch and expanded parking for trailers. The launch fee is $4 per trailered boat. Frequented by fishermen, Westside has a campground with tent and RV spots. 

Stillwater Cove Regional Park - Located on Sonoma County's far north coast, Stillwater Cove offers access to a beach where you can off-load kayaks and small boats for a short portage to the ocean.  

Wohler Bridge - Wohler Bridge river access is a seasonal launch on the Russian River in Forestville. You can off-load small craft here from Oct. 1 through May 15, but you'll first need a fishing access permit and a key from our Santa Rosa office.

Steelhead Beach -Steelhead Beach is another Russian River boat launch in Forestville. The gravel launch here is best for drift boats, kayaks and canoes.

Cloverdale River Park   - This quiet park on the upper Russian River features a new, paved launch for small craft.

Spring Lake Regional Park - Spring Lake is a 72-acre lake in east Santa Rosa with a paved ramp for boats up to 16 feet. Electric motors are OK. Gas motors are not. The launch fee is $4 per trailered boat. Spring Lake is great for kayaking, paddle boarding, and canoeing, and has paddle boats and kayaks for rent in the summer.

Hudeman Slough - This launch in southern Sonoma County provides access to San Pablo Bay and can accommodate boats up to 24 feet. You first need to obtain an access key and permit from our office in Santa Rosa.

For a complete list of boating sites, visit the Find a Park page.

For kayaking, paddleboarding, and canoeing, the parks offer spots to launch on the Russian River and on Bodega Harbor. We also have lakes at Spring Lake and Riverfront parks perfect for paddling. For a complete list, visit our Find a Park page and search for kayaking/canoeing parks.

Kayaks and paddleboards are available for rent by the hour at Spring Lake Regional Park from Memorial Day weekend through the early fall. (The rental desk is at the Lakeside Grill next to the swimming lagoon.)

Paddleboards rentals and guided paddleboard tours are available at Riverfront Regional Park in the summer by appointment. (Visit russianriverpaddleboards.com for more information.)

Paddling

Paddling the Russian River

The Russian River runs through Sonoma County from Cloverdale in the north to Jenner in the west. Seven Regional Parks located along the way provide launch points for kayaks, paddleboards, canoes and inner tubes. Paddling season is typically May through September. 

Some of the most interesting nature-watching takes place on the Russian River, so while paddling between parks, you might see ospreys, bald eagles, kingfishers, great blue herons, turtles, otters and other birds and wildlife you may not notice on land.

Some Travel Times by Kayak

  • Del Rio Woods to Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach - 1.5 to 2 hours
  • Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach to Forestville River Access - 4 to 6 hours
  • Steelhead Beach to Sunset Beach - 2 hours
  • Steelhead Beach to Guerneville River Park - 4 to 5 hours  
  • Guerneville River Park to Monte Rio - 1.5 hours
  • Monte Rio to the Highway 1 bridge in Jenner - 3-4 hours

If traveling by canoe, add 1 to 2 hours to the kayak times.

The Regional Parks offer a variety of freshwater or saltwater fishing spots, from Bodega Bay and the beaches of the north coast to the shores of the Russian River and inland lakes and ponds. For a complete list of locations, visit our Find a Park page and search for parks with fishing.

Fishing on the Russian River

The Russian River is destination for fishing year round, and we have plenty of fishing spots in our river parks. The river fishery includes the famed steelhead runs of the fall and winter, shad in the spring, and bass, bluegill and catfish in the summer. Remember, no barbed hooks are allowed on the river, and bait cannot be used from November through April. All wild steelhead caught in the river must be released. Some of our best fishing locations are Steelhead Beach, Wohler Bridge and Cloverdale River Park.

Fishing on the Sonoma Coast

We have beaches where you can fish from shore and boat launches where you can try your luck at sea. Salmon, halibut, code, tuna, and of course, Dungeness crab are some of the fish you’ll find in Sonoma County’s ocean waters. For deep sea fishing, there are launches at Doran and Westside parks on Bodega Harbor. Doran also has opportunities for crabbing and fishing from a rock jetty at the harbor mouth and clamming in the mud flats. Spud Point Marina offers berths for sport and commercial fishing boats. Farther up the coast, Stillwater Cove attracts abalone divers, and Gualala Point Regional Park has seasonal fishing on the Gualala River.

Fishing in lakes, ponds, bay

We have ponds in Helen Putnam, Foothill and Riverfront parks and 72-acre Spring Lake, where you can fish for blue gill, bass and and sunfish. Hudeman Slough has striped bass and access to all the fishing San Pablo Bay has to offer. 

Ready to get some fresh air?
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