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Hydrobiking

Updated: Jul 23, 2022


Anywhere you stop along the California coastline, there is probably a kayak rental within 15 miles of you. But have you heard of hydrobiking? Close to Monterey, at Moss Landing, is a small place that rents hydrobikes: bicycle frames held afloat by two "surfboards" with a small propeller that turns as you pedal. It's a fun, unique way to explore the California coastline without all the splashing and soreness of kayaking. You dont even need to know how to ride a bike! It is safe for the entire family, young and old, and a terrific way to celebrate a birthday of that fitness addict in your friend or family circle.



While our family initially was skeptical of hydrobikes, we were impressed by how safe, stable, and fun our experience was. We rented our hydrobikes from Monterey Bay Hydrobikes and they were incredibly accommodating and helpful throughout. Marcus, the owner, was extremely welcoming and answered all of our questions. He was very forthcoming on the phone and assured us that we will be safe and have fun on the bikes and he even gave us a great deal for a 2-hour hydrobike rental. 2 hours is the shortest duration they offer and it truly flies by!

Pro tip : Wear cushioned biking shorts. Else your butt will be pretty sore after 2 hours on the bike!

 

>> Got a question about Hydrobiking that you need answered quickly? DM me on Instagram @SolaraStills and I’ll be happy to help! I only accept DMs from followers, so hit the follow button before sending.

 

The owner, Marcus, attending to a customer



The route we were advised to take was through the Elkhorn Slough. We were told that this location was optimal to see marine wildlife and they were right! Having lived in California for almost 30 years, we had never seen this much marine life in one place outside of an aquarium. As soon as we hit the water, we began spotting otters, harbor seals, and sea lions all along the slough. The otters were especially daring and would swim right up to the hydrobikes and kayaks. The seals would pop their heads out of the water every so often and the sea lions sunbathed on the banks of the slough. We were mesmerized by the number of animals we saw and couldn't stop taking photos and videos. So much so that we got our bikes caught in the eel grass a few times.



While the hydrobikes were mostly smooth sailing, you had to be careful of the patches of eel grass throughout the slough that could get caught in the propeller of the hydrobike. Luckily, Marcus showed us beforehand how to get ourselves untangled and it wasnt tricky at all. Aside from this hiccup, we were pleasantly surprised by how stable the hydrobikes were. There was never any chance of tipping over and you could even get off the bikes and stand on either of the floating "surfboards" to take a break from pedaling. Each bike had a small storage compartment in the front where you could keep your phones, jackets, or food. Towards the end of the trip, our legs started to tire but we were nowhere near as exhausted (or as wet) as we would have been had we kayaked.



Overall this was a fun, new experience that you should definitely try next time you are near Monterey. It's great for tourists and locals alike and is worth every penny!



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