Blackwater Trip Info Packet

Thank you for registering for beginner kayaking trips with Potomac Paddlesports! You’ll soon discover that, for a bunch of paddlers, we’re pretty organized. This packet of information is provided to help keep you organized and ensure that you are fully prepared for your lessons. Please review all of this information carefully at least one week prior to your lesson. You may contact us at any time with questions by calling 301-881-2628 or emailing us at

For expert service when purchasing paddling clothing or equipment, please visit our retail store at 9812 Falls Road Potomac, Maryland 20854. We look forward to paddling with you!


This packet contains the following:

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.

  1. You have up to two years from your first trip to complete any membership package.
  2. Please schedule or re-schedule your trip online.
  3. You have up until 72 hours before start time to reschedule (please do so online). Guests who do not reschedule in time or don’t show up forfeit their trip. No exceptions are made to this policy and we do not offer refunds.
  4. Please do not wait until the last minute to prepare for your trip.
  5. Please arrive and be prepared fifteen minutes prior to your trip start time. (Late arrivals will not be admitted.)
  6. Personal floatation, paddle, and kayak are provided at no charge.
  7. Although our beginner trips do not include intentional capsizing, you could accidentally end up in the water. Therefore, in the spring and fall we require that all participants wear synthetic clothing that dries quickly. Patagonia Capilene is great for such a situation and it can be worn under basic nylon pants and jackets. Long pants are a good idea on many beginner trips. Visit our retail store for assistance with purchasing the right clothing for kayaking.
  8. On some trips, you will have to help carry your kayak on two short portages.
  9. Store your car key in a “Hide-a-Key” box or similar somewhere on your vehicle.
  10. You may repeat any trip at a discounted rate of 10%. Please call our registration office for further information.
  11. All trips meet rain or shine. A decision to postpone due to lightning or other dangerous conditions is made on-site at the last possible minute. (Mother Nature often cooperates if we wait and see.)
  12. For your safety and enjoyment, we request that you keep your personal information up to date via your schedule page. Please log in and update your info at

List of Things to Bring

The following list of things to bring is for your comfort, safety, and enjoyment of your on-water experience with us. ALL ITEMS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED. Please call or visit our retail store for assistance. (See map and directions below.)

Support our retail business buy buying some of these items from us!

Shop Now

Directions to Our Retail Store

Our retail store (not lessons!) is located at 9812 Falls Road, Potomac, MD 20854. Our phone number is (301) 881-2628. Click on the Directions link in the map below for directions.

Directions to Lesson Location

The Blackwater trip is held at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Cambridge, MD. For alternate routes, google “2145 Key Wallace Drive, Cambridge, Maryland 21613.”

From DC, Baltimore and Annapolis:
  1. Take Route 50 east towards the Bay Bridge
  2. Cross over the Bay Bridge (toll required)
  3. After about 9.5 miles, merge onto Ocean Gateway/US-50 towards Ocean City.
  4. After 34.8 miles, turn right onto Church Creek Rd/Gypsy Hill Rd/MD-16.
  5. After 7.3 miles, turn left on MD-335/Church Creek-Golden Hill Rd.
  6. After 3.8 miles, turn left onto Key Wallace Rd.
  7. After 0.8 miles, the Blackwater Visitor’s Center will be on your right.
  8. Park in the Visitor’s Center parking lot and look for the Potomac Paddlesports trailer and guides.
If you get lost, you can call the Blackwater Visitor’s Center at 410-228-2677.

PLEASE have your clothing and supplies ready to go fifteen minutes prior to start time so that we can start promptly. style="border:0" frameborder="0" height="450" width="700">