Connect with the James

James River Guided Paddles

Join the James River Association on guided canoe and kayak programs on the James River and its tributaries in the Richmond region.

James River RX

The James River Association is prescribing you a dose of nature!

The Great Return

Celebrate James River Week and the Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon!

We believe the best way to develop an appreciation for the James River is to connect with it! 

We offer guided canoe and kayak programs to connect people to the history and natural resources of the James and its tributaries through outdoor recreation from March until November. We also offer monthly James River Rx sessions that use ecotherapy practices to connect people to nature through art, journaling, meditation, and a variety of other mindful practices.

Spending time in nature, especially near water, offers great benefits to our emotional, mental, and physical well being. Take care of yourself and join James River Association staff members on an upcoming program to learn about the river and become a better steward of our natural resources.

James River Rx

Ecotherapy in Action: James River Rx and Wildrock

The uncertainty and pandemic that has hit us in 2020, has been leading people to seek the support of the natural world. Ecotherapy is an emerging field that helps us to understand how our wellbeing is intertwined with nature. In this webinar, explore simple practices for cultivating a nourishing, reciprocal relationship with the natural world. Two local ecotherapists, Amber Ellis, JRA’s Senior Watershed Restoration Manager, and Carolyn Schuyler, Wildrock’s Executive Director, will introduce you to this field and guide you through an ecotherapy exercise from your own home. Our hope is that you leave the hour with some tools to add to your toolbox that will bring you closer to nature and yourself.

The James River Association is prescribing you a dose of nature! Research has shown that intentional time in nature is good for our physical, mental, and emotional health. It’s time to slow down, put down your phone, notice what’s around you, and simply breathe in the fresh air. Participants should expect a brief meditation, connection exercises like journaling, art, exploration, and sharing this experience with others in the group.

There are recurring James River Rx sessions in the James River Park System in Richmond on the fourth Wednesday of every month. Based on participants, needs, and seasons the time could change. There will also be special events throughout the watershed at various points in the year.

These experiences will be led by Amber Ellis, JRA’s Watershed Restoration Manager, who has a certificate in Ecotherapy through the EarthBody Institute. If you have any questions about our James River Rx program, please contact aellis@jrava.org for more information.

James River Rx sessions are currently on hold.

 

“Loved the location, off of the beaten path, loved the people in attendance. Amber guided us through with love and care-for ourselves and nature. Looking forward to attending more! Thank you!”

“I was much calmer for the rest of the day, and I felt much more connected and renewed in my appreciation of nature and my life.”

James River Rx attendee

Guided Trips

Preregistration is required for all programs. Participants must review and agree to the Essential Eligibility Criteria and the Release and Waiver of Liability to participate. The James River Association will provide canoes and kayaks, paddles, and personal flotation devices to participants. Participants are encouraged to bring sunscreen, a hat, a reusable water bottle, and wear comfortable clothing appropriate for being outdoors and getting wet.

Registration fees are considered donations to the James River Association and are not refundable. In the event a program is canceled, James River Association staff members will make an effort to reschedule it. Registration opens approximately 2 weeks prior to trip date. Registration links will be provided below as they open.

 
If you have any questions about our programs, please contact Justin Doyle at jdoyle@thejamesriver.org.

Sign up for notifications

Interested in a paddle that hasn’t opened for registration? Our guided Connect with the James paddles fill up quickly, sign up here to receive a notification when trip registration open.

Explore Presquile National Wildlife Refuge – Pontoon Boat (Ages 16+) $40/participant

Join the James River Association for a pontoon boat ride to Presquile National Wildlife Refuge for a specialty program provided by JRA educators.  Presquile is a 1,329-acre island  wildlife refuge and the home to our James River Ecology School. The recent structure change in our school system has enabled our educators to offer new opportunities to adults this fall. We have a limited capacity and encourage participants to bring masks.

Explore the Fall Line by Canoe (Ages 16+) $20/participant

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Richmond’s Fall Line by canoe. Two James River Association Environmental Educators will meet you at Ancarrow’s Landing. We will paddle in the heart of downtown Richmond up to the fall line. JRA educators will discuss Ancarrows, Great Shiplock Park and the Fall Line.

Explore Four Mile Creek by Canoe (Ages 16+) $20/participant

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Four Mile Creek by canoe. This 2 hour guided excursion will be led by two JRA Environmental Educators beginning at Henrico County Deep Bottom Park. The paddle is flat water section of the James that has many tidal wetlands. Birds, turtles, and wetlands plants are the attractions.

Explore Turkey Island Creek by Canoe (Ages 16+) $20/participant

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Turkey Island Creek by canoe. Participants will launch from the James River Association’s Turkey Island Creek property and learn about the natural and historic resources of Turkey Island Creek and the James River. Canoes, paddles, and personal flotation devices are provided by the James River Association.

Friday, Oct. 30, 2020 Turkey Island Creek 4:30 pm Register Now

Migratory Birds of Powhatan Creek Paddle Trips (Ages 16+)

FREE – Pre-Registration required

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Powhatan Creek, led by expert birders. Participants will learn about the natural and historic resources of Powhatan Creek and the James River with any emphasis on the diverse migratory bird species found in the area. Kayaks/canoes, paddles, and personal flotation devices will be provided.

 

Explore Powhatan Creek by Kayak (Ages 16+) FREE – Pre-Registration required

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Powhatan Creek by kayak. Participants will launch from James City County Marina and learn about the natural and historic resources of Powhatan Creek and the James River. Kayaks, paddles, and personal flotation devices will be provided by James City County.

 

Explore Powhatan Creek by Canoe (Ages 16+) FREE – Pre-registration required

 

Join the James River Association for a guided tour of Powhatan Creek by canoe. Participants will learn about the natural and historic resources of Powhatan Creek and the James River. Canoes, paddles, and personal flotation devices will be provided by the James River Association. This is an out-and-back paddle and does not require a shuttle.

The Great Return

Celebrate James River Week and the Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon with the James River Association! Join staff members on a guided canoe program or an outing on the Spirit of the James, the James River Association’s pontoon boat. Participants will learn about the natural resources of the James River and the endangered Atlantic sturgeon, which make an annual migration up the James River in late summer where they often can be seen breaching out of the water!

 

The Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon (Canoe Programs – Ages 16+) $20/participant

Celebrate James River Week and the Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon with the James River Association! Join staff members on a guided canoe program launching from Henrico County’s Osborne Park & Boat Landing. Participants will learn about the natural resources of the James River and the endangered Atlantic sturgeon, which make their annual spawning migration up the James River in late summer.

The 2020 Season has ended, join next year during James River Week!

The Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon (Pontoon Boat – Spirit of the James) $25/participant

Celebrate James River Week and the Great Return of the Atlantic Sturgeon with the James River Association! Join staff members for an outing on the Spirit of the James launching from Rocketts Landing Marina. Participants will learn about the natural resources of the James River and the endangered Atlantic sturgeon, which make their annual spawning migration up the James River in late summer.

The 2020 Season has ended, join next year during James River Week!