Created in memory of a Missoula native who loved kayaking the world's rivers, Brennan's Wave is located in the middle of the Clark Fork River just off the shores of the city's downtown. If you want to ride the man-made wave, summer crowds will gather along the banks to see you tempt the rapids and hearty winter souls will brave the uber-cold temps with you for Stand Up Surfing.
I learned to kayak from one of Missoula's best instructors. His name is Land (perfect name for a guy who spends most of his waking hours on the water) and he runs Tarkio Kayak Adventures.
Land and his team of intrepid teachers take groups of adventurers on week-long trips through Montana and Idaho, and they have a fabulous kayaking expedition through Bhutan.
If you only have time for a short course, individual experts will spend a day showing you the ropes on either the Clark Fork or the Bitterroot River. My day with Land made me feel like an expert, and even when I flipped and fumbled my kayak, he patiently taught me to take my time and enjoy the beauty of nature.
Call Land at: 406-543-4583 or 503-260-7116, or check out the company at http://teamtarkio.com
If you are up for some mid-river adventure and the Tarkio crew is busy, contact the folks at Zoo Town Surfers at http://www.zootownsurfers.com The Zoo Town crowd takes to the waves in any temperature.
As Norman MaClean wrote, Missoula is a town where the "river runs through it". Here's your chance to test the waters for yourself.