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Great ways to enjoy local waterways in warmer weather

Justin Hausner satisfies his kayak habit all year long, although he admits he’s not typical.

As co-owner of Fuzzy Guppies Human Powered Watercrafts in Waterloo, he has easy access to kayaks. Nearby Seneca Lake doesn’t freeze over in winter, so he doesn’t mind bundling up for some cold-water fishing aboard a kayak. But with summer right around the corner and warmer waterways ahead, Hausner will be one of many out on the lakes in kayaks, canoes and other non-motorized vessels.

Use of kayaks and similar watecrafts “have taken off like wildfire,” said Hausner, who owns Fuzzy Guppies with his dad, Norbert Hausner. Pedal kayaks, fishing kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards are a few of the hot items. Their shop between Seneca and Cayuga lakes, on the Seneca River, sees a lot of locals and tourists seeking all kinds of ways to fish, cruise the lakes, maneuver the creeks or meander through the locks of the Finger Lakes region.

Justin, who lives in Geneva, said Fuzzy Guppies delivers kayaks, canoes and similar watercraft rentals to places all across the region — including around Canandaigua Lake.

“There are some gorgeous launches there,” he said, mentioning West River at the south end and coves at the north end.

This summer, Canandaigua Lake will see the launch of its much-awaited Canandaigua Lake Water Trail. The trail for non-motorized watercrafts will pinpoint new and numerous public access sites along the lake’s 36 miles of shoreline. Along with launching sites for paddlers to put in and take out their boats, the trail will feature destinations for paddlers to stop, rest and explore, along with guidance for planning canoe and kayak excursions.

The trail will be a great addition for people looking to get the most out of enjoying the lake, said Valerie Knoblauch, president of the Finger Lakes Visitors Connection. Knoblauch, who has promoted the project since it first got off the ground several years ago, said outdoor adventure continues to gain in popularity. In particular, “there’s a desire to get out on the lake,” she said.

“We are very excited as this will help people organize how they go on the lake,” she said.

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