My Favorite Kayak Day Trip: Little Tybee Island

By Nigel Law, 02 June 2013

  • DATE

    02 June 2013


    Nigel Law



It seems the more I paddle, the less distance I travel. This is strange, because I was inspired to kayak through my love of travel. So these days grabbing a few hours of peace and solace in the old baidarka invariably means ‘going surfing,’ and the best place to surf a sea kayak here on the south Georgia coast is at our local ebb tidal delta.

Located at the south end of Tybee Island, Georgia – and otherwise known as ‘The Triangle’, this is a fascinating area that exemplifies the geo morphology of the SE bight. A delta commonly refers to a landmass at the mouth of a river, or in this case, an inlet. The ebb part means the land mass forms on the falling tide, on the ocean side of the inlet.  Numerous ebb tide deltas make up the character of our coast and prove exceptional foraging and rest areas for migratory birds as well as being an exciting and challenging sea paddlers’ playground. The Triangle is the most famous of these ETDs, and this is how we day trip, play trip it.

Launching from Alley #3 onto Tybee Creek, about an hour after high, head south along the Tybee shore towards the ocean.  At the southern tip of Tybee you have a lot of ebb current, some wave trains and great unidirectional waves. Not only is it a great play spot, but there is also a good chance of spotting large marine life. Dolphin, shark and sea turtle encounters are not unusual.  Heading south and westerly towards Little Tybee will take you across the outer edge of The Triangle. Zig-zagging in and out will make full advantage of cleaner, outside sets and.  the multidirectional waves around the now developing sandbars of the delta.  Experience more current and waves on the south side of the triangle, before  landing on Little Tybee, the perfect picnic spot. Surfing the forest fringed coastline of Little Tybee is one of the great pleasures of living here. With warm waters, beautiful empty beaches with a lush maritime forest, one is landing in paradise. As the tide goes slack and the surf abates, paddle back up the west side of Tybee Creek to where you put in.  5 hrs, including lunch.  Expect breaking waves of 3 feet, confused seas and strong currents. Check wind and swell reports for more or less challenging conditions.

OR gear used on this trip:

Radiant LT Zip Top [LINK]

Radiant Hybrid Tights [LINK]

Dry Peak Bagger [LINK]

Durable Dry Sack [LINK]

Water Bottle Parka [LINK]

Nigel Law

Savannah, GA

I moved to Savannah 12 years ago to put the Georgia coast at my paddling disposal. The 14-ocean fringed primary barrier islands are my favorite aspect of living here, and I visit them one or two at a time, whenever the window of opportunity arises. I sometimes drive up and down the coast, to Florida and North Carolina on spontaneous surf kayaking trips.

Aside from keeping a gear shop, I guide heavily for three seasons of the year. From the infamous three-hour tour to multiday excursions, for girl scouts, college kids, family reunions, businessmen, tourists and local paddlers alike, I paddle the coastal waters constantly.

From time to time, I exit the madness of this first world in exchange for the madness of the third world, on which occasions I like to travel self contained…. boats and camping gear stowed in the hold. I am fortunate to have an enabler for a wife. Her name is Kristin and together we are paddling bums… living, breathing , working our kayaks and our gear to the bone.​