No wakeboarder worth their salt can ignore visiting the best wakeboarding lakes in Florida, period.
Florida is a great place to visit for a lot of reasons. It has great weather and a lot of water surface. Consequently, this means that it’s one of the better destinations for wakeboarding enthusiasts, and with so many lakes to choose from, it can be a bit hard to decide on which one is the best.
In this article, we’ll be listing the best wakeboarding lakes in Florida. No matter which one you pick from this list, you will have a great wakeboarding session. And now, without further ado, here are seven of the best wakeboarding lakes in Florida.
Best Wakeboarding Lakes in Florida
Lake Pickett is somewhat of a hidden treasure for wakeboarders. It offers some of the best wakeboarding conditions you can get in Florida. It’s deep, wide, and, most importantly, protected from the wind. If that isn’t enough to win you over, it also has breathtaking scenery. Due to the acres of commercial orange groves and wildlife that’s around the area, there are very few residents, so it isn’t crowded by any means.
Lake Pickett is also where a lot of great and iconic wakeboarding tricks and techniques were invented. Gator Lutgert and Scott Byerly, two prominent figures in the sport, were also patrons of this lake. Lake Pickett is truly one of the best wakeboarding lakes in Florida, if not the best.
If you’re looking to practice the sport among the greats, Lake Jessamine is a great place to visit. Some of its patrons include Harley Clifford, Meagan Ethell, Mike Dowdy, Cory Teunissen, as well as several other great talents.
While the lake is as beautiful as its name, it’s still a bit rough. This is mainly due to the windy conditions it has as well as the wildlife that can pose a danger to the riders. Thankfully, it’s well-maintained, and you’ll always find a group of people who are making sure the lake offers good conditions for riding no matter how windy it gets.
While this is one of the smaller lakes on this list, it’s still worthwhile to place to go wakeboarding in. Its size doesn’t really pose any issue since it’s a quiet place with very few boats around. This means that you can go wakeboarding any time you want, and you’ll rarely find more than a couple of boats.
Another great thing about Lake Holden is how glassy its water is. The fact that this is one of the best wakeboarding lakes in Florida despite its relatively small size speaks volumes of the lake’s other qualities. You can always count on Lake Holden if you’re looking for a quiet place to have a wakeboarding session in.
If you’ve been following the pro scene of wakeboarding, then you probably already know that Suwannee River is a several-year host of the Rockstar Wakeskate Pro tour. If you want to ride where the greatest talents of the sports have ridden, then Suwannee River is a prime wakeboarding destination.
Also known as The Hood, Clear Lake is close to where a lot of pro riders live. Some of these talents include Sane Bonifay, Jeff Langley, Tony Carroll, and various other pro riders. The lake holds great value and is an iconic place in the wakeboarding culture.
This is because it was where a lot of legendary tricks were performed, and events were recorded throughout the history of the sport. It has a gated boat launch, which means that it’s not easy for everyone to get their boats in the lake.
With that said, if you’re going to Clear Lake to have a wakeboarding session when it gets dark, it’s recommended that you don’t stray too far from where the cops usually patrol to avoid any danger.
Blue Lake was a featured backdrop for Danny Harf’s wakeboarding video, “Defy.” To give some context, Danny Harf is an X Games Gold Medalist. After he had featured this lake, it immediately became a popular destination for a lot of wakeboarders from all around the country.
With that said, Blue Lake is suspected to be an owned land, which means that it might be risky to go there since you’d be trespassing. However, this hasn’t stopped a lot of wakeboarders from secretly going there.
Lake Conway is one of the larger lakes on this list. It’s also home to Steel Lafferty, Tony Iaconni, as well as Gunner Daft. One of the lake’s biggest strengths is how large it is. This means that there’s usually more than enough space to go for everyone. However, it can get a bit too crowded during the weekends. This is mainly due to it being a party lake that is open to the public. This means that anyone can go in with their own personal watercraft.
However, if you choose to during the week, then you can have the lake for yourself without any issue. Simply put, Lake Conway’s size makes it stand out from the other lakes in Florida.
Orlando, Florida: The Capital of Wakeboarding in the World
It’s reasonable to wonder why California is not considered the capital of wakeboarding, especially since it’s basically the birthplace of the sport. With that said, Orlando, Florida, offers ideal conditions for wakeboarding, which means that if you’re planning on getting to an advanced level, then it might be better to practice in the lake of Orlando, Florida, rather than California.
Orlando, Florida, is home to a lot of pro riders, and it’s for a good reason. Living in a place that allows you to practice wakeboarding all year round is a game-changer. It also explains why so many staple wakeboarding tricks and techniques have been performed there.
Additionally, Orlando, Florida, has an overabundance of lakes, which makes it even better as a wakeboarding destination. Florida actually has over 30,000 lakes spanning more than 3 million acres of land. This means that there more than enough space for everyone there to practice wakeboarding. As you’ve read in this article, there are plenty of amazing lakes to go to and practice, such as Lake Pickett, Lake Holden, Lake Conway, and many more.
Last but not least, Orlando, Florida, is where most major wakeboarding tournaments take place. In 2018 alone, 10 of the 15 (two thirds!) of the pro events that took place in the U.S. were hosted in Orlando, Florida.
All in all, Florida is where most of the sport’s events take place, and while wakeboarding first appeared in California, Florida is where it’s prospering the most and where most of the sport’s talents are going, and that’s why you should explore our list of the Best wakeboarding lakes in Florida.
Best Wakeboarding Lakes in Florida: Tips and Tricks
If you’re new to the sport, there are some things that you need to keep in mind before you go out and have your wakeboarding session. Here are some tips and tricks that will help you improve and avoid unnecessary accidents and mistakes.
Use a Spotter
One of the first things you should always have is a designated spotter. This also applies to any kind of water sport out there. Being aware of your surroundings and keeping good visibility is crucial and can help you avoid painful accidents.
Put Your Strong Foot Forward
If you’re new to wakeboarding and you don’t know which foot to put in front of the other, the answer is quite simple. It’s pretty much like surfing or skating. The foot you put in the back should be your strong foot. The one you use to kick with when you play soccer.
Use a Beginner Stance
Your stance is the determining factor of whether or not you’ll be able to maintain your balance during motion. The easiest stance to get into is the beginner stance, which should make your time on the board relatively easier.
To get into the beginner stance, you need to place the back binding far back and keep it aligned at zero degrees. This means that you’ll be pressing the direction on the top of the rear fin. As for the front binding, it should be angled at 15 to 27 degrees towards the front of the wakeboard.
Wakeboarding accidents can incur some serious injuries, especially if you’re ill-prepared. In order to avoid any misfortune, it’s highly recommended that you invest in the proper safety equipment. First and foremost, you’ll need to wear a lifejacket since you’ll always be in the water, and that’s where you’ll find yourself in case you fall.
If you’re a beginner and you’re finding it difficult to get up and out of the water, then it’s recommended that you use a shorter rope, which is usually between 30 and 50 feet in length.