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Top Places to Go Wakeboarding Near Los Angeles

Top Places to Go Wakeboarding Near Los Angeles

Your board is ready and you’re all set to ride—here’s where to go wakeboarding in and around Los Angeles.


5 min read

June 20, 2021

Does going on extreme adventures and livin’ la vida loca speak to you? Boy, you’re going to love wakeboarding in Southern California. This watersport is an extremely rewarding hobby that unlocks a whole new world of possibilities—it’s just like riding an endless wave. 

Wakeboarding is a combination of waterskiing, surfing, and snowboarding. Some prefer a laid-back experience, others are all about competitive vibes. Whichever you lean towards, you'll be glad to know that this sport can be picked up quicker than other water-related activities. And once you get the hang of it, you’re going to want to wakeboard all the time. 

Your board is ready and you’re all set to ride—here’s where to go wakeboarding in and around Los Angeles.

Wakeboarding was developed from a combination of water skiing, snowboarding, and surfing techniques.

Tips and Tricks to Keep in Mind Before Wakeboarding in California

Yes, we just said that learning to wakeboard isn’t as hard as taking up other watersports, but to be on the safe side, there are a few things to consider before you hit the water. 

  • Your board is probably going to swing around on launch, but that doesn’t mean you should stop it. Simply relax and just go with the flow—there’s no harm in keeping your board on its side when you’re already in the water.
  • The easiest way to swing to an upright position when wakeboarding is by keeping your arms on each side of your knees and squatting down as much as you can.
  • Wakeboarding requires you to place one of your feet forward, so make sure you get in a comfortable position. You may not believe this at first, but sometimes, switching your lead foot can dramatically change your ability to wakeboard.

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  • Pay attention to how much pressure you're putting on the board. Around half of your weight should lean on your front foot when you’re standing up on the board. The only time you need to shift your weight to your back foot is when you need to get up. 
  • We know you’re excited to start wakeboarding, but the key to learning it quickly is by taking it slow. As you’re launching, ensure that you go slow so it becomes easier for you to get up. Once you’re in the right position, signal the boat to go faster. 
  • Be prepared to run into sudden movement made by the boat—you're going to want to protect your face. 
  •  Last but not least, have fun. After all, wakeboarding is all about entertainment.


Awesome Places to Go Wakeboarding near Los Angeles

Castaic Lake is ideal for non-power boating, canoeing, swimming, jet skiing, fishing, and sailing, why not add wakeboarding to the list?

Castaic Lake

Ask any Angeleno and they’ll tell you Castaic Lake is where you go for any—and we mean any—water-related activities. And at this point, it shouldn’t be surprising that Castaic Lake is a top choice for wakeboarding in Southern California. Don your properly-fitting life vest and practice your skills on the water. You’re going to love taking on a challenge and learning the fastest-growing aquatic sport in the world at this reservoir. Be prepared to get fully soaked. 

Lake Elsinore

The second closest place to go wakeboarding near Los Angeles is Lake Elsinore. Drive south towards western Riverside County and you’ll arrive at this watersport hotspot. As the largest natural freshwater lake in Southern California, Lake Elsinore can get busy pretty quickly, so get ready to share the water. As you’re riding the waves on your board, you’ll notice hang-gliders, skydivers, and mountain bikers enlivening the lake. 

When wakeboarding gets too boring for you, you can easily spend the rest of your time water skiing, windsurfing, fishing, or sunbathing at Lake Elsinore. 

Pyramid Lake a hotspot for outdoor recreation and attracts thousands of visitors each year who soak up the sun and take in the lake's scenic beauty.

Pyramid Lake

Some people will tell you that Pyramid Lake is the place to go for largemouth bass and trout fishing. But what most people don’t know is that this reservoir is a popular place to go wakeboarding in California. Pyramid Lake encompasses 1,360 acres with a depth of 700 feet and 21 miles of shoreline, so you can only imagine how much fun you’ll have splashing around here. Soak up the SoCal sun and take in the lake’s scenic beauty while enjoying a smooth ride.

Lake Perris

If you’re driving in the opposite direction of Pyramid Lake, you’ll come across another California wakeboarding destination that’s only an hour away from Downtown L.A. As far as the best lakes in the state go, Perris Reservoir is as entertaining as it gets. Here, recreation is the name of the game. Besides wakeboarding, visitors are encouraged to explore the area on two wheels, picnicking along the shore, climbing the rocks overlooking the reservoir, as well as camping by the lake.  

The heelside backflip, otherwise known as a tantrum, is often regarded as the first and easiest invert to learn as an intermediate-level rider.

Canyon Lake

SoCal residents know that the best wakeboarding near Los Angeles is experienced at Canyon Lake. Not only is it coveted for being a fantastic water sports destination, but this has also made it prime real estate. For the most part, Canyon Lake is smooth when it comes to wakeboarding near Los Angeles. However, locals have built mansions and bought waterfront properties—peace and quiet is what they prefer hearing instead of powerboat engines. While the glimmering waters of Canyon Lake crave to be explored, you may want to think twice if you plan on wakeboarding all day.     

Mission Bay Aquatic Center

Head towards San Diego and drive for two hours to arrive at the coolest place to go wakeboarding in Southern California, which is Mission Bay Aquatic Center. As the world’s largest instructional waterfront facility, this watersport paradise is where you take your first steps in trying your luck at this activity. The center provides all-inclusive wakeboarding, wakesurfing, and waterskiing boat rentals by the hour with a U.S. Coast Guard licensed instructor operating the watercraft at all times. Once you get your much-needed dose of wakeboarding, take part in the kayaking, wakesurfing, and windsurfing lessons provided by Mission Bay Aquatic Center. 

Lake Havasu

Located on the border between California and Arizona, Lake Havasu attracts water sport enthusiasts from both states—around 3.7 million spring breakers and summer vacationers a year to be exact. The 45-mile long reservoir is formed by Parker Dam on the Colorado River and offers all the amenities you need for an exciting and comfortable wakeboarding experience. When you’re not showing off your skills on the board, you’ll most likely enjoy fishing, boating, camping, flyboarding, and hiking around the lake. While it’s not necessarily the closest wakeboarding spot near Los Angeles, Lake Havasu is certainly one of the best in SoCal. 

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