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Fun On the Water

Pedal Away Your Day on the Guadalupe River

Article by Jessi Edison

Photography by Jessi Edison

Originally published in Boerne Lifestyle

Nestled along the Guadalupe River in Kerrville, Texas lies an adventure everyone should add to their summer bucket list. Located at the Knapp Boat Dock, you will find Hill Country River Rat. Owner, Captain James Wright, has created a one-of-a-kind pedal and electric solar boat to cruise down the Guadalupe River. You’ll climb aboard a 12-passenger pedal boat with your best pals and the fun will just be beginning. This is an experience you won’t want to miss. 

You’ve probably seen the cycling pub crawls go through bustling downtown cities, stopping at the hippest bars, grabbing a drink and hopping back on to pedal to the next location. But imagine that taking place on a boat and not having to hop off, while also plunging to cool off in the refreshing Guadalupe River. This was Wright’s inspiration behind the floating social cruise. You’ll embark on a two-hour cruise down the river in a boat powered by you. But don’t worry, this isn’t a workout in the least. You’re encouraged to bring drinks, food, music for the speakers provided, tubes for floating and most importantly, your party hat. This is the best way you’ll spend your time for any event. Captain Wright has hosted bachelorette parties, birthdays, family reunions and team-building events. This is a family-friendly boat, or maybe you’re looking to hire that sitter and get out with just the adults. You name it, this boat is an endless party for everyone.

Aside from the fun you’ll have, you’ll be blown away by the beauty around you. Diving into the river is fun, but you can also float along in inner tubes to give the river a more relaxing twist. The Hill Country will put on a show on the river with towering trees, rolling hills, and beautiful sunsets. You won’t want to miss taking a moment to admire your surroundings. 

Captain Wright has an interesting and inspiring story of how he got this pedal boat on the Guadalupe. In 2017, he was working on purchasing three pedal boats in St. John’s. That’s when Hurricane Irma hit the island and he quickly decided against the idea. It was much too risky and costly, but he still wanted to see this concept come to life. While sitting at a restaurant overlooking the Guadalupe, he had a thought. He noticed a particular portion of the river was not being used and quickly began creating and building his first pedal boat. This boat took him two years to construct. Getting the boats to pass through the city council brought another challenge, but a fun cruise on the river in the captain's new boat changed their minds. They were sold by one entertaining trip on the water. In April 2022 Hill Country River Rats' first cruise took place. Wright’s main goal is that every person that enters his boat has a fun-filled time, and he definitely delivers. His heart for this company and the people that venture out for a ride shows through his attention to detail and kind nature. 

Whether you’re still pondering what to add to that summer bucket list, or maybe you’re already checking things off, you’ll want to be sure to add River Rats to that list!

For more information, photos, questions and a way to contact Captain Wright, visit their website, hillcountryriverrat.com. Be sure to tell him the family at Boerne City Lifestyle says hello.

The Hill Country will put on a show on the river with towering trees, rolling hills, and beautiful sunsets.

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