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Sunday, April 11, 2021

Dumb, dumber, dumbest: 5 paddling faux pas

The right way to unload and inflate...away from vehicle lanes

A list of quick ways some discourteous folks can spoil…

…a beautiful day on the water. Kayakers, paddle boarders and canoeists are flocking to shorelines in record numbers this spring, But some of them know just how to pour cold water on what should be a nice day in a natural setting.

Warning: The following includes snark-castic commentary that may offend some. Probably the ones described herein. My top five examples of breaking bad on our waterways: 

Thursday, March 4, 2021

A darling destination for early spring kayaking

Airy pearls dot the surface of this foothills lake

Ask paddlers what they remember about Lake Clementine….

…and chances are good they will answer “bubbles.” Clementine blows bubbles like a Lawrence Welk rerun. These airy pearls rise through sparkling clear water from a muddy bottom.

Which has led me to speculate, on previous paddles, that the bubbles may be fish farts. Except that at no time have I ever seen a single fish at Clementine, either swimming or at the end of a line, though fishing is popular here. This had the makings of a good mystery until one of my paddle pals – a no-nonsense woman who once worked as a rocket company exec – said flatly, “It’s decaying matter.” Well, okay, but she’s never going to get an invite from QAnon with that attitude.

Paddling past "Robber's Roost"

Clementine, part of the Auburn State Recreation Area, is a great off- or early-season destination for kayakers, paddler boarders and canoeists. It’s usually quiet, almost too quiet. Except some years back, when my paddle pod came upon a forest fire in the making there.
    

A pair of bald eagles and their posse put on a show over "Robber's Roost"

Nicer surprises awaited on this trip in late February. Not halfway up the four-mile-long lake, two bald eagles soared around “Robber’s Roost,” a stagecoach bandit lookout point 

Monday, December 21, 2020

Picture this: Good times for paddling just ahead


Near the end of some long, tough paddles, it became a standing joke: “We’re almost there, it’s just around that next bend!” Sometimes it was, and sometimes it wasn’t, but it was always good for the moment. And so it can be now, as we find ourselves arriving at year's end. 

Given the turbulence of 2020, it’s easy to forget the good paddles we've had in the past. But in just a little while, one hopes, our troubles will be far away.  Meanwhile, here’s a photo album to recall some great times around the water, and inspire adventures in the New Year, as the fates allow. (Some iPhones may not open the album app, but it's better seen on a larger screen anyway.)

 © Glenn Brank 2020