Oh yes – we left Cooter’s Pond at about 0630 and the destination that night was a wilderness campsite about 19 miles away.
Now, I just started kayaking last Oct taking lessons with Jen and Jake over at Aqua Adventures in SandyEggo and I followed that the very next weekend with a trip from Willow Beach on the CO River north towards Hoover Dam – which does no suck.
That is only about 8 miles and since they were releasing water from the dam, I figure it felt like about 15 on flat water. That was actually a pretty good comparison.
We had a pretty uneventful day paddling – good views, good scenery, great conversations and even some quiet reflective time when we just paddled.
I don’t recall the time but we covered that 19 miles in a fairly short order and when it came to the sandbar under consideration, the water was simply too high so we started thinking about alternatives.
Now, this part of the river is fairly popular – there are plenty o’ boats and homes spread out but we knew that finding a good spot wouldn’t be impossible.
I spotted a couple of pontoon boats tied up to our left and Richard and I decided to see if we could stay there. There were no signs of a home that we could see – but it was obvious that it was someone’s spot to hang out during the day.
At one point, I decided it might not be a good idea but Richard said, “Hell, the worst thing they can say is “No”!” so on we paddled.
“Mike” met us at the water and being an ex-Vietnam vet, he and Richard hit it off and we were quickly made to feel at home. We were offered cold drinks, water, pork barbeque, wiskey – everything but a couple of young blonds. We were given permission to camp there and they even offered to go fetch anything we needed.
Richard, being part fish, even swam across the river (my guess about 125 yards wide) with one guy’s wife and back again! Yep – that’s after paddling 19 miles.
I’m telling you, we swapped stories, jokes, drinks – it was true southern hospitality at its finest.
One guy talked about surviving an ultralight plane crash and then he offered to find us on the river and take pictures as he flew over.
From the camp the next morning:
Smooth, early morning waters!