Sunday, July 28, 2013

Return to Flat Creek after a four year absence!

Location: Flat Creek, Henderson, NC.  Temperature: 85F Wind: Light  Conditions: Partly sunny

One paddle a weekend is never enough! Rachel came up with an idea of paddling after church services on Sunday! My reaction - but of course!  ;-) I decided to re-visit (for Rachel it was her first time) Flat Creek located in Henderson, NC. The last time I had paddled on  Flat Creek was back in November 2009! Church ended around 12 noon, so we grabbed a quick bite of lunch and by 1:00 PM I was nosing my truck with kayak into the Williamsboro Wayside parking lot next to Flat Creek. Click on the photos to enlarge.


Rachel, in her customary front seat. She leads, and I follow! ;-)


It was partly sunny day with a slight threat of afternoon showers. I was glad for the cloud cover since it helped reduce some of the afternoon heat.


Rachel and I paddled by several "butterfly bushes" that had dozen of butterflies flitting around.





Flat Creek boasts many grand homes complete with both individual and community boat docks.


A "two-boat" house with jet ski and motor skiff .


There were several skiers and pontoon boats towing rafts plying the waters of Flat Creek. Rachel and I kept a vigilant eye on the speeding water craft while we hugged the shoreline.


Like clockwork, the "slight chance" of rain showers went to 100% chance! Thankfully, no thunder or lightening accompanied the gentle down pour. The rain turned out to be more spotty showers than an all afternoon event. Besides, the rain helped cool us down from our paddling and was welcomed!


We spotted two heron - both tree bound and difficult to see among the tree foliage.





One captain's "vision" of a pontoon boat? Looks like the intrepid individual decided it was better to have a "mobile" dock, complete with grill, than the boring old fashioned kind that normally don't move!


Showers have passed with the promise of a beautiful day on Flat Creek.


Rachel and I had a great time paddling on Flat Creek. It was fun to introduce her to this "new" body of water and for me to re-discover it for myself!


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Friday, July 26, 2013

Another fun paddling adventure at Beaver Dam Lake!

  Location: Beaver Dam Lake, Wake County, NC.  Temperature: 83F Wind: Light  Conditions: Partly sunny

Friday morning found me "slaving away" at my job, but I was distracted by the beautiful day and wondering how I was going to get in a paddle adventure for the weekend. Than a brilliant idea struck me! Why not start my weekend early and do some paddling on Friday? A quick note to my boss and co-workers that I "needed" to take a half day off on Friday and by noon I was closing up my laptop and loading my kayak into my truck! By 1:30 PM I was driving through the park gates and a little before 2:00 PM, I found myself putting in at one of my all time favorite paddling spots - Beaver Dam Lake! Click on the photos to enlarge.

 It was a partially sunny day with a slight wind and little current on the lake. Except for a couple of fishermen I spotted in the distance, I had Beaver Dam Lake to myself!


Spotted a couple of blue herons. This heron calmly watched me from his perch about 20 feet above the lake waters.


This heron was too busy wading along the shoreline and looking for its next meal to pay much attention to a small yellow kayak paddling in the cove.


Beautiful symmetry on display with this flower.


A turtle basking in the sunlight, on a dead log. Seconds after taking this photo, it plopped into the muddy water and disappeared from sight.


A huge cocoon with its webbing encompassing several tree branches. Wonder what is inside?


The answer! Hundreds of caterpillars waiting to break out and wreck havoc on the world! Hopefully, many of these little guys will find themselves becoming "fish food."


One of two fishing and observation platforms at Beaver Dam Lake.


The "skinnies." A forest of tall and skinny pine trees.


Here's one way to paddle a SUP. This fellow stayed on his belly for his entire paddle. Guess he had an  upper body and arm workout going on?


Gorgeous view from a quiet cove on Beaver Dam Lake.

I had a wonderful and relaxing time at Beaver Dam Lake! It had been a while since I had been paddling and it sure felt "right" to be back on the water! Until next time. And remember, to always take life one stroke at a time!


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Saturday, July 6, 2013

July 4th Weekend Paddle at Beaver Dam Lake!

  Location: Beaver Dam Lake, Wake County, NC.  Temperature: 78F Wind: Light  Conditions: Partly sunny

Rachel and I decided to get in a paddle at one of our favorite sites - Beaver Dam Lake over the long July 4th holiday weekend. We went for a mid-morning put in to avoid both the heat and holiday crowds. Click on the photos to enlarge.

 Lots of water craft line the shore. A canoe, sit-on-top kayak, 3 Coleman stand up paddle boards (SUPs), and our tandem Mainstream Escapade kayak in the foreground.


A turtle sunning it self on a dead tree.


Sun peering through the trees and foliage as we paddle in a quiet cove.


"Water strider" insects that "walk" (stride) across on the water surface. Click on the photo to enlarge and you can see that their legs are suspended on the water surface.


Gorgeous cloud formations that billowed hundreds of feet in the air above Beaver Dam Lake.











Trees basking in the sunlight.


Looking out from a peaceful cove.


Here's how NOT to use SUPs and kayaks. Nobody is wearing PFDs except for the kid lying down in the bow of the SUP on the left.  In fact, the PFDs are on the SUP decks where they will be useless in an emergency. The fellow with the white hat, is wearing street shoes and socks. The guy in the kayak has on jeans and a t-shirt. Thankfully, the water temperatures are warm and they are not far from the shoreline.  


A woodpecker clinging onto a dead tree.


Remarkably close up photo of a blue heron. The bird stayed perched on the tree limb the entire time I was taking photographs.


Rachel and I enjoyed a relaxing and fun paddle at Beaver Dam Lake. We went early, avoided both the heat and holiday crowds, and got in some good upper body workout. Hope to return soon to the lake!



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