Saturday, April 12, 2014

Paddling Lake Holt - First paddle of the 2014 season!

Location: Lake Holt, Butner, NC. Temperature: 78F Wind: Light Conditions: Sunny

Finally! The first paddle of the 2014 season for me occurred at 1:00 PM on Saturday, April 12. I had just gotten back from an exhausting week long business trip, and I was ready to unwind and relax! Rachel was recovering from a back injury and declined the paddle adventure. I decided to put in at Lake Holt, a short 20 minute drive from our house. Click on the photos to enlarge.

Put in at the Lake Holt boat ramp. The water levels were very high so that the majority of the ramp was submerged. I actually had to park my truck beyond the ramp, and "walk" my kayak down to the water's edge. Usually, the water levels are too low to pass to the right of the small island in the photo, but this trip I was able to easily paddle between the island and shoreline.

I spotted dozens of turtles sunning themselves on dead tree trunks by the water's edge.

The reptile's eyesight must be pretty good, because it is difficult to nearly impossible to paddle closer than 25 yards before they scuttle off, plop into the water, and disappear.

A snapping turtle. You really don't want to mistakenly step on this fellow!

I counted six turtles on this dead tree trunk.

The remains of a toppled tree trunk looks like a misshapen "monster" lurching out of the shallows.

Beautiful cloud formations drift over Lake Holt on a quiet spring afternoon.

A lone canoe, waits at the end of a dirt road, for folks ready for a paddling adventure.

A small gazebo. Looks like a great place to kick back, indulge in a cold beverage of choice, and contemplate life near the water.

I spotted this couple paddling on my return trip to the Lake Holt boat ramp.

Unfortunately, neither person is wearing a PFD. I spoke to the woman after I got back in, and learned that the couple had recently purchased these kayaks and were getting into the paddling sport. I hope that they will also remember to wear their PFDs at all times while on the water.

It was a great paddle on Lake Holt. But, aren't they all great when you can get out on the water?  I am thankful that I have several paddling areas that are located within 45 minutes of our house. To coin a famous movie line - "This looks like the start of a beautiful [paddling season]!" Until next time, remember to take life one stroke at a time.

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