Thursday, July 9, 2009

CANOEING CALDERWOOD LAKE

click pictures to enlarge full page The thunder is occurring about every five minutes now. The spaces between the claps are diminishing. Loud thunder! I doubt I can make it back to the Calderwood camp ground before the rain. Ha; who cares? I noticed a narrow cove as I paddled along the North embankment of the lake. Of course I had to investigate. A distant roar could be heard, and it grew more audible as we proceeded in that direction. There, in front of us, was a large mountain stream crashing into the narrow channel. It meandered from who knows where, coursing into and over boulders the length of it creating many water falls prior its entry into Calderwood. What a sight! I don't care if I don't take another picture today, for nothing on this lake could be this pretty. I am moving around from boulder to boulder as I write this. Each temporary stop offers a new vista; a new view of the scene. The sky is growing dark and I am reluctant to leave this beautiful place. I wonder how many more places exist similar to this one? I guess the search for them is the motivating force that keeps me in the field. You might notice the canoe is tied to a tree and left floating. There is no place to pull it onto shore, unless I drag it over rocks; and I'll not do that. Tools of the trade; whatever that really means. Its all in the bag. This brings to mind the problem of camping. Calderwood is a very difficult place to pitch a tent. One may as well pitch his tent in the trunk of the car and leave it there. I have been investigating hammocks. These are not the garden variety. These are hammock tents that are suspended off the ground between two trees or anything the ends can be secured to. I'll try to insert a couple photos of what I'm talking about. The one I really like is the Clark hammock. Wow! I could hang right out over the water with this baby. Swing in the wind and listen to the rain belting against the rain fly. HoooBoy! Anyway, all that's needed are two trees. Calderwood is eager to please with that request. Look at the size of this underwater boulder. Man! The water is crystal clear. Calderwood is continuously fed cold water from mountain streams and underwater springs. I came prepared to take pictures of kingfishers, but have only seen one at the entrance to this cove. But then, I'm not seeing any birds at all. Dumb me! The birds know a storm is brewing and are holed up. I, the human, am acting idiotic by sitting here and ignoring cautionary warnings sent by nature. I stopped and investigated another newly installed camp site. I'm not sure who is providing these sites. They are official because its obvious they are expensive, as top quality surrounds all aspects of the construction. I tethered the canoe and climbed up the cliff for a better inspection. aThis camp spot is really high up on the cliff. The views are great from here though. A little more writing and a couple more photos and I better move on. The storm is getting close and I've been on the water for over four hours. Sure is getting dark. This is not a wide lake and it does not concern me as much as the monster lakes I'm used to down in the valley. I can paddle to the shore line here if it gets scary. Come on Hap; get in the boat. Got a long paddle ahead of us. No, No, Happy, get your feet off the edge of the boat. Oh man! Too much weight, too suddenly. Oh Happy! Around this next corner to the right and a long strait paddle to the campground and the truck. I hope you enjoyed a few hours on Calderwood lake. I savored the time there.