“Spend as much time as possible on mountains, in small boats, or otherwise out in the weather; if you never get wet, cold, exhausted or scared, you won’t properly appreciate being dry, warm, rested and safe.” ~ Peter Jay

"I’m an adventuring river rat at heart. Put me on a floating piece of driftwood and I’m happy." ~ Christina Glauner

"There’s folly and foolhardiness on one side and daring and calculation on the other." ~ C.S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower novels

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Storm's Crossing

Yesterday was beautiful, little wind and temperature in the 80s or low 90s. I decided to go for a short paddle. I put in at the Farm Island boat ramp near the polo field. This is a seldom used boat ramp, because there is no dock and the water is fairly shallow near it. Typically, I only see people shore fishing from it and on occasion I will see a john boat launching from it. I understand that catfish are common in the vicinity.
I decided to paddle upstream to a little creek that is always difficult to find when heading upstream. It is hidden by the vegetation at the mouth, but can be easily spotted when heading downstream. The Lewis and Clark trail in Pierre crosses it and there is a sign at the crossing/bridge labeling it as Storm's Crossing. I recall that it is named for a fallen SD soldier; I can't remember any specifics.
I did manage to miss the creek on my way upstream, but I found it after I gave up and started back downstream. I proceeded up the creek the short distance to the bridge. I had to push a few logs out of the way with the bow of my kayak to reach the bridge. It is not possible to get beyond the bridge. I then headed back to the Farm Island boat ramp (polo fields). After loading my gear/boat, I stopped at the polo fields to give Chuck heck about choosing to fly his RC planes over kayaking.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Farm Island and Sails

Chuck and I went paddling this afternoon at Farm Island. We met at what is known as the boater's beach, which is near the main boat ramp. We paddled down to the entrance into the fingers/inlets into the interior of the island. We went up two of the fingers before heading back to the beach. Chuck used his sail a bit on the way down to the entrance and on the way out of the fingers. The water was very high and I did not notice near as many carp as the last time I was in the fingers. We ended up covering about 5.4 miles.

Rough Water

Saturday was Andy's, my college roommate's, last full day visiting me. The wind was blowing a little harder and there was a chance of storms all day. We decided to borrow Chuck's Temptest for Andy to try and just paddle around the beach area of Oahe Downstream. Right away I had Andy out surfing in the rough water, but when we took a reprieve near the beach Andy had trouble getting the Temptest to turn to go back out into the rough water. We tried switching boats and it helped some, but we decided that he just needs a little more experience before trying a longer boat in rough water. The Temptest reminded me why I dislike it; I could barely get out of it, my feet were so numb!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Sharing La Framboise

On Friday, Andy (my college roommate) and I went paddling with Dave Pfahler around La Framboise Island. Nothing too spectacular, just a routine cruise. The water level was very high though. Pretty much the whole dam/dike is underwater. I am also sharing a picture I took in Griffin Park. There is a RV club around town this weekend and it seems a lot of the members also have boats. I kind of liked how this one RV carried a kayak.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Oahe Days and Bad River

My roommate from college had some vacation time to use or lose, so he decided to come up to Pierre for Oahe Days and to hang around for a week or so. On Saturday, we took in the free picnic at the Capital for the 100th anniversary of the Capital Building. There was roast beef and pork sandwiches, chips, cookies, and water. I then took him down to the river to give him some experience in a kayak before we tried a cruise. We just dinked about between Dump Island and the causeway. Came across numerous people I knew. We saw Chuck crashing his planes on shore, a coworker of mine tried unsuccessfully to enter his boat stereo into a car stereo contest... he would have won, in my opinion. And we also came across some friends of mine at the beach playing floating beer pong.

From 2010-06-20

On Sunday, I decided to take him up the Bad River. Apparently, the point John Adler and I made it too last summer/fall is the furthest point possible. The water seemed higher yesterday than last year, but we made it about the same distance. We pushed about 3.5 miles up, totaling 7 miles for the cruise.

From 2010-06-20
From 2010-06-20

Sunday, June 13, 2010

La Framboise Loop & Capital Creek

It was a dreary day today, but since there was no T-storms Chuck and I decided to go paddling. We met at the causeway at 1 PM. I was paddling the Storm GT and Chuck brought down his WS Northstar tandem. His girlfriend, Diana, was in town this weekend. Nothing too special, just a quick circumnavigation of La Framboise Island. The water level was high today, both boats made it over the dike structure without touching it. We also skirted up Capital Creek to the box culvert underneath a road through Griffen Park. Total distance was 5.9 miles.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Into Farm Island... Beware of Carp!

Today, I went out to what is called the boater's beach at Farm Island State Recreation Area. It is a sandy beach behind the East Campground (separate from the swim beach). Launching from the boater's beach, I headed downstream towards the channels into the interior of Farm Island. It is about 1.25 miles down to the point of entry. Once in, I took the time to explore all 4 fingers of the interior. I have done this numerous times, so nothing too surprising occurred. Numerous small birds were about. What I believe are carp always seem numerous in the channels, but today there seemed to be a greater than normal population. There were points where I could see dozens of fins sticking above the water and there were splashes all along the channels as I passed by. A few even splashed close enough to get water on my spray skirt! I covered 6.5 miles on today's outing. Quite a few pictures in the slideshow below. I had the interval shooting set to 45 seconds. One minute, thirty seconds is appearing to be a better setting for shorter outings.

SDCKA Paddling Fair

I don't have too much to share, but yesterday I moseyed down to Sioux Falls for the SDCKA paddling fair at Family Park, near the intersection of 12th St. and Tea-Ellis Rd. I used the trip to also visit a friend in Mitchell and drop off a few things at my sister's new apartment in Sioux Falls. I even stopped over at Ribfest after the event for a bite to eat.
Seems like we only had 7 or 8 non-paddlers show up to try out boats. The fact that it had been raining right up to the start of the event could be partially to blame. We did have plenty of paddlers wanting to try different boats though, so the even was a success. It seemed to me that my Current Designs Storm GT was hit. I saw a handful of people take it out for a spin. Actually, I never even took it out! I did take my dog, Indy, out in my tandem. He behaved quite well. Later on, I even took a KDLT cameraman out so he could get some better shots. We had news coverage from both KDLT and KELO. I caught video clips on both stations on the 10:00 PM news, but the online articles do not include the video clips.
After the event, I headed over to the Sioux Falls Arena to checkout Ribfest. I was not there too long, maybe 45 minutes. In hindsight, I probably should have stayed the night in Sioux Falls to more thoroughly enjoy Ribfest, maybe next year...

From 2010-06-05

From 2010-06-05