Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Upcoming Tours and Events

As summer winds down I'm looking forward to paddling my favorite time of year, fall. We have some great tours coming up so be sure to check our calendar.

 If you haven't seen the full moon rise over the Delta you should sign up for our moonlight paddle which is scheduled for September 8th. It's an experience you won't forget.

We'll be spending time on the water cleaning up the Delta for Coastal Cleanup day September 20th. Grab your boat and gear and be sure to join us! Delta Kayak Adventures will be providing kayaks for a minimal charge to help cover costs associated with transporting and launching. We also have a special cleanup planned for Antioch on the 19th of September where we'll be providing kayaks free of charge. We only have a couple spots left for the Antioch cleanup but we'll create a waiting list in case someone cancels. If you have your own boat contact us for more info.

September 21st we'll be paddling one of my favorite spots - Steamboat and Sutter Slough in the heart of the Delta. The following week we will explore the Cosumnes River Preserve which is another must see location!

We are also planning a day of kayak fishing on the Delta and an Intro to Kayaking class so check our site often.

Those are just a few of the tours we have planned for September and as always, you can request a custom tour for your group.

Happy paddling!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Miner Slough

Did a little exploring today with a friend of mine. It's been awhile since I've had the opportunity to get out and discover new paddling destinations and it felt great to be back in my Whisky! We launched just north of Rio Vista at 10:15 a.m. and paddled north on Cache Slough also known as the deepwater shipping channel that leads to Sacramento. High tide was predicted to be almost 3 ft. at 12:23 and the winds were forecast to be under 10 mph. The wind was actually blowing at least 10-15 mph out of the northwest with 20 mph gusts which made for a lively paddle the first 4 miles but we had a good current pushing us north so we covered those first 4 miles in under an hour.

I have to say the paddle from Rio Vista to the entrance of Miner slough is pretty boring as far as scenery goes but once you enter Miner slough it makes it all worth while. Miner slough is located east of the shipping channel and there are a couple of possible entrances. We chose the northernmost entrance and paddled slowly taking in the scenery. This area is very remote and both sides of the slough are covered with cottonwoods, eucalyptus trees and tons of blackberry bushes.

Within a mile of entering the slough we came upon an opening among the brush and trees. We peeked through the opening and saw heavy equipment, tractors, a trailer, patio boat and other items strewn about with some items submerged. We did a little poking around in this flooded area of Prospect Island but didn't stay too long as there was an eerie feeling about the place. Upon further research I discovered that this area was the site of a massive fish kill back in 2007. After a levy break the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation went in to repair the levy and while pumping out the water ended up stranding thousands of Stripers and other fish that call the Delta home. I guess they abandoned the repair project and left it as they found it.

We continued north and soon spotted dozens of huge palm trees and another entrance to a lagoon. I would love to find out more info about what used to be here as it looks like a beautiful spot and could have possibly been a resort some time ago. By the time we finished exploring this little area it was just after noon and we were starting to get hungry so we continued our journey north keeping an eye out for possible spots to get out and stretch. After a mile or so we couldn't find any suitable spots to get out but we did find a nice shady area under a canopy of trees so we rafted up and ate lunch.

We were hoping to make it to Arrowhead Marina but it was getting late and I began to worry about what the wind would be like back on the deepwater channel. We turned around about a mile shy of our destination which makes for a great excuse to get back out there. We paddled with determination back to Cache slough only to find it just as calm as Miner slough. That was a great relief and we were able to relax and float with the outgoing tide back to the put- in.

We ended up kayaking almost 15 miles for a great workout. The only downside was being in our boats for 5 hours without being able to get out and stretch. We'll be heading out there during a low tide to see if there are any hidden beaches that would make good rest stops. We didn't see much wildlife today unless you count bass fisherman. It was another awesome day on the Delta!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Paddling & Kayak Fishing Lake Mildred

I've spent the past week with my kids paddling and fishing Lake Mildred in the Sierra foothills. Lake Mildred is a 120 acre lake located within the Thousand Trails preserve, Lake of the Springs in Oregon House California. The first four days we paddled early in the morning and fished in the evening to avoid the 100 plus degree heat. The fishing wasn't great but it was a lot of fun and I did land a total of five fish including 3 small smallmouth bass and 2 good size crappie. My daughter ended up with 4 small bluegill which she caught from the dock.

Thousand Trails used to be a member only campground system but it is now open to the public. At Lake of the Springs you must camp at least one night to access Lake Mildred. There are endless outdoor opportunities in this area whether you like to paddle, fish, bike or hike. Within a 10 mile radius you can explore Bullards Bar and/or Collins Lake.  Bullards Bar is a huge emerald green lake that is well known for houseboating and fishing. Collins Lake has a great reputation for fishing and you can't beat their ice cream!  If you prefer moving water, the Yuba River is only a 20 minute drive from the preserve but do your homework before paddling the Yuba as there are many dams that create deadly hazards for those unprepared.

Due to the severe drought, water levels are very low at both Bullards Bar and Collins Lake but full enough to enjoy your time on the water. Lake Mildred is down about 15 feet from last year. I didn't get a chance to check out the Yuba River but according to the California Department of Water Resources the river is running just above 800 CFS near Marysville as of August 7th.

As summer winds down, I'll be scouting more of the eastern and southern Delta region. I'll be posting more "Wednesday Wanderings" where you'll have the chance to join me in these explorations.

Happy paddling!