Friday, April 25, 2008

Kayaking the Caddo

If this is the WINs, we must be kayaking. And last Tuesday, we did just that. We had an exciting six mile trip down the beautiful Caddo River. Previously, I had just kayaked calm rivers and peaceful lakes. This was different. I found out that I have absolutely no control over a kayak.

Here we are loading up the kayaks to take to the put in spot. Quite a system, don't you think? We had 18 of us on this paddle.

This is our friend and fellow WIN 'Maniac Mike' who kindly allows us to use his cargo trailer for this operation. The trailer usually holds his road toys - motorcycle, souped-up ATV, kayaks - and is pulled behind his motorhome. Mike is a great guy with a terrific sense of humor.

Here we are just starting down the river. As you can see, there are lots of rocks to navigate around.

And here I am demonstrating that special 'Barbara' style. (This and the previous two pictures were taken by Peggy. Thanks, Peggy.)

Back to the subject of my lack of control over my kayak. Soon after we began our paddle (and before this last picture was taken,) my boat sank right out from under me! Impossible, you think? Well, I was too close to the person in front of me as we were negotiating around some rocks. Suddenly she got turned sideways against a rock. What was I to do? Since I didn't have the control to go around her, I slammed on the brakes (dragged my paddle in the water) and ended up parallel to her. The current was so swift in this spot that it flattened my boat against the rock which caused it to be at a 45 degree sideways slant. As I watched helplessly, the water just poured into the boat until it was completely filled. Rather then sit in a boat full of water, I then just stepped out. (The water was only about a foot and a half deep.) Do you know how hard it is to move a kayak full of water? The good news is that my boat pushed hers farther up the rock and we were able to get it back on track. Then I just waited for my hero Ron to come and bail me out.

And here he is, still smiling at the end, after helping me and actually chasing down somebody else's kayak when it took off without them.

Ah, the tired, but happy adventurers waiting for their ride home.


  1. Glad I can live vicariously through your kayaking adventures, and I don't actually have to do it!

  2. Wish we were there but we had out own kayaking with the gators.

  3. Glad you are having fun in ark...I am with my friend in Branson now... later ----- Will

  4. Looks like a great river for paddling. I'll have to make a trip there to see it myself sometime!