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Archive for 'boating'

Treacherous waterways of the Bay Area

Recently we were out canoeing on the Napa-Sonoma Marsh. The tide was very strong, however, and we got a good workout paddling against it. In fact, as we navigated one slough we saw signs that other boaters before us had been overpowered by the tides and succumbed, never to regain civilization. Above a ghostlike figure restlessly haunts a wrecked craft.

Of course, boaters have been washing up stranded and meeting grizzly ends all over the greater Bay Area — the captain of the vessel below, if he surveyed at all, must have been forced to wade out through the muck. Why are our waterways so treacherous?

Bay Area canoe and kayak put-in locations

For a handy map of canoe and kayak put-in locations around the Bay Area, check out gotoes.org. Happy paddling!

map of bay area canoe and kayak put-ins

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Great Blue Heron at Lafayette Reservoir

The Lafayette Reservoir is a pretty little lake of 115 acres. It’s a tame spot, much used by joggers, families, and dog walkers. An easy 4.7-mile trail loops around the lake from the parking area. The reservoir itself is not drained seasonally as many are, so it retains a natural-looking, reedy shoreline.

There is a book launch on the lake, but it’s restricted to boats that can be hand launched, and gas motors aren’t allowed. All-day parking is $6 and there is a $4 boat use fee. There are many picnic tables — 135, according to park literature — some of which can be accessed by boat. Last Friday we canoed over to this float and had a little picnic. The float was also accessible by trail, but most of the joggers and dog walkers are so focused on their circuit of the lake they rarely come down to the water.

floating picnic area, lafayette reservoir

It’s quiet on the water, and by boat you have access to things the joggers don’t see, like the great blue heron in the upper right of this photo.

canoe and heron on lafayette reservoir

Because canoes are the most maneuverable and quietest of water craft, it is possible for canoeists to get very close to wildlife.

great blue heron at lafayette reservoir

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Link:
Lafayette Reservoir at Bay Area Hiker
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