Friday, June 28, 2013

North Lake Conroe: Western Shore

As I shoved off from the ramp at the Cagle Recreation Area, the sun was rising above the treeline and a light mist was still floating just above the surface of the lake.

I've paddled most of the area north toward Wildwood Shores and Stubblefield Lake before, so the plan for the day was to explore the western shore south of Cagle.

As I paddled west, I soon entered an area of the lake that's filled with old tree stumps with their heads just barely above the water at this level. As I passed among them, slowly and quietly, I startled a number of fish and turtles that were nibbling on the plants that were growing among their roots.

Once I reached the western shore, I turned south and started hugging the shore line and listening to the sounds of the Sam Houston National Forest coming alive. Great egrets and great blue herons were staring hopefully into she shallow waters and a vulture who had already found his breakfast was dining happily on a small sandy beach.

As I explored the one little inlet I spotted a beaver lodge, but it seemed no one was home. In another I ran across a doe and fawn browsing by the water side. Cattails waved in the gentle breeze at the mouth of a little creek which flows into the lake during wetter times. The sounds of woodpeckers and other birds carried across the water from the forest.

As the sun grew warm and my stomach grew empty, I doubled back to a nice landing spot I'd passed earlier and beached my kayak. Soon I had my camp chair set up under some shady trees and was enjoying a picnic lunch in the woods. Once lunch was consumed and had settled a bit, I took a nice relaxing swim (well, more of a float really) in the lake. It was a perfect way to cool down and to wash away the lingering stress that hadn't already succumbed to the peaceful morning on the lake.

Once I had my fill of swimming, I reloaded my boat and headed back toward the launch, physically tired but mentally refreshed. Thank you Lake Conroe!

More Pictures from North Lake Conroe

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