Trip # 3 Newboro and Chaffeys Locks

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Chaffeys Lock behind me and all my gear aboard the kayak, I was heading up through Clear Lake on my way to overnite at NewBoro Lock.

As soon as I cleared the Isthmus Channel I was blasted by a strong headwind. I kept to the eastern shore and crept northward in the lee as much as possible.

Paddling up to Goat Island through Elbow Channel I entered Newboro lake. The wind was full on and the lake was covered with whitecaps. My plan was to head up along the eastern side of the lake and paddle north in the shelter of the many islands. On the south shore of Newboro lake is a granite cliff which the waves were crashing against and creating chaotic chop. My kayak is too small and has no forward flotation so if I take on water its serious. I struggled to hold my ground against the wind and wondered if I was crazy to continue.

Determined I changed course and tried sneaking up wind in the western lee where I could find it. I set my goal points and paddled like crazy all the way up to Tetts Point where I tied on to a tree and rested. The next leg would into the open water for a 3/4 km scramble to Fingerboard Island. It was an exhilarating sprint straight into the wind. The kayak cut through the waves with a lot of water splashing over the deck.

At Fingerboard Island I stayed to the southern shores of the numerous islands south of the Newboro Lockstation and came up through Rocky Channel and around MaCaskill Isand where I at last could see my destination. I pulled out at the eastern portage dock and lay on the deck panting. I was met by a pair of paddlers with a tandem kayak. They were easily in their 70’s and were heading down to Chaffeys. “Hows the paddling?” they asked as they loaded up and headed off down wind.

The shore hugging trip across Newboro Lake from the Isthmus is about 6.5 km.

I set up camp and wandered into Newboro town for an early dinner at the Stirling Lodge. I earned that meal for sure.

Total trip exploring Indian, Benson, Clear and Newboro lakes on may way from Chaffeys: 17km

The following morning the air was clear and still. I headed out early as I didn’t want the wind to come up and make the trip back difficult. I headed south through the eastern islands and enjoyed the clear air and many sites and sounds. I entered Clear Lake and explored the easterly bounds around to the Isthmus and back into Indian Lake. I stopped for a snack and swim at Rock Island before heading into Chaffeys.

I packed up and was in the car shortly after noon. More rain was expected and I felt Poonamalie would be a good place to weather a storm.

Things learned!

  • A waterproof notebook is a nice accessory.
  • Let the lockstaff know your plans in case something happens.

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