Welcome to my descriptions, stories, and sometimes out and out lies about my weekend adventures around the North West. Though most of these are about Hiking, I may take you on some other outside adventures. Please leave me comments or suggestions and have fun.
Sunday, July 7, 2013
Cape Meares Lake
Cape Meares Lake
This weekend was the 1 year anniversary
of the kayak meetup club that I belong to. The club organizer (Julie)
put together a wonderful set of kayak adventures out on the coast. We
had a LOT of people show up. For Friday evening, we met at the little
boat launch out on Cape Meares to paddle around Cape Meares Lake.
Some interesting history in this area.
The lake and sand dune spit used to be a posh resort back in the
early 20th century. It was called BayOcean and it was
trying to be the Atlantic City of the west coast. It had a dance hall
and a huge “Natatorium” that housed a heated saltwater pool with
a wave machine. They needed this because the ocean is too frigging
cold to swim in without a dry suit. This little town had a railroad,
a water system, and even their own electric generator. They spent a
lot of money bringing in tourists and investor and potential rich
land owners from Portland. Since the Tillamook railroad wasn't built
yet, they would come from Portland on a steam yacht bought for that
But the town's growth was it's own
undoing. They built a spit at the entrance to the bar at tillamook
bay to make the bar easier to cross (and so easier to bring in
supplies and investors), but that spit disrupted the natural flow of
sand down the beach and created an erosion problem that eventually
doomed the town to destruction by winter storm. Now there is pretty
much nothing left of the town and the fresh water lake we are doing
our paddle on is there instead.
Lots of parking along the road,
however, so our 30+ kayaks could get to the water and have our little
paddle. It is a very protected and shallow lake. Lots of lake weed
growing in it. Some reeds. A beaver lodge off on the north side. We
also saw some lovely water lilies. But we paddled all around the
entire lake in an hour or so without breaking a sweat. By itself,
this lake isn't worth the drive to the coast, but as a start to a
weekend of kayaking, it is the perfect warmup.
A history lesson for the meet up
And the club helped the fun along by
have a little game of capture the flag, kayak style. We tied little
flags to the stern of every boat. 2 teams, Red and Yellow, and then
you just go out and GET THE FLAGS of the other team. When you lose
your flag, you are out of the competition so protect your stern. It
was great fun, had a few people dip over, but the lake isn't that
deep and so wasn't that cold. Much fun was had by all.