Thursday, December 2, 2010

Lake Trial Run

I’ve made several changes to how the canoe is transported, so today was a short, but enjoyable, trial run. The temperature was 28-deg. this morning, but by afternoon had climbed thirty degrees to 58, and the winds were calm to about 5 NE. I had hoped to get a couple paddlers together to do Lake Carl Blackwell, but there was no interest, so I just ran down to Canton Lake. The sky was just marked with a few cirrus, and the calm conditions were conducive to some casual gunkholing. So much so, that I spent two hours going up the lake, when it took only 38 minutes coming back.

So, who needs a boat to enjoy the lake?

So I was only underway for 3 hrs 8 minutes, plus another 29 minutes drifting while I had lunch. I only covered 5.7 miles and averaged 2.2 kts., so it was just a lazy and enjoyable afternoon on the water.

I had used the canoe cart to move the canoe around a couple times at home, but this was the first time to actually put it to use. Rather than trying to do everything at the water’s edge, I unloaded the canoe in the parking lot, loaded the gear, and walked the canoe to the ramp. It’s amazing how easily it moves the boat. I had brought nearly a full load: 40 lbs. of water, a full pack, some provisions, the Paddle Cart and other gear to see how the canoe handled the load. About the only thing missing was a tent. With a little adjustment, the gear can balance the boat and enable it to be moved about with just a light touch on the end of the canoe. I had looked at carts for a good while without being able to decide on one, but saw that a couple Watertribe members had used a PaddleCart for some really long portages, both on foot and with a bicycle-towed canoe/kayak cart, and had seen several good reviews on The cart is heavily constructed of welded aluminum, and disassembles for compact stowage. I got the Dually, which has four wheels so it’s easier to pull in sand, rough terrain or grass. It is available at

When I returned to the ramp, I removed the heavy gear so it would be easier to set the canoe on the cart, and then reloaded it. Once back at the truck after pulling it through a bunch of grass, I noticed a lot of sand burrs in the tires. Having had bicycle tires punctured by them, I was prompt to remove them, all 74 of them.


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