Monday, August 29, 2005

Our Trip to OKC Wildlife Expo 2005

Kayak Into at OKC Wildlife Expo 2005 Learning To Enjoy the Oklahoma Outdoors

The weekend Dianne, Dylan and I ventured up to OKC to attend the 2005 Wildlife Expo put on by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.

The OKC Outdoor Network (blog) got their members to loan out their kayaks and canoes, plus sent out volunteers to help newbies get a taste of paddle sport. The kids seemed to love it!

The expo is put on to introduce Oklahoman's, especially young folks, to the great fun to had in the great outdoors of Oklahoma. With the help of an army of volunteers, they gave demonstrations, lectures and hands-on training in fly fishing, archery, kayaking, tracking, trapping, rock climbing, Bow Hunting, mountain biking, paintball, novel camping supplies and loads more stuff. I got a fun lesson on making fire the old fashioned way...with friction.

Since the event was free, the lines were long...real long, but we waited patiently. Dylan got some bait casting tips and a great intro to archery. There is a movement afoot to start teaching archery in our public schools and I for one hope it is successful.

On the downside, I didn't manage to get that fly fishing lesson I was hoping for and they canceled the Atlatl throwing for safetly reasons. I was looking forward to the atlatl demonstration, so it was interesting to hear about them and see the models they brought. However, I would much rather chunk one than get a lecture.

Next year, I think I'm going to study the schedule a little closer and try to make it to more of the coolest demonstrations.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

High Water At Turner Falls

More Oklahoma Whitewater!

Turner Falls Park in Oklahoma
I just learned from an Oklahoma blogger that the Turner Falls area has gotten some major rainfall recently. Judging from the picture James posted, I think I may need to personally investigate this matter. We have been getting some rain here in my area lately, but nothing like at Turner Falls.

I haven't been able to visit the Turner Falls area since my days of attending church camp there as a child. Even then, as a cynical, self-absorbed youth, I found the beauty of Turner Falls to be awe inspiring

Over five inches of rain fell between Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 13-14, stranding more than a dozen campers at Turner Falls Park.

Park Manager Tom Graham said Monday picnic tables are the only known casualties of the August flood. About 15 campers, however, played the waiting game, waiting for Honey Creek to recede.

Anybody make it out that way for some paddling?

Tribulations of a Young Professional

If PaddleTales Were A Magazine

Fun with Graphics Generators

As a guy who has always been a helpless, hopeless basket-case in the field of art, I always wished I could make things of beauty... or at least recognizable!

Thankfully, technologies have been created for folks like me. I call them Graphics Generators. A cool one I was playing with this week makes Flickr pictures look like magazine covers. Here's an example:

Click to See Full Size Image

Cool, huh?
You can make your own if you have a free flickr account (very handy if you take many pictures) and a little time. This Flickr magazine cover generator is great fun!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Sweet Morning Paddling on Tenkiller Lake

Tenkiller Lake KayakingDianne and I spent the weekend happily tucked away in the largest cove on Tenkiller Lake...Burnt Cabin. We paddled both kayaks around the wonderfully clear waters of Tenkiller and camped on the bank.

The fishing was a little slow, but Thank God you can always depend on Oklahoma's weather for some entertainment. We enjoyed the nighttime sky fireworks of a distant storm on one side and a skyful of stars on the other.

Early the next morning we paddled around the newly surfaced trees along the edges of Tenkiller Lake. Later, a thick fog rolled in and the morning stayed comfortably cool until nearly Noon. We had a nice lunch at the marina and learned that they have water bikes, Funyaks, canoes and even some motor powered boats for rent.

We really enjoyed Burnt Cabin Resort and Tenkiller Lake is a real jewel.

Friday, August 19, 2005

12th Annual Illinois River Balloon Fest in Tahlequah

Illinois River BalloonFest 2005
Date: 8/19/2005 - 8/20/2005
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Place: Tahlequah Municipal Airport

Gates open Friday at 4:00pm and continue through Saturday. For more information, see: or call 918-453-9958.

Upcoming Events at Lake Tenkiller

Tenkiller Lake Fishing Report

Tenkiller Lake Fishing Report - from The Okmulgee Times

Elevation 6 3/4 ft. below normal, water 88 degrees. Largemouth bass slow with some action midday in brush on soft jigs; catfish good drifting at 10 to 20 ft. on cut baits and good on stinkbaits at 20 ft. mud flats; sunfish good on worms in docks. Report submitted by Monte Brooks, Cookson Village Resort. 8-14-05

Okmulgee Daily Times 8-14-2005 - Fishing Report.

This Weekend's Paddling - Tenkiller Lake

It looks like we will be paddling the yaks around on Tenkiller Lake this weekend. We still haven't decided exactly where to camp, so if anyone has reccomendations, we would love to hear them!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Enjoy Local Wines and Local Brews at Skiatook LakeFest 05

LakeFest 05 - October 15, 2005!

The Skiatook Lake Association and Crystal Bay Marina are sponsoring LAKEFEST 05.

Paddle on out to Skiatook Lake for an afternoon and evening celebration with tastings from two Oklahoma Wineriess and the Tulsa FOAM home brewers organization.

Three live bands will feature jazz, rock, and blues. Natura Vineyards and Nuyaka Creek Winery will feature their wines.It starts October 15th 2005 at 2pm at Crystal Bay Marina point (6mi west of Skiatook,Ok on Highway 20) which overlooks 'the clearest lake in Oklahoma'.

Technorati Tags: Oklahoma Wine Lakes Wine Tasting Food & Drink

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

A New Blog for OKC Outdoor Network

New Blog for OKC Outdoor Network

The Oklahoma City Outdoor Network gives people who camp, hike, backpack, rock climb, canoe, kayak, cycle, mountain bike and walk... a way to make new like-minded friends.

They have a really informative website and now have added a brand new blog!

OKC Outdoor Network - Message Blog

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Trinity River Paddlesport Race Near Dallas 9-10-2005

The Trinity River Challenge September 10, 2005

The Trinity River Challenge is an 11 mile paddlesport race held every September to raise money for the river related causes that the Dallas Downriver Club (DDRC) supports. The race course is a stretch of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River between Carrollton and Lewisville TX.

Originally the race was run from the bottom of Lewisville Dam to McInnish Park in Carrollton, but due to the security issues of the post-9/11 era, the DDRC is not able to gain access to the property below the Dam so the race is now run as an up and back race starting and finishing at McInnish Park.

  • September 6, 2005 - Early Registration Deadline

  • September 10, 2005 - Registration/Check in opens 7:45 am

  • Registration/Check in closes 9:00 am

  • Racers Meeting 9:15 am

  • Race Starts 9:30 am

For their entry fee and participation, the racers receive a Trinity River Challenge tee shirt, a goodie bag containing various free items from the race sponsors, and a hot lunch featuring barbeque beef brisket and all the trimmings.

Racers compete in a wide range of boat classes in the men's, women's and mixed divisions from solo recreational kayak or canoe out for a day of fun on the river all the way to the USCA type racing boats who are currently trying to run the course in less than one hour and thirty minutes.

Hope to see you there!

The Dallas Downriver Club

Technorati Tags: kayak canoe paddling

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Seen Any Pelicans in Oklahoma, Lately?

Camping and Paddling on Grand Lake
Camping on Grand Lake
Dianne and I spent last night in our little Wal-Mart tent at Pelican Landing Resort and Campground near Ketchum, OK. This was our first visit to their shaded waterfront campsites on the Grand Lake O' the Cherokees, but I think we will be back soon!

Although we didn't catch any fish, the facilities were excellent and we had loads of fun paddling around the Duck Creek section of Grand Lake. I definately want to return in September with my son, as I am told that Grand Lake is on the annual migration path for Pelicans. In fact, we may try to make it to the Grand Lake Pelican Festival September 23-25... I'll let you know if we see Pelicans!

Pelican Landing Resort occupies 1/2 a mile of waterfront on the Duck Creek arm of Grand Lake. The camping is sort of expensive at $18.50 per night for non-members, but the bathrooms and showers were very clean, well lit, and all functioning. The have a nice pool on site, ice, a clubhouse with vending machines, A/C and TV. I mention the A/C and TV because those are the letters I miss most of all while camping! We asked about the price of memberships, but it was so far beyond what we were willing to pay that I instantly forgot the actual price.

Although we paid more to camp than I ever have before, it was money well spent. Dianne and I had a blast paddling our yaks and we even enjoyed a midnight swim. Also, this was the Maiden Voyage of our new Kayak Trailer!Our New Kayak Trailer
Ok, we didn't up the $700 plus for an actual kayak trailer. I was feeling kind of cheap after investing almost $300 in getting a hitch installed frum U-Haul. However, We needed a utility trailer for some light hauling and carrying the kayaks on our small cars was becoming a pain.

A farm supplies franchise store who shall remain nameless, due to poor customer service and...well...I can't spell their name, sold us this trailer for around $400. It made the trip from Okmulgee to Grand Lake with no problems. Once we learn to back the trailer up, without removing it from the car, we should be in good shape!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Grand Lake Paddling

I think we may take a short camping trip to the Grand Lake area soon. We are considering the Pelican Landing area. Lake paddling isn't as fun as running rivers, but early in the morning and just at dusk, lake paddling offers a serene escape for the rat race.
What the office takes away, the river gives back.

Happy Paddling!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Recreational Kayaks Brings Paddling To The Masses

Kayaking As A Not So Extreme Sport

If your idea of paddling is floating around the local lakes or ponds, photography or wildlife watching on slow rivers, then you may be a recreational kayaker.

Recreational kayaks make an ideal introduction to the sport of paddling. If you don't have the time to commit to paddling, but still want to get on the water, a recreational kayak is ideal. Owning a Rec Kayak can be great excercise, a fun fishing platform and immediate gratification for the inexperienced paddler.

Kayaks designed for recreational use have become a favorite among paddlers interested in a more functional kayak for everyday use. These kayaks are cheaper than whitewater kayaks, easier to transport than canoes and offer plenty of room in the cockpit area to enable freedom of movement without worrying about tipping over.

My wife and I enjoyed renting rec kayaks so much that we bought a couple for ourselves. We picked up a Heritage FeatherLite Angler at Academy Sports in Tulsa and a Perception Swifty from OKC's Bass Pro Shop. Each boat is about nine and one half feet long and cost around $400. Judging from the amount of money we spent renting boats from outfitters, we should be saving big money already!

Sadly, the purchase of these two boats have created within us a strong desire to buy a kayak trailer to haul them on...and fishing gear...and an RV...and a kayak GPS.

Canoe Rental for North Canadian River Float Trips

River Adventures Now Offers Weekend Canoe Rentals on the North Canadian River

Weekends only $25.00 per canoe for 8 mi trip.
Shuttle service runs from Highway 81 to Foreman Road at the river bridge.

Call for more information: 405-262-6857

PaddleTales - Canoeing, Kayaking In and Around Oklahoma

Treasure on the Kiamichi River Near Antlers, OK

Treasure Hunting in Southeastern Oklahoma Oct. 21- 22!

October 21, 22 is the World Wide Association of Treasure Seekers (WWATS) annual meeting at the K River Campground on Oklahoma's Kiamichi River.

They hide valuable treasures and allow anyone to hunt for and keep all they find. No charge for the hunt. A $2 day use fee will be charged to enter the park for this event. And of course you will want to stay at K River Campground while attending this event. For more information visit:

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Oklahoma River - Regulations

OKC Paddlers and the Oklahoma River

Regulations for use of the Oklahoma River (used to be the North Canadian River) were recently adopted by the Oklahoma City Council and took effect May 4th, 2005. The rules governing fishing, boating and trail use were developed to 'make the river recreation area convenient and safe'.

Read the whole ordinance here: OKC Paddling Law

New Whitewater Kayak School in Oklahoma

New Whitewater Kayak School Opens in Tahlequah

Learn Kayak 101 on the Illinois River. Half-day classes are held every Saturday on the Illinois River.

Here's where you sign up:

Brand New Blog... Gonna Make It Great!

Oklahoma Wildlife Expo 2005 - Aug 27 & 28

It is only natural that the inaugural posting for this new blog on Oklahoma Paddle Sports be an announcement for the big Oklahoma Wildlife Expo 2005 kicking off at the end of August.

This event to be held at the Lazy E Arena just north of OKC is going to be huge! Here are just a few of the cool attractions I am looking forward to:

Canoeing and kayaking with the OKC Outdoor Network!

The OKC Outdoor Network will provide canoes and kayaks and instruction for those wanting to try their hands at this exciting water sport. This Network of outdoor enthusiasts gives people who camp, hike, rock climb, canoe, kayak, cycle, mountain bike, and walk a way to make new like-minded friends. The event will include canoe/kayak instruction, safety lessons, and a chance to try out a choice of equipment to paddle around a shallow water course inside the arena.

Learn about the Oklahoma City University / Chesapeake Boat House

The OKC University/Chesapeake Boathouse group will have a booth and inform Expoer's about rowing events upcoming on the Oklahoma River in OKC.

Visitors will also be able to try out the rowing technique in a rowing ergometer and see a rowing shell.

Fly Fishing For Bass!

Former Wildlife Commissioner and noted fly fishing expert Mark Patton will demonstrate fly fishing techniques with a special emphasis on tactics and equipment for catching bass in ponds and lakes.

Falconry, Archery & Atlatl Demonstrations

The Oklahoma Falconer’s Association will feature these unique and interesting birds of prey. Learn about the ancient sport of hunting with falcons. Martin Nature Park Nature Center’s Neil Garrison and Norma Pinney, who will also demonstrate primitive archery and the use of an atlatl.

Big Ol' Prizes!

You could also win a lifetime combination license just for pre-registering and attending the Expo!

Register, attend the Expo on Sat. Aug 27, or Sun., Aug 28, and check-in, you will automatically be put in a drawing for a lifetime combination hunting and fishing license. Hunting and fishing licenses aren't the only door prizes and giveaways at the Expo. Participants will be eligible to win many more fabulous prizes, including John Deere's new Buck 500 4WD Auto ATV from P&K Equipment.

Oklahoma Wildlife Expo 2005
August 27 & 28, 2005
Saturday 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.