Sunday, November 27, 2005
Dianne and I paddled the bit of Deep Fork River pictured in the last post yesterday. The winds, clouds and weather forecasts did not sound too favorable, but I just had to get some excercise. If I can't paddle, my job keeps me wound up tighter than a banjo string, so we decided to risk it anyway. We were blessed. Although it did sprinkle on us a some and offered very little sunshine for our pictures, we had a great time on the river and emerged only lightly damp.
This was our first time paddling Deep Fork at this put-in and we were impressed. There is a nice road leading underneath the new Deep Fork River bridge on Highway 266 beteen Dewar and Grayson, Oklahoma. You can park a good distance off the highway, yet close to the water. We were able to easily launch kayaks from under the new bridge and paddle either way for quite a distance! Although it is quite curvy, the river channel is both deep and wide here and not nearly as clogged up with logjams as most of the Deep Fork River. Naturally, there is not much current in this very dry year. You have to actually enjoy paddling as this is no 'float trip'. We paddled upstream for about four miles and then paddled back to our put-in without much difference in speed.
This is a great time to paddle this leg of the river as the trees are quite colorful now and the area is teaming with wildlife. At one point early in the trip, we slowed the paddling pace for awhile to concentrate on paddling quietly. It's an important skill if you like observing the local critters. After a few minutes of quiet padling, we were rewarded with this Oklahoma beaver shot...you can't beat that! More pictures from the area are on Flickr.
We are looking forward to launching from this put-in again soon and paddling the other direction a few miles. It is a crying shame that so many good river put-ins on our Oklahoma highways have been closed in recent years. This is an example of one community that has kept their river crossing, even in the midst of new road development in the area. I hope to learn about more places like this in Oklahoma. I'm listing them on my Oklahoma Paddling Fun page, mostly for my own reference. Send me an email or leave a comment on the blog if you can reccomend any good Oklahoma river put-ins for kayaking.
I wonder if that local restaraunt owner noticed our yaks in the parking lot and the business a little bit of dirt road underneath the highway bridge brought him? IMHO, Communities that steward these resources wisely, rather than discarding them to reduce litter, loitering or other temporary nuisance, are likely to benefit from the growing popularity of Oklahoma kayaking.
One thing is certain, buying our kayaks has given Dianne and myself a new appreciation for the state of Oklahoma and the quality of life to be had here...and you can't beat that either.
Technorati Tags: Paddling Kayak Oklahoma Rivers Deep Fork
Friday, November 25, 2005
This Deep Fork River bridge near Grayson, OK has been mothballed and replaced with a new cement bridge. You can get into the water with a kayak from either of them. There's a link to the Google Map (and other kayaking put-ins) on my Oklahoma paddling website: http://www.oklahomaroadtrips.com/oklahoma-paddling.htm
Saturday, November 19, 2005
Boats decorated in holiday lights will be accompanied by fireworks along the Oklahoma River. The parade of boats will begin about 6 p.m. at Oklahoma City's Regatta Park and then travel west to Wiley Post Park. The boats will return to Regatta Park after the fireworks display. In 2004, it was estimated that around 35,000 people attended the inaugural river parade.
Those who would like to enter a boat in the parade can download entry forms here or pick up one in person at Downtown Oklahoma City Inc., 210 Park Ave., Suite 230. Forms also may be picked up at metro area boat dealers.
Entertainment starts at 4pm and the fireworks will begin at 7:30 p.m. Admission and parking are free!
Monday, November 14, 2005
Now we are stuck at home for another week shopping for Paddling PFD's and watching kayaking videos.
Hopefully, we can find time next weekend to paddle this bit of Deep Fork, get some pictures and add another Oklahoma Kayak Launch location to the list.
Technorati Tags: Paddling, Kayaking, Oklahoma
Sunday, November 13, 2005
OKC isn't the only one investing in their local recreational watersports infrastructure. One of Oklahoma's hottest whitewater playspots is about to get hotter!
Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO) is undertaking a series of improvements to the west bank of the Arkansas River near its Tulsa Power Station that will lead to the development of a white water recreation area to be called the Tulsa Wave Park. Improvements will include grading and stabilizing a 150-foot section of the bank and the construction of a path and dock for kayakers to safely enter the water.
Work on the project will begin Nov. 14 and will take approximately 30 days to complete. -- PSO
View the full press release from PSO here:
If you're a boater in Oklahoma and plan on making it to Tulsa, please send a brief email to Stan Whiteford, firstname.lastname@example.org, of PSO telling him you appreciate PSO's cooperation in this project.
Technorati Tags: Paddling, Kayaking, Oklahoma
Thursday, November 10, 2005
City's all over the US are getting on the bandwagon to develop their local water resources into local revenue sources by building whitewater play parks. Since Oklahoma City has been working for years to make their city more attractive to young urban professionals, creating more urban kayaking options is a natural choice. On that subject, there is a bit of good news from the Oklahoma City Outdoor Network.
As of Nov 7, 2005, thanks to a lot hard work of people within the OKC-ON, Oklahoma City will be hosting the engineers from Recreational Engineering and Planning sometime in January to work on the conceptual plan for OKC's Whitewater Play Park on the Oklahoma River.
OKC-ON is a great organization, I wish them the best of luck in their efforts!
Oklahoma City Outdoor Network OKC-ON
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Little Deep Fork Creek is a narrow, clear water creek with fairly sandy banks. It is really nothing like the Deep Fork River. It should be excellent in a more rainy season. More pics from this trip on Flickr at:
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
The new Bic Yakka a collapsible kayak with a rigid hull. Setup is simple. Just click over the release hasp and unfold. Then, inflate the stabilizing upper bladder with the included air pump. It takes only minutes.
Folded, the Yakka measures only 59 inches, and weighs only 44 pounds. A convenient transport wheel and easy grip handle make it as easy to transport as a large suitcase. - BicSportKayaks.com