Hayward Lake 23-08-20 Trip Report

 It’s been a bit of a struggle this year getting trips to run in the valley due to low participation but there were 3 canoes ready to go on this trip so it was a go! However, Mother Nature decided  we needed smoky skies, presumably to reduce our exposure to the sun. We were fortunate that it wasn’t too heavy and did not worsen during the day.

A light breeze kept the temperature moderate and the water, as per usual there, was fairly calm. David W, Anna, Dave S and Kaori, Carole and I set off a little ahead of time as everyone heeded the warning of limited parking and were there a bit early. We headed up the north channel past “Shirley” the lake tugboat to the base of the dam. It’s a quiet, pleasant channel to ease into the day’s paddle. We followed the north end of the waterway past the dam spillway to the east shoreline where we stayed all the way down the lake.  We passed a cluster of tent caterpillars whose nests hung over the water as we paddled by. Near the end of the lake is a small dock where you can get out of the canoes; it’s also accessible from the Reservoir Trail which also follows the east shoreline just inside the forest.

We went ashore for a stretch and look around the area. After our break we headed further up the lake a short distance to our farthest point, a channel called Hairsine Inlet.  Part of the old crossing bridge remains while the bureaucrats decide who is responsible for repairs. It used to form the link for a 16km trail around the entire lake. When it fell into disrepair about 10 years ago a stalemate developed and the bridge remains out of service.  But, it’s a nice little paddle in and back out.

From there we headed across the lake to the sandy beach where we routinely stop for lunch on this paddle. This day there were a few people but it was not crowded and made for a pleasant lunch stop. The smoke still hung in the air but it was lighter than earlier and the temperature had warmed up. After a good lunch we departed for the trip back. Along the way we checked out a terrific swimming location though no one decided to enter what was pleasantly temperate water.

We rounded the last point and the motivation for our early start came into view, the main beach area.  Being from this area for a long time I recall coming here with our family, to a quiet, peaceful day at the lake.  The tranquility of the location has long since been discovered by many and it is now an extremely popular and normally very crowded family picnic spot. So be warned, if you want to go to Hayward Lake be there early.

Thanks to the paddlers, especially those who traveled a distance to come out. It was terrific to see you all.

Bob Podesta



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