We try to paddle Paul Lake each year in the spring and fall when there are few, if any, boats on the lake. On this last mid-October day the winds were calm for a quiet outing on the cooler waters of the lake. The lakeshore had receded quite dramatically with the whole lake surface down 3 – 4 feet. The cartop boat launch area was deserted, making it easy to unload and prep the boat for a workout paddling down the lake and back.
The paddle down to the western end of the lake and back is 7 km. With the sun lower in the sky, the south shoreline gets no sun so a return by the same shoreline is a good bet on a cool, sunny day.
It is rare to see another boat on the lakes or the river by mid-October. Since it is colder, I wear a spray skit, a good paddling jacket, neoprene boots, and good paddling gloves. I work at keeping my feet dry on the launch (that’s not easy) and I have a change of shoes ready at the truck when I am done. We will paddle into November waiting for milder days with no wind, before storing the kayak for the winter months.