When the North Thompson and the South Thompson rivers rise, the Thompson River expands and the estuary at the head of Kamloops Lake widens into a floodlands. We can launch a canoe or kayak from the BC Parks Lac du Bois Wildlife Management Area parking area. .This launch spot is suitable for canoes and kayaks only during freshet.
We paddle out through Tranquille Bay past the floodland shrub “islands” to the river, then across the river to the far side.
When there is no wind, there are many reflections in the calm bayous.
Willows are tolerant of the salt-rich alkaline waters. They are the dominant plant in the floodlands.
Clusters of willows and salt-tolerant shrubs make watery islands.
From the river, Mount Mara rises above and reflects in the water.
Kamloops Lake and the estuary become one, a larger lake during freshet.
Along the flood channels and in the bayous, there are carp, ducks, western painted turtles, cormorants, herons, eagles, osprey, geese, blackbirds, crows, and wide variety of birds and insects.
We paddle quietly, careful not to startle the wildlife, listening for the calls of birds, always aware that we need to be as unobtrusive as we can in the seasonal Tranquille floodlands.
The floodlands offer the finest paddling in our area for May and June each year. Watch for our kayaks there.