~Dipping your paddle into the water can be therapeutic. Especially when the water is perfectly calm and the only movement made, is from your kayak, as you glide across the water, and from your paddle as you pull yourself forward, stroke by quiet stroke. The reflection of the hillside in the water says it all.
Rattlesnake Bar is one of the many State Park launch points on Folsom Lake, located in Newcastle about 15 minutes from Granite Bay. The beauty about this launch is that once you’ve paddle upstream about .25 miles, you’re in the 5mph zone for boats. You know, the annoying speed boats that like to zip past as fast as they can, interrupting your calm. I’m not saying all speed boats are annoying, but I personally prefer quiet and calm on most occasions. There’s enough noise in the world, I don’t want it here.
After watching the weather for a few days, it was looking good for a Saturday evening paddle. Mild temperatures and little wind, ah yes, my favorite conditions to paddle in! I asked a few friends to join me and although a few accepted and later backed out, one lucky friend was waiting for me as I drove into the parking lot. We offloaded our kayaks, packed our dinner and set off upstream. The North Fork of the American River spills into the lake not too far from here, an our plan was to go as far as we could before the current was too swift. That was our plan anyway.
This was Debbie’s first time from this launch, so I was excited to show her around. We paddled on the Northern shoreline and poked our boats into a little cove where PG&E’s Newcastle Hydroelectric water station churns water into power for the town of Newcastle.
The walls look like giant puzzle pieces.
The cove eventually ends where a little creek spills into the lake. There’s a hiking trail up above, and you can hike for many miles, just beware of Rattlesnakes, especially when it’s warm out. This is a great place to hike in the winter.
As we make our way back to the main channel, the sun and clouds are busy making shapes on the hillside.
As we round the corner, the sky starts to get a little darker and Debbie points out the little sprinkles hitting the water in front of us. Hmm, let’s go a little further before heading back in.
Ok, the sprinkles are more frequent now, time to turn around. No time to eat our dinner on the shore this time.
We paddle back to the launch, load up our kayaks and head over to an overlook to eat dinner. Can’t beat the view!
I couldn’t resist taking a shot of the grass with the sun sinking in the background. Boy, are we lucky to live where we do. Debbie said it earlier and I wholeheartedly agree!