This was pretty close to being an epic trip--a three-day kayaking adventure along the south end of Lake Havasu. It was really fun. This end of the 45-mile-long lake is far less developed than the northern end. From Parker Dam up to Rotary Park is about 18 miles but we poked into many deep coves, bays and canyons which added to our mileage. We camped on a white sandy beach the first night, and on an island the second night.
We saw many water birds, plus a big horn ram. We saw many beautiful bays and little hidden coves with beautiful red cliffs. A few flowers were in bloom, also. I did a little swimming, although the water is a bit chilly this time of year. I also took several strolls to the tops of dunes to see the view.
We started at the south end and paddled north, crossing the lake a few times. This can be dicey due to speed boats in the middle. We did the trip in this direction due to the prevailing wind, which was from the south. Sometimes it was pretty breezy. A couple of times we had heavy chop, white caps, and some one and two-foot swells to contend with. I was glad to have brought a spray skirt, but my friend didn't have one. But she was okay.
Many boat-in campsites have been developed by both the BLM and the AZ State Parks--I think the total number is about 100 sites. BLM sites were MUCH better. AZ sites were dirty and shabby, and cost 4X as much if you believed the signs. BLM wants $10 per night per group of 6 or fewer. AZ State Parks wanted $20 per vessel. So, if you interpret that literally, two little kayaks, two people, one campsite, $40. How dumb is that? And the AZ Parks don't take care of their sites very well. BLM is out there with more than one boat every day doing maintenance. The BLM's pit toilets were amazingly clean-they even smelled sweet! Lots of extra TP. Trash has been emptied, etc. Sites are very clean. AZ sites had a lot of filth left over from spring break madness, but some of it seemed older than that. Just icky. Dirty pit toilets, dirty everything. Picnic tables sometimes at a huge slant in the AZ sites, also, which they could fix with some labor, but they don't send people to do it.
Both agencies might want to consider a sign which says: "Leave this site cleaner than you found it." An effort to educate the boating public will eventually pay off.
This trip marked the completion of another dam-to-dam section of the lower Colorado River for me. This section is Davis Dam (near Bullhead City) to Parker Dam. It includes the Topock Gorge. It's a bit under 90 miles between these two dams, and I completed paddling it in quite a few day trips, plus this three-day trip.
This is the end of my 6-month season down in the desert. I'll head for the high country this week to spend 6 months in Williams. So, this winter I completed paddling this dam-to-dam section of the Colorado River. Plus I completed Parker Dam to Headgate Rock Dam, and Imperial Dam to Laguna Dam. I am not finished with my project of paddling the entire lower Colorado River and its reservoirs, but I'm glad I have something to look forward to next winter! Next winter I hope to complete Lake Mohave, plus Headgate Rock Dam (in Parker) to Blythe, and also Yuma to Morelos Dam. What about Lake Mead? I'll start working on that monster, too.