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Topock Marsh - Five Mile Landing, AZ
mini location map2018-01-03
9 by photographer avatarazbackpackr
photographer avatar
 
Topock Marsh - Five Mile Landing, AZ 
Topock Marsh - Five Mile Landing, AZ
 
Kayak avatar Jan 03 2018
azbackpackr
Kayak6.87 Miles
Kayak6.87 Miles   2 Hrs   53 Mns   2.56 mph
      12 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
This time I launched at Five Mile Landing. This little ramp is on the map, but there is no sign at the turnoff. Motorboats can no longer launch from here. The marsh is getting too shallow, especially right now with the water level being kept so low. It is fairly ideal for kayaks, but it is easy to get lost in the dead tree area if you launch here. There used to be a campground here, but it's long gone. It's a pretty place, with many enormous salt cedars and a lot of palms.

I pretty much kept to the route I had planned. I paddled up the east side of the marsh lake, then worked my way across to the west through a lot of water that was very shallow. I was scraping mud sometimes, and wending my way through the spooky forest of dead mesquite trees. Once on the west side I got into the active boat channel, and the water is deep there. My destination was a place called "The Glory Hole." I guess it is, or used to be, a favorite fishing spot. But no one was there. In fact, I saw only one other boat all morning, likely a duck hunter. The hunters will be out and about until the end of this month, but regulations say they have to stop hunting at noon every day.

I took a break at the Glory Hole. A US Fish and Wildlife Service boat was sitting on a trailer there near the launch ramp. This ramp is closed to the public. I walked up onto the dirt road there to look things over and stretch my legs. I saw that the road is in really good condition for mountain biking. Sometimes they grade the roads and make them too soft and gravelly. So, if I want to get in a nice long ride I had better go soon before they mess it all up. This is also where I took the self portrait.

When looking at my GPS route, or in planning a trip to the marsh, use satellite. Maps will not be accurate because the marsh has changed a lot since the maps were made. In planning your trip, note there are some back channels on the west side of the marsh. These are all navigable, and interesting. As for riding the roads, the same applies. You can get lost in there, so print out a map from the satellite.

I saw a lot of big White Pelicans and a grebe (it dived before I could see if it was a Clark's or Western, and then never came up where I could see it.) Saw an osprey and a Northern Harrier hawk. Also saw some double-crested cormorants, a Great Egret, a couple of Great Blue Herons, some swallows (I think they were tree swallows, but will have to ask my birder friend), some coots and ducks. (I'm not sure what kind of ducks--they were flying by very fast southward, no doubt because there were hunters shooting at them to the north.) I have a hard time grabbing the camera out from its box, and then I am never happy with the results. I am not sure if it is the camera or its operator, but I suspect the latter...

Culture
Culture
HAZ - Selfie

dry Sacramento Wash Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Topock Marsh 51-75% full 51-75% full
Kind of low right now.
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