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Blue Ridge Reservoir - CC Cragin
15 Photosets

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mini location map2020-07-30
4 by photographer avatarjtaylor
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Blue Ridge Reservoir - CC CraginPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Paddleboarding avatar Jul 30 2020
jtaylor
Paddleboarding8.00 Miles
Paddleboarding8.00 Miles4 Days         
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Chapman
PrestonSands
Return to Blue Ridge with a modified group (John and Tim replacing Gary). Knowing the COVID crowds would be an issue, we managed to get on the water Thursday night. It was pretty special paddling in the dark under a nearly-full moon. We arrived at our intended spot to find it vacant, but with a muddier ingress than last year due to a lower water level. It was a frustrating/comical time getting our gear out of the mess at 10pm. The next morning, John and I put our civil engineering hats on and built a fine specimen of a dock, making the mud a non-issue thereafter. Really, we didn't have a choice: Preston had become a tyrannical pirate for the weekend and forced us to do so or risk walking the plank (seriously, you can see his ship in the photoset).

Glad we made the effort to go in Thursday. By 10am multiple groups passed us looking for a sizable campsite. To put this in context, last year we saw only a handful of paddlers - and no campers - come by our site the entire weekend. I would say it was at least twice as busy on the lake.

Tim left us Friday evening to get to work. All camp chores done, we settled-in to chill mode. Most of Saturday was spent floating and swimming lazily to stay cool. Most of Saturday evening was spent churning our booze inventory.

As usual, the day we had to leave was the most peaceful. I spent a few minutes beneath an aspen soaking it in before returning to the Phoenix furnace. All is good though. At least we beat the crowds and got some cooler respite.
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“...wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread.”
-Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire
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