Umbrella Sailing Woods Reservoir

Three Saturdays ago, my youngest nephew and I set out for Woods Reservoir with The Great Blue Heron atop Thursday, my longsuffering Volvo 850 sedan.  We drove out to the boat ramp near the hunter’s check-in station off Old Brick Church Road.  One other vehicle was parked nearby.  We unloaded the kayak, piled our stuff aboard, rigged the rudder, and set off.  We first explored down to the left of the boat-ramp, passing a duck-blind along the shore at our left.  We poked around a bit in the shallows, as far in to the overhanging branches as we could manage, then backed out again.  Paddling back out toward the brick pumping station near base housing, we turned right and explored down another branch, crossed to a courtesy dock intended for the use of DOD personnel where we pulled the boat ashore and sat on the dock to eat our lunch.  My mom, with whom my nephew had been staying, made us sandwiches and I can’t remember what else.  Because we didn’t want the sandwiches to turn, we ate our lunch around 10:00 am.  After lunch, we paddled into the shallows of that branch, too, then back toward the main body of the lake.  As we paddled out, the wind was at our back, so we deployed the golf umbrella and sailed a bit.  The wind was much stronger the further we went, and we sailed out to Little Elder Island, a rookery for every kind of local waterfowl.  Usually the island is covered with thick foliage, but it appeared this year’s drought conditions significantly diminished its growth.  We saw herons, egrets, duck-like birds.  The island didn’t stink as badly as it usually does, but we still probably risked acquiring histoplasmosis paddling as close to it as we did.  Paddling back to the put-in against that strong breeze required real effort.  We ate our generic fig-newton cookies and drank water in a sheltered inlet before paddling back to the boat ramp.  Here are some pictures:






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