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  • Radford Bean

Bend Paddle Trip - Day 2

Today is the day I have been looking forward to the past two weeks. Of all the lakes and rivers I’ll paddle this weekend, Hosmer Lake is the most spectacular from a paddling standpoint. In some ways paddling Hosmer is like paddling the Upper Klamath Canoe Trail. There is a narrow channel bordered rushes and wocus that snakes its way through lower half of the lake.

I get an early jump of my kayaking friends from Kayak Portland. Most of them haven’t arrived yet. I’ll join up with them later after I have had a chance to videotape my paddle trip.

The beauty of a canoe is I don’t have to stay in the channel and choose, instead, to bust through some of the rushes where my kayaking buddies can’t go. Doing so provides for some interesting video footage. I hang out in the wocus and among the rush photographing and videotaping the yellow-headed and red-winged blackbirds and birds that look like sparrows as they hop along the wocus in search of insects hiding among the plants.

South Sister and Broken Top stand tall and majestic over Hosmer Lake. The lake is truly one of the most picturesque in Oregon. There are some who favor Sparks over Hosmer; I am just the opposite. The wildlife, aquatic plants, and the meandering water trail through the aquatic vegetation make Hosmer a favorite of mine.

Great photography is all about being in the right place at the right time, and I just so happen to be in the right place at the right time when I notice a fisherman in a canoe hook a fish. I am not facing the right direction, however, so I quickly paddle across the lake (it’s a very narrow lake) to get behind the man so I can photograph him in the foreground with South Sister in the background. I fire off the camera several times and capture one of my best shots of all time! After he lands the fish, he beckons me to come closer to get a better look. It’s a beautiful brook trout—it has the mottled brown skin and deep red belly. It’s a beauty. This fisherman is more into catch and release and lets the trout slide out of his hands back into the water so it can live another day.

At the north end of the lake, I am finally joined by my Kayak Portland friends. We paddle around together, and I get several shots of them in the foreground with Broken Top in the background. I paddle with them for a little while before striking out on my own again to do more wildlife photography.

I want to have an early dinner because I ate late last night, and I want time to just relax at my campsite, so I head back to the boat launch. When I get back to the boat launch, I discover that the parking lot is overflowing with vehicles. In fact, as I am leaving the lake, I notice that people are having to park several hundred feet from the lake. It’s a good thing I got to Hosmer Lake when I did.

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