Panuke Lake Boat Launch
I traveled Highway #1 from Garlands Crossing to Three Mile Plains. There, I turned onto Panuke Road. This paved road eventually turns into a gravel road that ends at the boat launch.
There is lots of space to maneuver your vehicle if you have a trailer hauling your boat, like I do!
The blue dot is where the boat launch is on Panuke Lake.
Panuke Lake has an interesting history. It was an important portage route first by the Mi’kmaq, then later European explorers and settlers.
I did not have a chart of the lake, and wasn’t paying much attention to my deck compass as I departed. I headed straight out from the launch site – towards an island. I planned on stopping but changed my mind as I was too eager to be paddling and carried on hoping to find another beach somewhere along the way. I though I was paddling towards the northern tip of the lake, but was actually heading south. It was very confusing when I checked my GPS – but soon realized and got my bearings.
A Nice Beach
I found a small beach and stopped for a bit of a siesta! It was a really hot day. I wanted to go for a swim, but chickened out! Why? Because there wasn’t much of a gradual slope into the deeper water. It was a few meters of shallow then a dramatic drop into dark water. All I could imagine was a giant lake creature lunging up from the depths to swallow me whole!
This lake had an interesting shoreline with, of course, lots of trees. The soil had a bit of red/pinkish hue and some terrain reminded me of the desert in Qatar. This was a fast moving lake, with winds increasing as the day progressed, making stopping for photos challenging at times. Knowing the history of the lake, I closed my eyes and imagined what it would have been like for Mi’kmaq, European explorers and settlers to paddle this 30km lake…
Back to the Launch Site
When I paddle alone, I don’t got too far into the unknown. I would estimate that I traveled about one fifth of the lake, turned around and returned to the launch site. I was out for about three hours. When I stop at a beach, I like to collect interesting rocks and driftwood. I found a piece of driftwood to add to my collection! Oh, I will mention that I lost cell phone reception before reaching the beach and wasn’t able to get a signal until I arrived back to the launch site.
I’d like to take a day and paddle the entire lake, but I don’t know quite enough about it yet. As I started out on this paddle, I was into the wind and current, that made coming back easier thanks to a noticeable tailwind. What I don’t know is – does the lake always move like this? Time will tell as I get more experience paddling this lake and come to know it better.