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For this adventure, we chose a lake that I am familiar with, Upper Bear River Reservoir. I was joined by my Dad and friends Jack, Al, and Gary. The plan was to spend three days and two nights relaxing and fishing in one of my favorite places in the Sierras. This adventure would require a little more work than most, and I’m not sure the others really knew what they were getting themselves into…
First, we had to get our gear loaded into the Kraken, Kilroy, Cruise, and canoe at the boat launch that is about in the middle of Lower Bear River Reservoir. From there we paddled towards the dam for Upper Bear, with the wind to our backs we made pretty good time. One suggestion I can make when camping out of your kayak is to make sure that the weight you are carrying is evenly distributed. With kayaks like my Kraken, you can trim the seat which will move your body weight forward or back, to help even things out a bit. However, mine was not. With a heavy ice chest in the back and the strong wind we encountered, the rear of my Kraken kept wanting to swing around. A quick fix for this problem was to use my rudder and it allowed me to maintain my course without fighting the wind constantly.
Once at the dam, the real fun began! I mean that in the most sarcastic way possible… We landed up against the granite rock, in current, and began unloading our kayaks for the trek up the hill to the top of the dam. I didn’t time it, but I know it took us a little while to transport all our gear up, then lastly the kayaks and canoe. However, with the teamwork we had, it wasn’t too terrible of a chore. Once at the top we loaded back up and wheeled across the dam to the other side, where we would launch into Upper Bear.
Finally, on the water where we intended to camp, we paddled our way towards the back of the lake to an island where we’d find our campsite. This spot I had stumbled across on a day trip I did a year or so ago and we hoped it wasn’t occupied. Lucky for us it wasn’t! The accommodations are quite good at this campsite, much better than what we are used to. Not only was there the normal fire ring and a bench, but a kitchen/bar and a couple tables were included! Upon our arrival, we unloaded and set up camp so we could prepare for an evening of fishing.
All three days we were there the trout fishing was pretty amazing! Everyone was able to get their fair share of fish landed from both shore and the kayaks. Our campsite was also right next to the inlet, which was the hotspot where we caught and released Rainbows and Kamloops. They weren’t exactly monsters, but they were hard fighters that went areal as soon as you hooked them. Definitely fun on our light tackle!
Although we had to work hard for it, the end result was a relaxing three days out in the spectacular Sierras! We enjoyed the great views of waterfalls and shear granite cliffs. Along with some great company, good food, and many stories around the campfire. I’m already looking forward to the next trip!