Today couldn't have been more perfect: perfect weather on Otisco, magnificent fall colors surrounding us, no motor boats on the water, and great turnout! Eleven of us (Daniel & Amy, Ben, Laurie, Don, Mike, and I from Ithaca, and Jeff B., Jeff H., Heather, and Nick from Rochester!) showed up for this beautiful paddle. After a few wrong turns, an incredibly steep hill, and some pungent overheated brakes, we all managed to meet at the causeway at the southwest end of the lake...
We headed back down the lake, encountering many waterfowl along the way (see slideshow above). We arrived back at the launch site a little after 5pm. Jeff B., Heather, Ben, and I decided to continue exploring beyond the causeway. The sun was starting to go down, and the fall colors were looking more vibrant than ever. At the south end of the lake we discovered the inlet creek, so we paddled up it until we couldn't turn our boats around anymore (dodging scary spiders and carp along the way). The creek winds through fields as opposed to the wetland/wooded inlets of other Finger Lakes.
After circumnavigating the south end of the lake, we paddled back through the little opening in the causeway. The conditions on the other side were drastically different. To the south end (down wind), the water was perfectly calm and wind-free. As soon as we passed through the opening we encountered a decent wind and chop - it was quite exhilarating! We got back to our cars just as it was getting dark. Much to my delight, Ben and I discovered (1/2 of) a delicious mint chocolate bar on my dashboard. What better way to end a day of kayaking?! Perfect, I say, just perfect.
Date: October 3rd, 2010
Weather: Sunny, 60 degrees, breezy - perfect!
Distance: 13.5 miles (9.5 to the top of the lake and back, and 4 miles exploring the south end)