It was a brisk morning. 10am and 39 degrees in South Lake Tahoe, one of our most favorite homes away from home! I’d watched the weather since I woke up at 6am when it was 31 degrees. I was hoping to get to the mid-forties by our launch time, but no chance. I dressed as warmly as possible as one can for a kayak. It was opening day on the lake and let’s not forget it was also May, late spring and not winter like it felt like. Kayaking Zephyr Cove was a first for both of us and we were excited and just slightly nervous.
You don’t get into a kayak, you basically sit on top of it and pray you don’t get the chilly lake water in it at any cost. Maybe mid-summer when the weather is in the 80’s and it would cool you down, but not this morning. The lake was quiet and pretty still, we were the first ones taking any kind of watercraft out on the water today. I was excited when I was offered a waterproof pouch to wear and hold my phone. This way I would be able to video and take pictures without fear that I’d lose my phone in the lake. We rented a two-person kayak for one hour and got settled into the kayak with help from the staff, were handed the paddles and were pushed off. We headed in a counter-clockwise direction from the right of the dock staying fairly close to the beach as we learned to balance our weight on the kayak. Here’s about 30 seconds of the beginning of our adventure, I do have my phone in the waterproof pouch, so the clarity is a bit foggy. Listen very close at the sound of peace and tranquility.
My husband’s seat was just a little off, he realized in hindsight, and wished he would have spoke up about it sooner. Adjusting it mid-paddle not only rocked the kayak but it also introduced cold water on his bottom. When that was going on in the first 10 minutes, we also realized we didn’t get offered life-vests, nor did we think of asking, so we were cautious. We are both able to swim if necessary, but that water is cold! As we got into the groove of things, we became calmer and more confident in our ride. We moved from along the shore out into the more open water and tried our best not to splash eachother with the paddles. The occasional sprinkle sure woke us up though! We had boundaries and were very happy to stay within them. We worked our way around a few “tree/rock islands” and took in the phenomenal views of the lake and the snow covered Sierra Nevada mountains. I got brave at one point and removed my camera from the pouch to get even clearer, crisper photos. A slight breeze picked up and slight ripples were felt the further out we paddled. The water was turning darker blue and it made me a little nervous so I put my phone back in the pouch and we paddled back where we could see more beneath us. Many times we could just stop paddling, sit back and float, and take in nature’s beauty, but I didn’t want to go to much farther out.
Half-way through our hour we made our way through an area with rocks above and below the water, the water is so crystal clear that it gives you a sense of security. But, also novice paddlers like ourselves were challenged by maneuvering through without hitting any and risk flipping the kayak. It was a great obstacle course and at one point I took my phone out again and filmed a quick video as we were balanced.
Thank goodness for the sun, it kept our bodies warm, but I admit that we both had frozen hands.
We made great time coming back to the dock. Kayaking Zephyr Cove didn’t feel rushed by any means and a one hour kayak adventure is a perfect amount of time to get used to the craft and the water. I think I wouldn’t have been as calm if we were to have chosen to ride individually, and it was a fun bonding experience trying to time our paddling! We look forward to doing this again and also more water activities on the lake when we come back in the late summer.
Pedal boats and stand-up paddleboards are also available for rent, as well as power boats, weekender boats, wave runners, water skis, kneeboards, wet suits and more!As we were leaving, the M.S. Dixie II passengers were getting ready to board their cruise that leaves from the same dock. So many fun activities are available at the Zephyr Cove Resort during the summer, for more information and pricing, visit http://www.zephyrcove.com/.
Our adventure was hosted, opinions 100% our own.