Unfortunately, it doesn't look like we'll have time to go kayaking or biking this week. (We're in the midst of a major kitchen remodel...lots of decisions to be made and workmen to boss around.) But I am planning to take breaks occasionally to share information with you about some of our previous paddles. First on the list is Dubes Pond in Hooksett.
It's hard to believe when you're out on Dubes Pond that you're just a short ten-minute drive from Manchester (our largest city). When Doug and I kayaked here on a weekday in July 2007, we saw only one other boat. There's limited shoreline development and virtually no traffic noise.
At first, Dubes Pond seems small, but it actually has a number of coves and islands to explore. In summer, you'll see fragrant water lilies and lots of other water plants. We also saw some great blue herons and a large heron rookery at the far end of the pond. (Please keep your distance from the rookery, particularly during nesting season.) While we weren't there at the right time of day to see beavers, we did see some of their lodges.
All in all, Dubes Pond is a great way to spend a few peaceful hours on a summer's day. For me, it's one more reminder of the natural treasures that are so close if we just take the time to look around.
Things to Know Before You Go: There's a small picnic area at the boat launch. As you first set out on the water, you may see flags or buoys set out for water skiing. Once you get past those, you should be on the lookout for granite boulders...Dubes Pond has quite a few.
Directions: From Manchester, take Routes 3/28 north and turn right onto Route 27. The boat access is on the left, 2.3 miles beyond the junction with Bypass 28. You can drive up to drop your boat off and then park in the lot across the road.
Note: I published a slightly different version of this article on www.paddling.net. Be sure to check them out for some great trip reports from other kayakers.