Monday, May 26, 2014

First Time Kayaking Island Pond

There are some rolling hills in the distance.
Today was our first time kayaking Island Pond in Stoddard, but it probably won't be our last. This place was actually "Plan B" for today. We headed first to Nubanusit Lake in Hancock on the recommendation of a friend. But when we arrived at Nubanusit, the waters were too choppy for our comfort level and there were quite a few power boats --so off we went to explore Island Pond, not too far down the road.

Loved the easy put-in!
Island Pond has an easy sandy put-in and a parking area for about a dozen cars right off Route 123. You'll hear some road noise when you first start out, but before too long you'll leave the noise behind. The pond has over 200 acres of water and about 20 summer cottages dotting its shores; we saw two smaller power boats and a number of other kayakers on this holiday weekend. So it's not as secluded as some of our favorite spots, but there's still plenty of room to spread out here.

The pond has a number of small islands and small channels, all set against a backdrop of picturesque green hills in the distance. Unfortunately, shortly after we got out on the water, the wind started gusting pretty strongly so we headed to a small protected cove to wait it out. After a long winter indoors, it was great just to be back out on the water, even if the weather conditions weren't ideal. We sat and watched a pair of geese and five tiny goslings for a bit, before heading back out to open water.

We paddled for maybe another 20 minutes before the strong wind gusts started up again and then it started to rain lightly. With threatening skies, we decided to paddle back to shore -- fighting a head wind that was pretty challenging at times. So Mother Nature didn't exactly cooperate for our first time out this season, but Island Pond looked like a great spot to spend a couple of hours. We'll be back!  

Directions: From Rte. 202 in Peterborough, take Rte. 123 North to Hancock. Look for the pond on your right shortly after the intersection of Rte. 9 and Rte. 123. There is a porta-potty here.