Tuesday, September 22, 2015

lily bay 2015...naming the islands

I have mentioned my love for Lily Bay State Park on Moosehead Lake.  Here.  And here.  Oh, and here too.  Yes, I do love it there.  

Each year we return to camp there.  And each year there seems to be a bit of a different focus for our time there.  This year, we strapped a couple of kayaks atop our already overloaded minivan and headed north.  

Our campsite was right on the water, and on the side of the campground that faces out into a small inlet, rather than facing out into the open lake.  

And so, there was this inlet to explore in the evenings while dinner was made and games were played and the fire was built to warm wet bodies.  It was explored by foot (where one left Croc was lost to the muck and never seen again) and by boat and sometimes by swimming.  The inlet was full of the ghost trees of Moosehead Lake, and stumps and logs and branches, some there so long that new growth was using it as its earth.  Making islands, in the miniature.

We were taken with these inlet small islands, and started naming them.

Moss Island.

Loch Ness Island.

Log Island.

Pretty creative names, eh?  The open lake needed to wait until the next day.  When we would be well fed, better rested, and when the bugs weren't as hungry we were.

The next day was gorgeous.  Blue and warm, the lake calm, which it isn't always, we have discovered.  We headed out of the inlet.

And out onto the open lake.

First stop was the first island we came to.  It was small, with a couple of rocky beaches.

Perfect for a picnic and a swim.  And once the picnic was spread we sent the strong paddlers amongst us back for the potato chips.  Because sometimes picnics need chips.  And sometimes teenagers need their picnics and their happy days to include chips.

They were back, remarkably quickly.  Because teenagers are well motivated by hungry stomachs when lunch is back across the lake on an island.

Well fed and cooled by a cold lake swim.  And we were off again, aiming our kayaks toward the next island.  Leaving Picnic Island behind.

The next island had an osprey nest.  So we got close, but not so close that we made anyone nervous.  Human or bird of prey.  I mentioned the teenagers.  

Two islands almost, but not quite, touching.  Elliott named it Friends Who Are Trying To Hold Hands Island.  The rest of us called it Osprey Island.

It was shallow near the islands so we got out and repositioned ourselves and switched up who was paddling.

I got lucky with my trade.

From there, we headed to what we have named Blueberry Island.  It wasn't so far from Osprey Island.

It is the island we have waded to in years past, having hiked down a trail from our campsite on the other side of the park.  It felt strange to approach it by lake instead of by land.

Again small, its rocky shore is filled with water worn and sun bleached trees.

And, as perhaps its name reveals, the banks are covered in wild blueberries.

The island has one trail that runs down its center like a spine.

While I filled my hands with berries, the kids did what they do.  They rolled their kayaks.  Of course.

I don't really know why.  This inspired others.

And confused the local residents.

But I was enjoying the berries.

Before long, the light was changing, and we needed to think about heading back.  So we island hopped back, from Blueberry to Osprey to Picnic.

Once close to our campsite's inlet, the silly antics began again.

Julia named this last island Small.

And pretty soon, Nicholas was pointing his kayak in toward our site.

And we were back.

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