I bought a canoe, for the girls and I. It was older, small, built-in the 70’s. I remember, I had to have my dad come pick it up with the truck. I was ecstatic, and so were the kiddos. We always had to borrow the truck to take out our canoe. Papa never minded, always happy to see us on an adventure. However, it’s where our canoe took us for this story though.
My adventurous mother, and her likewise sister, aunt Linda invited us on a “boy scout canoe”. An overnight paddle trip complete with an island stay. We were excited. A trip paddling the mighty Columbia river. They had grown up in Rice, wa. and had spent a lot of time on the river. Henceforth my children and I also were very fond and frequent to the Columbia.
We put our little canoe, with all our supplies in at Bradbury beach. I wasn’t sure what to bring, so we kind of overdid it. Sometimes the waves would wash into our heavy laden canoe. The river can be rough and both days we had some whitecaps.
Headed off to Barnaby island. Lake Roosevelt is managed by 7 different agencies. On the east side you can camp almost anywhere with some restrictions. On most the west side you need a permit from the reservation. So we had to obtain a 10$ permit to camp on the island.From Bradbury beach to Barnaby island is only a 6 mile or so stretch.Map-of-Lake-Roosevelt-National-Recreation-Area. I believe Calysta was about 9 at the time we had this adventure. She paddle liked a pro though, always inspiring me. We made plenty of stops and swam around, of course lots of snacks.
Barnaby island was beautiful, however people had left toilet paper all over the north end. Which really seemed a shame as the floating bathroom is only a quarter of a mile away. Boaters are required to carry a marine sanitation toilet to stay the night. We were paddling so we just had to paddle over to the bathroom.
We camped the night at a lovely beach. The next day we paddled another 6 miles to Daisy boat launch. The fees were 7$ for a seven-day parking pass, and we had left cars at both ends. I didn’t know at that time that this trip would inspire me to paddle all of lake Roosevelt. It was beautiful and peaceful. The kind of thrumming monotony that soothes your soul.