Fog Bowl 2016

The waters of Lake Columbia along the Wisconsin River near Portage, are heated by Columbia Energy Center power plant to more than 80 degrees. The lake stays open and warm no matter how cold a Wisconsin winter can be.  On the first of the year, a group of canoeists and kayakers from around the state head over to the heated lake to welcome in the year with a New Year’s day paddle.

Now, I’ve been doing this annual paddle for 10 years and things have really changed. Kayakers have gotten older. The large groups of 40 to 50 paddlers has dropped to around 10 and there really isn’t any advanced promotion or advertising of this even to speak of. It’s too bad too. I think there are probably a lot of younger paddlers out there who would love to join in for a bit of a frozen kayak adventure with food and drinks afterward… IF us old fuddy-duddys would be a bit more inclusive. If we want to grow interest in paddling and keep outdoor recreation alive, we have to be.. as my friend in Madison likes to say, “Evangelists”…. Something to think about…

Anyway, since we have to be back to Baraboo for an evening First Day Snowshoe as well, we have to be on the lake and off, before the rest of the group shows up.  I hope you enjoy the video which offers just a bit of what a winter paddle on Lake Columbia is like.


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