Today's adventure was a peaceful kayak of McCloud Reservoir. This reservoir was formed by the damming of the McCloud River which flows in at the eastern reach along with other small creeks that feed the McCloud River System. The elevation is about 3000 feet and the lake covers about 520 acres. It is about 6 miles long by 1/4 mile wide and defined by the rocky canyons that form the basin. The reservoir weaves and bends around these walls. The reservoir is a popular lake for fishing and holds the McCloud River Red band Trout along with introduced rainbow and brown trout. This entire Mt. Shasta area prides itself on the pure water found throughout the area. The water comes from the snow melt of Mt. Shasta and is filtered through deep layers of lava. The taste of the water is clean and crisp with no aftertaste. It is crystal clear and the best we have ever tasted. One can easily see the bottom of the reservoir in many areas. The primary vegetation lining the canyon walls is second growth mixed conifer and white fin ponderosa pine.The red soil is everywhere. It is a pristine setting. The air temp was in the lower 80's by days end. The water is about mid 50's except near the source where it is ice cold. We paddled about six miles with a break for snacks on the shore where Huckleberry Creek fed the reservoir. When we relaunched we paddled around the corner and much to our surprise a magnificent and opulent castle like estate appeared right before our eyes. It was buried in the shoreline vegetation in an area of the reservoir usually inaccessible because of much lower water levels. This year the water levels are high because of the heavy spring rains. We later found out that this is the hidden retreat estate of the Hearst family and is used regularly by them. It is in part an old Irish Cathedral torn down and rebuilt here. A lodge like structure is joined to the cathedral. There are also several outlying buildings. Security cameras were everywhere as well as no trespassing signs. On the return trip from the reservoir Bill and Nancy were shocked by the sudden appearance of a massive black bear which raced across the approach highway in front of their car. The bear and the Wolfs were unharmed but shaken!! We had lunch at Andaman-a Thai Restaurant. Fabulous freshly prepared Thai food. I had a wonderful vegetable oyster sauce with chicken over rice shaped like a starfish. I also had a crab Won Ton and Thai soup. Mt. Shasta City is a very beautiful and eclectic little village. The RV park is one of our favorites for beauty and peace.

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