June 30, 2013
by Will Blumentritt
Trip report – Greens Bayou – From East Mt Houston Road to Greens Bayou Park.
Since early February, I have been looking at Greens Bayou above Brock Park. It looked to me like it was navigable. So I finally put out a notice on the HCC Forum and John Ohrt responded. Thursday evening, I drove up to Rio Bravo to scope out the water level and an acceptable put-in. Everything looked good.
John and I met up at Greens Bayou Park shortly before 7:00 AM, added his boat onto my car, and we headed up to the put-in just across the street from Rio Bravo.
We were in the water by 7:30 AM with full shade for much of the first two hours. The GPS showed about 60ft elevation on the Bayou and Greens Bayou Park, at the take-out, is tidal. Unlike Saturday’s “feels like” 105 degrees, Sunday’s temperature was about 10 degrees less.
The water level was about as low as you would want to paddle in the upper parts, with occasional lightly dragging the bottom in the ripples. The gage up at IH-59 (08076000) – well upstream of our put-in – showed about 25 CFS. The water appeared to both of us to be about 6-8 inches lower than median, and the gage seemed to reflect that as well. However, there is one downed tree. On this trip, we were able to duck under the tree, but 6-8 inches of water would have made a big difference. (River right might have worked.)
I followed John during the picture taking portion of the trip – from put-in to where Halls Bayou flows into Greens Bayou. This portion was very quiet, cool, and peaceful – a very pleasant experience. I will definitely take this trip again.
From Halls Bayou on down, the trip was just a lot of flat-water strokes. No headwinds. Up to Halls Bayou, we had a moving avg of ~2.4 mph. After Halls Bayou, we picked up the pace, ending the trip with a 3.2 mph moving average.
We took a brief look at the new canoe launch at Thomas Bell Foster Park. The tide was down. We were somewhat surprised at the amount of abrasive white rock leading from the car turn-around to the water, as well as the steepness of the bank with no steps. Once you get your boat in the water, you’re OK, but I sure don’t want to drag my boat on the rocks. (I think I’ll stick with Greens Bayou Park.) Thomas Ball Foster Park doesn’t open until around the end of the year, although at least one shuttle service does run trips out of there.
Put In Time: 7:30 AM
Take Out Time: 12:08 PM
Total Distance: 12.3 miles
Moving time: 3:53
Stopped time: 0:45
Total trip time = 4:38
Moving average: 3.2 MPH
Overall average: 2.6 MPH
Water about 8 inches lower than normal
Gage at Hwy 59 read 25 CFS
|The author, Will Blumentritt