Trip Report    

Diablo Lake, Buster Brown Camp

Brutal paddle day on the afternoon of 7/8/2021. 16-20 mpr winds at 17 knots. It is best to explore the lake in the early morning and be off the lake by 1 pm in the afternoons. We experienced white caps, water funnels, water spays and extreme wind conditions. The power tour boats and boat shuttles add to the adverse conditions.

  • Wed, Jul 7, 2021 — Fri, Jul 9, 2021
  • Ross, Diablo & Gorge Lakes
  • Sea Kayaking
  • Successful
  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Day 1 

    Thunderstorms and lighting predicted.  Cloudy with light sprinkles.  Sun breaks after 4 pm.  Light wind 10-12 mph.  High water conditions.  Must be skilled at exiting and entering kayak from (high) floating docks.

    Day 2

    Sunny, light winds in the morning, 10-15 mph Moderate to difficult winds in the afternoon, 16-20 mph. With white caps, water sprays, water funnels, and wakes from power boats.  Area of most concern is the narrow channel between Hidden Cove and the NPS / Ross Portage Dock on Diablo.

    Day 3

    Sunny with winds 10-15 mpr.  Docked on some of the smaller rock islands to swim.

Parking near the Colonial Creek boat ramp is free but fills up quickly on the weekends.  

This adventure is rated #2 on my top 10 greatest adventures.  Had fun but it was a difficult paddle on day 2 with 16-20 mph winds in the afternoon.  Took 1 hour to paddle into the Ross Portage Dock and 2 hours to paddle out ( return to camp).

Wildlife:. Look for jumping trout, deer in camp and signs of bear activity (hair and droppings)

Lake water silt will clog some filters ( Sawyer straws) but not others ( katadyn okay). Creek water found at Buster Brown Camp but not at Hidden Cove Camp.

Some wildflowers.  Lots of birds singing.  

Bring ear plugs to sleep at night.  Snoring campers and noisy sleeping pads making paper bag crinkle noises at night.  The lake is quite at night.  Not like camping near a loud river or rushing creek ( white noise).

Several people had dogs.  Other campers, not our group.