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South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? #14123242 09/08/21 11:26 PM
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Mindrop Offline OP
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I live in San Antonio and am looking for easy launch points that also have low risk. I've had some recent health problems that have left me weak and I'm working on rebuilding my strength. I want to go fishing in my kayak and use it to help gain back what I had lost, but I need to be smart and safe. I don't need to be calling for a water rescue because I got myself stuck in a place I could normally get out of or could have avoided in the first place. In the past, I've been blown off the larger lakes because the one thing I didn't check, was wind forecast and that was a fight to get back to a safe place at my current physical state.

I've thought about Lake Dunlop, as it shouldn't have the wind issue most of the large lakes will have, but that is a 3 mile paddle downriver, so the mileage has me concerned. I'd love to hit the upper Guadeloupe as I understand the water is usually calmer and shallow. I see people under the I-10 bridge west of San Antonio, but I can't tell if that is a place I can legally launch from. I'm always looking for the out of the way spots that should be calm. I've looked at Hoag Lake by Fort Inge south of Uvalde, but I can't tell if there is a place to launch or not. I've had my eye on Averhoff Reservoir on the Nueces River too, but I don't know the water conditions there either.

I love fishing quiet and out of the way spots and google earth has a ton of visible waterways, rivers, creeks, and ponds that are out of the way, but Texas' private property laws make things interesting and frequent droughts leave many of them dry or very shallow. I'd really love to hear suggestions for safe and fun spots, even if that means I can't go exploring like I want to. I can't afford to get ahead of myself and try to do things before my health complications. I didn't have much kayak experience back then, but plenty of canoe experience and water safety experience. I'll always wear a good life vest and I know the water can get chilly faster that most people realize, leaving you battling hypothermia, especially on some of the spring fed rivers that never warm up.

For reference, I have an Ascend 10T sit on top kayak. Pretty stable, but not fast in the water.

Thanks!

Last edited by Mindrop; 09/08/21 11:33 PM.
Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14123535 09/09/21 05:40 AM
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porta Offline
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Try the upper guadalupe $5 spot @ 281 at the metal bridge during slow days Tues or Wed, launch under the bridge and safe parking above the incline, but definately stay away from the weekend crowds. Best to go upstream all the way to the rapids if the water is not too low, that whole section shielded from high winds, and you can move to the side and stand on the bottom most places. Short section maybe 2 miles, good place to build your strength, and you can ride the current back down if you run out of power. Heavy use area is deserted mid week, not much to see or challenge, unless you portage above the rapids to practice runs when the water flow is good above 200cfs or so, flow is about 60 today. Keep an eye out should there be forecast of sudden heavy rains nearby and upstream as the flow can increase quickly and drop back just as fast. Lure fishing is usually fair at most, bait probably better though I don't use it myself (C&R for me). You can schedule better trips with them once you're up to full power.

Hope this helps.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: porta] #14123917 09/09/21 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by porta
Try the upper guadalupe $5 spot @ 281 at the metal bridge during slow days Tues or Wed, launch under the bridge and safe parking above the incline, but definately stay away from the weekend crowds. Best to go upstream all the way to the rapids if the water is not too low, that whole section shielded from high winds, and you can move to the side and stand on the bottom most places. Short section maybe 2 miles, good place to build your strength, and you can ride the current back down if you run out of power. Heavy use area is deserted mid week, not much to see or challenge, unless you portage above the rapids to practice runs when the water flow is good above 200cfs or so, flow is about 60 today. Keep an eye out should there be forecast of sudden heavy rains nearby and upstream as the flow can increase quickly and drop back just as fast. Lure fishing is usually fair at most, bait probably better though I don't use it myself (C&R for me). You can schedule better trips with them once you're up to full power.

Hope this helps.

Thanks! That helps a lot. Wednesdays are actually ideal for me with this semester's (grad school) schedule.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14125487 09/10/21 06:09 PM
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porta Offline
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Most places with easy access, having safe and legal parking is a necessary secondary consideration, unless someone can drop you off.

I haven't been to the $5 spot in at least 2 years, so I'm not completely sure if it is still possible to drive down to the River gravel to Launch ( no parking on gravel) using a pickup. But you can ask the manager to let you and look without having to pay. You should be able to get pretty close, it may require dragging your kayak a very short distance (30' or so) up to the incline upon returning. If that is not manageable, you might consider boat ramp #11 at the Rebecca Creek area, paddling can be done in the surrounding Creek area. But #11 is deeper, not as well protected from the wind, and it has less shade, a plus is better fishing. The Back Creek area at # 11 is quieter and more shallow, very busy holidays and weekends.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: porta] #14126559 09/11/21 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by porta
Most places with easy access, having safe and legal parking is a necessary secondary consideration, unless someone can drop you off.

I haven't been to the $5 spot in at least 2 years, so I'm not completely sure if it is still possible to drive down to the River gravel to Launch ( no parking on gravel) using a pickup. But you can ask the manager to let you and look without having to pay. You should be able to get pretty close, it may require dragging your kayak a very short distance (30' or so) up to the incline upon returning. If that is not manageable, you might consider boat ramp #11 at the Rebecca Creek area, paddling can be done in the surrounding Creek area. But #11 is deeper, not as well protected from the wind, and it has less shade, a plus is better fishing. The Back Creek area at # 11 is quieter and more shallow, very busy holidays and weekends.

Thanks for the suggestion. That is great info to know. I appreciate it.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14129160 09/14/21 05:35 AM
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The Kerrville lakes are easy access and good fishing. I caught around 20 bass up there in the 1-3 lb range a couple weeks ago late in the afternoon on topwater. Further up at Ingram is good also and easy access.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Lmgreeri] #14130734 09/15/21 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Lmgreeri
The Kerrville lakes are easy access and good fishing. I caught around 20 bass up there in the 1-3 lb range a couple weeks ago late in the afternoon on topwater. Further up at Ingram is good also and easy access.

I've not heard of these lakes. I'll have to take a look! Thanks.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14132238 09/17/21 12:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Mindrop
Originally Posted by Lmgreeri
The Kerrville lakes are easy access and good fishing. I caught around 20 bass up there in the 1-3 lb range a couple weeks ago late in the afternoon on topwater. Further up at Ingram is good also and easy access.

I've not heard of these lakes. I'll have to take a look! Thanks.


You'll like them. Very easy, low risk but still good fishing. Tough because some of those get heavy pressure and those fish have seen a few tricks. I've fished most all of the Guadalupe from Ingram down to James Keihl Park south of Comfort. I love that area.
Shoot me a PM when you're thinking of going, I might pop up and join ya.
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Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Lmgreeri] #14135817 09/20/21 03:51 PM
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Mindrop Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Lmgreeri
Originally Posted by Mindrop
Originally Posted by Lmgreeri
The Kerrville lakes are easy access and good fishing. I caught around 20 bass up there in the 1-3 lb range a couple weeks ago late in the afternoon on topwater. Further up at Ingram is good also and easy access.

I've not heard of these lakes. I'll have to take a look! Thanks.


You'll like them. Very easy, low risk but still good fishing. Tough because some of those get heavy pressure and those fish have seen a few tricks. I've fished most all of the Guadalupe from Ingram down to James Keihl Park south of Comfort. I love that area.
Shoot me a PM when you're thinking of going, I might pop up and join ya.
flag

Will do. I'm not surprised they have seen a lot of tricks. I really want to fish the Guadalupe, mostly because of the Guadalupe Bass. I know, they are not big, but there is something alluring to me about going after a species that only resides in a limited region. Rivers are fun too. I've got to figure out some stuff with Grad School, still not set a schedule, but my most available days are Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14135824 09/20/21 04:00 PM
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Canyon lake has several boat ramps and some may be free?

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14135990 09/20/21 06:46 PM
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I too live in San Antonio.

Lake Dunlap is a non starter unless you have a friend who lets you use their property to launch from. Otherwise it's put in from the 35. Three rapids sections, with portage required, over about 7.5 miles to the dam. Did that once, on the water for 12 hours. Never again. If you are strong enough for a several mile trip I would suggest putting in at the gas company property and going down to Mcqueeney.

Given your current status and goals here are my suggestions:

1. Converse Lake Park. This is the one on School St. It's a small body of water but has a shallow section with easy enough launch point. Fishing can be good as well. Recessed with hills, trees, and houses on all sides which keeps the wind down. I prefer this Converse Lake over number 2 below.

2. Converse City North Lake. Different than the first one, although nearby. Easy launch point, no current. A bit windy at times. Fishing is so-so, with an 11 pounder being caught periodically.

3. Cypress Bend Park in New Braunfels. Easy launch and the Park section has an easy going current. Fishing is good but lots of tubers on weekends.

4. Guadalupe State Park. Bit more calm river area than number 3 but the launch is not as easy and recovery is a pain.

5. Guadalupe River from the 35. Real easy and convenient launch and a good stretch without rapids. Good fishing, especially for sunfish. The current is definitely faster here at the launch than the previous 2 suggestions.

If you feel it safer, or just need someone to go with, hit me up. More than happy to join.

Last edited by David Newton; 09/20/21 06:51 PM.
Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14137078 09/21/21 08:23 PM
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Fort Inge around Uvalde is okay. Only open on weekend "IF" they feel like opening (if there's any hint of rain forget about it...). There is a ramp for trailered boats that you can launch from. The fishing is so-so.....more often you'll lay an egg, but occasionally see fish up to 5 - 6lbs come out. Averhoff, on the Nueces, has an easy launch point as well (ramp). It can get a bit crowded out there, but is not usually bad. The fishing quality is also so-so, again with an occasional bigger fish coming out. The Sabinal River, off of county road 187, has a couple of spots that are easy to access / launch, and the fishing isn't bad. If you're feeling adventurous, I'd recommend the Devils River at Baker's Crossing (past Comstock). Beautiful scenery, easy launch point, and tons of fish.

Re: South Central Texas easy launch points with low risk? [Re: Mindrop] #14138337 Yesterday at 02:02 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions! I'm looking at all of these and the ones I don't feel is doable yet I am putting in the future categories. It's good to see that I've got plenty of paddle buddies if I ask.

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