There are plenty of places to put in around Cordell Hull Lake. I stopped right in front of Defeated Elementary School and put in. The water was in perfect condition. I did not have much time so this was an abbreviated trip.
It took about an hour and a half to make a loop from Woodard Brothers (beside school) to Martins Grocery (across from the entrance to the campground.) The only disturbance I had was a family fishing just as I put in but they did not care because I was quiet and went around their lines.
This is a great sport for beginners to either kayaking or canoeing. When I made the turn at the entrance to the campground there were a few people there but we did not bother each other.
All in all a great little trip to kill an afternoon!
Woodard Brothers has drinks, gas and things like that.
Martins Grocery makes sandwiches, has gas and has live bait if you plan to fish also.
No permits if there is no motor on your vessel.
from I-40: exit #258 towards Carthage. Keep on that road for about 10-12 miles. You will go through Carthage and turn right on Highway 80 in Tanglewood. You then go just a couple of miles and turn right onto Highway 85. This will take you to Defeated. You will pass the entrance to the campground and then see Woodard Brothers store and Defeated Elementary. There is a place off the side of the road to park a vehicle and a little grassy park. Cannot miss.