Kenai Lake is a gorgeous body of water tucked deep within the heart of the Kenai Peninsula (yet still easily accessible by road). I started my trip at the Quartz Creek Boat launch, from which I turned south, enjoying the typically beautiful Alaska scenery of mountains and glaciers.
Bald Eagles frequent this area, and you can often see their white heads popping out from the green pine trees that line both banks of the lake. Though this is a large lake that I'm sure can stir up some severe current at times, during my trip the water was glass, with nary a ripple on the surface save when a fish rose to devour an insect. As I continued to paddle south for about five miles a beautiful green island opened up in front of me. I knew from the map that this was called "Porcupine Island" and decided to beach on the island to explore.
I circled the island until I found a suitable spot, and I noticed that the geology of the island was jagged, squared off sedimentary rock�quite a contrast from the remainder of the area. On this island the trees are compacted as tightly as in the Amazon, and I could not penetrate more than ten feet into the woodline.
I observed bald eagles, squirrels, and many unidentified birds (no porcupines and thankfully no bears though). I returned to my boat and began the paddle back to the quartz creek boat launch. When I got back my GPS said it had been a 15 mile paddle, but it went by like nothing. I would highly recommend this float to anyone who wants to experience Alaska but does not feel quite up to the challenge of the open ocean yet.
The Quartz Creek boat launch sits in a fairly modern campground with toilets and power hookups.
For full services you will have to drive either north to Girdwood or south to Seward.
From Anchorage proceed south on the Seward highway about 100 miles until coming to a sign for the "Sterling Highway". Turn right onto the Sterling Highway and proceed west for about five miles. You will see a sign for the Quartz Creek boat launch. Turn left at the sign and proceed about 500 meters on quartz creek road to the boat launch area.
Google Earth is all you need
- Trip Duration: Day Trip
- Sport/Activity: Kayaking, Canoeing
- Skill Level: Beginner
- Water Type: Flat/Sheltered Water