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Lake Coleman in Texas

Trip Overview

It started out like any other trip to my Mom's for Thanksgiving. The kids were in a great mood for a long weekend expressing their love for one another as we loaded the CRV, "Boogerhead won't stop touchin'me!" "Nu-uh, she keeps crossing the line to my side!", "Booger-head", "Poopy-face", Argh! I should've been happy with just being an uncle.

I woke up the morning after Thanksgiving still about 80% bloated, but figured it would only help keep me upright. I headed south out of Abilene on St.Hwy. 36 and in about 45 minutes, I was sitting at the boat ramp, well, one of them anyway; they say the lake has 3 public and a mess of private ones. However, there was no chance of me driving around looking for them after seeing the way the locals were driving. I knew that the safest place to be was out on the water somewhere. Anywhere. Which turned out to be correct (minus the 2 extremely large folks in the white bass boat that was apparently manufactured with only 2 speeds: Idle and Mach 3). They kept trying to break the sound barrier pretty close to me staring with every pass as if they had discovered some endangered species not known to that area. After 5 or 6 passes and realizing that I wasn't stranded on a floating log, they became preoccupied with something shiny farther across the lake. You know what they say, "you have to think like a fish if you want to catch a fish", so hooray for shiny object that distracted Mr. bass boat.

I started out paddling in a northerly direction,where all of the rather cute lake houses lined the bank. Weaving in and out of tiny coves and around the private boat slips and party docks. About 9am or so, the wind started kicking around, nothing too bad for West Texas, about 10 to 15mph, still enjoyable. I paddled swiftly out a cove, turned the bow and enjoyed a wonderful drift back into the next one.

Man, this was great. I spent the next 3 hours just playing with the wind up and down the shoreline. The coots didn't care too much for the wind, it made them too easy to catch up too.

This lake is a lot like the lakes I grew up paddling all over New Mexico. (Whew, flashbacks).

Overall it was a great day to be a paddler. I noticed in the bigger boats around me that the fish were being drug in hand over fist. I might check out the fishing reports next time. This is a great stop for a fun time on some classic West Texas flatwater.

I'm gonna head back in the springtime. Any takers??


Coleman, TX has one small hotel, 20 miles from ramp.


No Fees


Coming from the south take 283 to 1274 then 3 miles to main ramp.
I came out of Abilene. From Abilene take 36 south to 283, turn right, go 11 miles to 1274, then 3 miles to main ramp.


  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: Flat/Sheltered Water
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip