Dallas Downriver Club

Spring Fling at Caddo Lake

This trip has been cancelled due to flooding

Date: May 6, 2016 Sponsor: DDRC
River: Caddo Lake Trip Leader: Carolee Doty
Reach: Paddle Trails in the vicinity of Back Water Jacks Phone: 214-649-6410
Difficulty: Flatwater / Lake E-mail: la_sirena_84@yahoo.com
Rendezvous: Backwater Jack's RSVP - Not Required/camper reservations suggested
Campground: Backwater Jack's  



Trip Description:
Lets meet-up and paddle on Big Cypress Bayou, near Caddo Lake. We’ll meet at Backwater Jacks on Friday evening May 6th. This is one of the clubs favorite places to camp and paddle. If you haven’t been to Caddo Lake please try to make this trip. Enjoy the clear water, cypress trees, and Spanish moss - a really beautiful place to paddle. The plan is to paddle during the day and have a fun get together and dance at night in Backwater Jacks meeting room.

Between the paddling and dancing all your muscle groups will get a workout. Wear your “baddest” prom digs from the nearest thrift shop to the dance if you wish! You may just win “Best Dressed”

For meals: Saturday night pot luck theme hearty salad, home bread, deserts. Here is your chance to get creative –macaroni salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, fruit salad, etc…For the meat lovers bring your small grill and let’s have some BBQ.

Trip Leader is Carolee Doty - for any questions please contact her at 214-649-6410.

Gear requirements:
Just about any seaworthy canoe or kayak craft will do for this trip. PFD's (life jackets), paddles (a spare is recommended), a whistle or other signaling device, throw bag, tent, ground pad, sleeping bag, clothing for hot, cold, wet and dry conditions, camp chair, headlamp, plate(s), flatware, drinking cup, personal toiletries and other items that you may want to have with you. Please consider a small cooler for drinks and lunches.

Back-up Plans:
There are no backup plans – this trip will be cancelled in case of high water.

Driving Directions: 

Directions from Dallas:

From Dallas: Take IH-20 East to Marshall. Exit onto US Hwy 59, and then turn left (North). Follow US Highway 59 north through Marshall past US Highway 80. Take FM RD 1793 (right).  Stay on FM RD 1793 until you will come to the intersection of FM1793 / FM 134 (about 8 miles).  Take a right on FM 134 (south).  Travel about 2 miles you will come to a “S” curve with railroad tracks in the middle of the curve.  (You will know it when you see it!).  The blacktop road to your left is Long’s Camp RD.  Come down it until you see the river.  If you get wet you went too far.

ALTERNATE: Take IH-20 East to Marshall. Exit onto US Hwy 59, and then turn left (North). Follow US Highway 59 north through Marshall past US Highway 80. You can also take Hwy 43 East toward Karnack / Caddo Lake.  Stay on Hwy 43 until you see the FM RD 134  / FM 449 RD intersection. (about 15 miles) Turn Left onto FM 134.  Less than 4 miles you will see the railroad tracks and “S” curve.  Longs Camp RD is before the tracks to your right.  Stop when you see the river.


BAckwater Jack's


* International Scale of River Difficulty

Class I: Easy. Fast moving water with riffles and small waves. Few obstructions, all obvious and easily missed with little training. Risk to swimmers is slight, self-rescue is easy.

Class II: Novice. Straightforward rapids with wide, clear channels which are evident without scouting. Occasional maneuvering may be required, but rocks and medium sized waves are easily missed by trained paddlers. Swimmers are seldom injured and group assistance, while helpful, is seldom needed.

Class III: Intermediate. Rapids with moderate, irregular waves which may be difficult to avoid and which can swamp an open canoe. Complex maneuvers in fast current and good boat control in tight passages or around ledges are often required; large waves or strainers may be present but are easily avoided. Strong eddies and powerful current effects can be found, particularly on large-volume rivers. Scouting is advisable for inexperienced parties. Injuries while swimming are rare; self-rescue is usually easy but group assistance may be required to avoid long swims.

Class IV: Advanced. Intense, powerful but predictable rapids requiring precise boat handling in turbulent water. Depending on the character of the river, it may feature large, unavoidable waves and holes or constricted passages demanding fast maneuvers under pressure. A fast, reliable eddy turn may be needed to initiate maneuvers, scout rapids, or rest. Rapids may require "must" moves above dangerous hazards. Scouting is necessary the first time down. Risk of injury to swimmers is moderate to high, and water conditions may make self-rescue difficult. Group assistance for rescue is often essential but requires practiced skills. A strong eskimo roll is highly recommended.

Class V: Expert. Extremely long, obstructed, or very violent rapids which expose a paddler to above average endangerment. Drops may contain large, unavoidable waves and holes or steep, congested chutes with complex, demanding routes. Rapids may continue for long distances between pools, demanding a high level of fitness. What eddies exist may be small, turbulent, or difficult to reach. At the high end of the scale, several of these factors may be combined. Scouting is mandatory but often difficult. Swims are dangerous, and rescue is difficult even for experts. A very reliable eskimo roll, proper equipment, extensive experience, and practiced rescue skills are essential for survival.

Class VI: Extreme. One grade more difficult than Class V. These runs often exemplify the extremes of difficulty, unpredictability and danger. The consequences of errors are very severe and rescue may be impossible. For teams of experts only, at favorable water levels, after close personal inspection and taking all precautions. This class does not represent drops thought to be unrunnable, but may include rapids which are only occasionally run.

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Last updated April 25, 2016