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Kayak fishing the Lone Star State...

I did my first Buffalo River trip in a kayak last week. The first three trips (2009, 2010 and 2011) were done by canoe. One thing I learned on this trip: floating a river is MUCH easier in a yak. On this trip we had eleven people; nine of us had yaks, and two shared a canoe (the canoe guys had never done a river trip before).

We started around 3 PM on Wednesday at Carver with the intention of pulling out at the Highway 65 bridge on Saturday; however, four people in our group took off from the rest of us and ended up at the take out point early Friday afternoon, so the rest of the group lost a much anticipated third night. We were literally "unhappy campers". We ended up finishing the 32 miles by 7 PM Friday.

The fishing was good. I caught a lot of perch, several small mouth bass, and a cat fish (this was my first time to catch a cat fish on this river).

We also saw an elk Thursday evening, which was the first time we had seen one on any of our trips. Around noon of the same day I saw a bald eagle. I've seen a few in the wild, but never up close. This one flew right above me at tree-top level, then circled around a few times. A group near us heard a bear close to their camp site. Glad it was them and not us.

Here are several pictures taken during the trip:


The outfitter loaded up nine yaks on a trailer built for eight. That's mine on the very top; I wasn't too thrilled about that.
Last edited by jpo_tx113 on Tue Jun 18, 2013 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I think cuda is right and that it is a mink. Either way still a great trip and wonderful pictures.

I order below is a long tail weasel, mink and river otter, the three species of the family found in Arkansas along with the American Badger.
Long-Tailed-Weasel.jpg (46.32 KiB) Viewed 2882 times


Despite your early take out still looks like a good time. Got to slow down on that river. Looks like the water was much clearer then when I was there a few weeks ago. Level was at 13' at HWY 65 when I went by and that was down ~6' already. The brim on that river seem to have such wonderful colors. Yep, that was a mink, seen them up there all the time. Interesting about the bear. I usually do hang my food in most all places I go and have been told there were some bears in the area but have never seen evidence. Certainly will make sure to hang my food while up there. Also, nice to get to see the Elk. I have seen them a couple of times but no lower than Carver, mainly from Boxley down to Pruitt.

Thanks for the post and the pics.


My Boy Scout troop was supposed to do a 50 mile trip on the buffalo last summer, but we came to a dead end after about 25 miles. The river just dried up, it was a big surprise for us. The stretch we did canoe was beautiful though and a lot of fun.
In early August some friends and I are paddling the lower Buffalo from Maumee South to the confluence with the White River. My only kayak is a 14' Jackson Cuda that I use for the coast. Is this too much boat for the river? Or is it wide enough and slow enough in the lower section that I don't need to worry about maneuverability?

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