@ 240+ acres
I’m still not sure of the ‘rules’ with “Why” ‘Lake‘ precedes or sometimes follows the name… but Seed can be found represented as either, Lake Seed or Seed Lake.
Water clarity – 8+
Natural Quality – 7+
Perception – week day
Seed Lake’s water originates from the Tallulah riverbed and it is the second (sandwiched between lakes Burton and Rabun) in a series of hydro-power lakes (Burton, Seed, Rabun, Tugalo, Tallulah Falls, Yonah, and Hartwell) before entering the Atlantic via the Savannah river basin.
After paddling the other lakes of the Tallulah, and with this doggone hot summer behind – the cool night time breeze has been inspiration to begin some fall wandering. The quality waters of Tallulah, the rhododendron shoreline, and the character ridden boat-houses along the way are always a inspiration to contemplate – so why not?
It has to be better than work, at least thats what I was thinking this morning. I was a little surprised the 49 mile distance from home took 2-hours – but considering the bac roads and my ‘frame of mind’ – it was all good (“leave early, enjoy the ride”…).
Crossing the SC/Ga line, I saw lots of eager folks (above) anticipating a raft-trip on the Chatooga. Their float in the end will spill out onto Lake Tugalo – a fun day ahead for them (and a fine lake to paddle).
(GPS – Seed Lake rd, Lakemont, Ga)
Three miles beyond the Rabun Beach recreation area is where the public ramp of Seed lake can be found. It was 11am. At 240 acres (my benchmark for casual exploring is 500 acres or 20 miles – a day) I figured Seed to be a fairly casual paddle. Over the day I was surprised at how loooong the 240 acre lake felt – maybe it was somewhere in the 13-miles of shoreline – or just maybe my ez pace.
Considerations for the days paddle; as a fireman it was within my nature to search a smoke-charged room (no visibility) keeping the wall to my left, until our search mission was complete. In paddling, I have learned to be a little more adaptable. Sun (shade/photo’s), wind, current, tide, plus any other particularities of the area all play their part – one consistent ‘default’ for me seems to be the ‘headwaters.’ Other than picking up a turkey-sub at Subway I don’t think I ever considered any other factor for Seed besides “heading for the headwaters.” Always go to the headwaters, and then explore on the return – anything ‘beyond’ this – is pure bonus.
Seed is not a round or mundane lake – its a lake of length, once a deep gorge.
The boathouses are immediately apparent, each making a simple statement, each little island representing sovereign territory – an expression of individual charm and character – whether it be recent history or many summers lost.
Quietly paddling along the shade of the trees, the bass were easy to spot through the clear water, and there were the ever present Kingfishers and herons enjoying the fading stillness too.
I am intrigued by all boathouses, screened rooms of the past
as much as those with open decking.
The channel winds lazily as it narrows and sinks further towards Burton Dam.
Along the shore line just as on the Suwannee river, there were trot-lines dangling – but unlike the Suwannee’s fishing sets, the brush attached indicated these were clearly unattended.
Wood-ducks slipped under the rhododendron as I worked my way through their neighborhood – being upstream I expected more current – but little to none seemed present, just lingering stillness.
Through this quiet setting of less frequent boathouses, a cement – yet very dilapidated Crow Creek bridge appeared. The base of this old bridge shows large rock aggregate (old technique) used within the structure, long ago by-passed – it is slowly falling apart. The Tallahatchee Bridge song came to mind as I passed under.
Just under Burton Dam rd is of course, Burton Dam. In appearance it looks just like the others along this chain – old, and likely needing attention. I wonder about the natural sedimentation process that these and those dams out west have prevented – I’m still learning about the concern. Right now I just consider the glut of mud when/if one of these pilgrims fail – and with the age they are becoming……….
Over the morning I had seen two boats of fishermen – one for walleye’s and the other Bass fishing, none were present as I meandered back down river – searching for coves to explore – only one little ‘divit‘ on the return.
Earlier as I had paddled up to the waters of Burton Dam, there was what appeared to be a public beach on the far side – now on return (and in light rain) I investigated. Lake Seed campground, just like the sign mentioned at the boat-ramp, primitive camping was available on this lake. The area seemed quiet with small fire-pits, empty with the exception of a healthy-set of ‘Georgia-women’ (five). Each were grazing on a freshly grilled cheeseburger. One mentioned that on this date they were celebrating “their kids being back in school” – the beverage of choice looked inviting.
There was a whole ‘lotta woman standing around that concrete picknic table.
As I paddled away I smiled inside figuring that there was simply not enough beverage to ever change that perspective (and I hoped that they had a great time).
Passing back by the boat ramp it was 220p, light rain was falling and I had focus issues with my camera. On one trip paddling in the Okefenokee Swamp – I ‘lost’ (screwed up) almost all pic’s, hoped it wouldn’t happen again today – I’m pretty rough on a camera.
And as far as the rain went, not a big deal – rain simply reminds me of an original paddle buddy, Ruth Miller Olson. Paddlin in the rain was never given a second thought, and – thoughts of that warm (yet tenacious) spirit always leads me to find comfort when paddling in wet conditions.
More boathouses and a slightly larger body of water near the Lake Seed (Nacoochee) dam.
In turning back towards the landing, there were more boathouses around – I was a little disappointed at the few shallow coves there were to explore – but hey, I kinda knew from ‘googling‘ and researching the lake before coming – Seed is not a giant lake, just a looong one.
The heavy rains held back and my focus was a little clearer as I neared the boat landing – always one of my favorite places of cheap entertainment.
Three-twenty, an ez four and a half hour paddle – with a two hour ride ahead.
Other places to paddle;