Kayaking Trip to Crystal Lake & Swains Lake

By: Linda Duquette, GSA Stark Brewing Class of 2017
This trip took us to Crystal Lake in Gilmanton, NH
This lake is crystal clear – you can see so far down. The mountains surrounding this lake are breathtaking.  The boat ramp has plenty of parking and the ramp itself is easy put in and take out.  There is also the town beach heading down river just past the boat ramp which has dressing rooms and public facilities. You can use them from your kayak or after you’re done, you just have to park outside the park, which is on the road next to the boat ramp road.  The big part of the lake is easy paddle and there are a few sandbars. You can get out and swim and have lunch.  Again, all the land around the lake is private property.  

Swains Lake, Barrington N.H.
This lake is beautiful, and clean.  The boat ramp is easy put in and take out, but the downfall is the parking is very limited.  So you need to get there very early morning or late afternoon.  Also, there is no place to get out of your kayak or canoe, as all the property and islands are private property.  There is no public beach either.  The other thing about Swains is it gets very windy. There were actual whitecaps, which is very tough to paddle.