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Porta Bote Adventure at Canyon Lake (Tonto National Forest, Arizona)

Maya
  • On November 19, 2013

This is our first adventure on our Porta Bote (Portable Folding Boat). Excited! We had passed by Canyon Lake just yesterday driving through the Apache Trail Scenic Byway. We’re so happy that this 12-ft folding boat fit on our Thule SUP racks, plus the accessories and a 6-hp motor fit in the back of the Mini Cooper. Amazing!

Address

About 14 miles northeast of Apache Junction on Arizona State Hwy. 88 (historic "Apache Trail").

Distance Traveled

22 miles from Monte Vista RV Park

"Canyon Lake, about 40 miles east of Phoenix is one of the four lakes created by dams on the Salt River. The others are Roosevelt Lake, Apache Lake and Saguaro Lake. Canyon Lake is the smallest of the four, but probably the most picturesque. Unusual rock formations, scenic red rock canyon walls combine desert flora create its southwestern natural beauty." –Arizona Visitor’s Guide

Here’s a few pictures from our outing:

The drive to Palo Verde Recreation Site…

PIC: Palo Verde Recreation Site

Plenty of parking on this November day…

Setting up the folding boat…

PIC: Mini Cooper and the Porta Bote

PIC: Mini Cooper and the Porta Bote

PIC: 2 Shakas for setting up the Porta Bote

PIC: Bill rolls the Porta Bote down the Canyon Lake boat ramp

Compare the size of our Porta Bote to the other boater. We’re so proud of our little boat and we didn’t need a trailer to get it here.

PIC: Bill pulls the porta bote to the end of the dock.

PIC: Maya keeps the porta bote from floating away...

Let’s start exploring…

PIC: The beauty of Canyon LakeDolly Steamboat which is only $22/pp (Scenic Tour) to $65/pp (Twilight Dinner Cruise).

PIC: Dolly Steamboat on Canyon Lake

Not only beautiful country but wild Bighorn Sheep, too… couldn’t believe I was able to spot this guy way up in the distance! Movement or his white butt gave him away.

PIC: Wild Bighorn Sheep at Canyon Lake

PIC: Wild Bighorn Sheep at Canyon Lake

We pause with a few kayakers to observe the wild bighorn sheep.

PIC: We pause with a few kayakers to observe the wild bighorn sheep.

PIC: We pause with a few kayakers to observe the wild bighorn sheep.

PIC: We pause with a few kayakers to observe the wild bighorn sheep.

I’ve never steered a boat before… it’s fun and not so stressful when there aren’t a huge amount of other boaters.

PIC: Maya steers the porta bote for the first time.

I also take a stab at rowing the porta bote. I didn’t do half bad. I think we would’ve gone farther and faster if we didn’t have the 6-hp engine dragging us down but I love the horsepower when my arms gave out only after 10-15 minutes of rowing.

PIC: Maya takes a stab at rowing the porta bote

There’s the car bridge at Apache Trail Arizona Route 88 which we crossed getting here.

PIC: Bill with the backdrops of the car bridge at Apache Trail Arizona Route 88 over Canyon Lake in Tonto

QUESTION: Where are some of the best places you’ve taken a boating trip?

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