First Paddle at Clough State Park

Clough State ParkMy favorite season is finally here! It’s so invigorating to finally experience the sensory extravaganza that spring brings. I don’t think I’ll ever get enough of seeing all of the budding trees, smelling the fragrance from the new flowers and grass, feeling the relief from a sweet breeze against the sun’s warmth, hearing the symphony of birds chirping, and tasting a brisk iced coffee while leaning out of the driver’s side window.

Everett Lake at Clough State Park in Weare is absolutely full of charm. Whether you’re looking to lay out on a beach,  picnic by the water, or take an energizing swim this is the perfect springtime park. I couldn’t have picked a better place to dust off my kayak!

I began my experience by snacking on an apple at a beautiful picnic area which was sandwiched between the parking lot and the beach. From this shady vantage point, I saw the entire lake to the west, the Everett dam to the south, and the beach which gave me a great idea for how to start my adventure.

The view from the picnic table

After scouting (and eating), I then jumped in my kayak, launching from the beach. First I paddled toward the northern side of the lake, which is dominated by shallow marshy canals, secluded nooks, and small lagoons. Keep an eye out for camouflaged picnic tables along the shoreline if you’re looking for a picnicking area that’s more off-the-beaten-path.

Straying from the shallows, I worked my way toward the center of the lake to get a full 360-degree view of the park.

Clough State by Kayak

This was, by far, the most serene part of the adventure–the giant white pines surrounded me on all sides, a gentle breeze carried me across the water, small waves rippled against the side of my kayak, a hawk circled above, and I simply relaxed catching a free ride across the shimmering water to my next stop—the 900-square-foot beach.

Cough State by Kayak

 After landing, I climbed out of the kayak and steeped in the sun for a few minutes. The sand was cool, offering an ideal bed on a sun-drenched day. I dug my toes in, reached for my cooler and after a banana or two, I reclined into the cushioning sand underneath the cloudless sky. Even though there were others on the beach with me, we were spread out over such a large area that I felt like I had my own section. The park’s quiet peacefulness took over from there.

Clough State Park by Kayak

After lazing out on the sand, I decided to get active and hike my way over to the dam. At this point, I was wishing that I had my bike because the breadth of the trails became more apparent from the top of the 250-foot dam.

A view of the ATV and dirt biking trails alongside the dam.

Although I was disappointed with my decision to leave the bike behind, I was too stunned by the view to feel the pain of my own folly. From here, I saw the park in its entirety including the point where the Piscataquog River meets with the lake.


To conclude my visit, I sat at the edge of the dam looking out over the sparkling blue water trying (albeit impossibly) to capture all of this park’s wondrous beauty and thinking to myself, “Next time, I won’t forget my bike… or my bathing suit.

What’s your favorite season?

Click on the photos below


Andrew Reynolds

Howdy folks! My name is Andrew Reynolds. I've lived in New Hampshire for more than 4 years, and I recently graduated with a B.A. in Journalism from Keene State College. To put it simply, I'm a writer and photographer who loves everything about the outdoors--including but not limited to kayaking, mountain-biking, fishing, swimming, camping, backpacking, hiking, rock-climbing, picnicking, walking the dog(s), and meditating at a peaceful vista. If I had to describe myself (and, therefore, my blog) in three words, I would choose the following: curious, adventurous, and quirky. I think curious fits because of my interest and passion in learning and education, which pushes me to research on my own as well as talk to the experts about the science and history behind our environment (ecology, geology, biology, astronomy, etc.). Adventurous is representative because of my everlasting wanderlust and dedication to adventuring to the state's countless "hidden gems," tranquil day-trips, and other interesting escapades. Lastly, but most importantly, I chose quirky because of the perspective I like to offer through this blog. Being disconnected from our natural environment has intense consequences, not only for our personal health and sanity, but indirectly for the well-being of others--present and future. One of the biggest reasons for why I enjoy the outdoors so much is because it's the most satisfying way for me to break out of the bubble, stray from the hustle-bustle, and gather a fresh outlook on what's truly important in life. I hope that documenting and sharing my experiences in this blog will serve as a vehicle to inspire more people to understand, care for, and appreciate our environment, as well as the health of our planet and its inhabitants. Happy (and safe) trails everyone!

One thought to “First Paddle at Clough State Park”

  1. Looks lovely! I don’t live in the part of the state, but my family and I might make a day trip out of it. It looks like there are activities for all people of all age groups. Thanks for introducing this great place to me!

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