Kayak #4, Buffalo Bayou, Hwy 6 to West Belt, May 11, 2020

My biggest bike/hike/kayak trip yet was to far west Houston.  I left my bike at the beltway and hiked west to Hwy 6 where I managed, with some difficulty, to get the kayak into the water where I discovered that the water was only a few inches deep.  For the next mile or so I had to hop out out every 100 feet and drag my kayak over logs, rocks and shallows.

Bike locked and ready to hike west to Highway 6.
Another log!
Dragging through the shallows
And over rocks.

Slowly, as side channels added more water, the depth increased and the portaging sections got farther apart.

Deeper water…finally!!
Pretty section of the bayou
Bayou waterfall!
Tree roots – obviously the water is higher sometimes.

The bayou had a lot of obstructions which generated some small rapids in a few places which added a bit of excitement and fun to what was, at the beginning, a real slog.

Following an egret east.

Got back to my bike after 6 or 7 miles of bayou kayaking where I began a long ride home.

Pull-out spot under the West Belt. Time to start biking home.


Kayak #3, Buffalo Bayou, Downtown to Turkey Bend, May 6, 2020

Biked up to downtown and entered Buffalo Bayou heading east. I took the Bayou to just west of Turkey Bend, where I started seeing commercial barge traffic and heavy industry on both sides of the Bayou.  The end of the Houston Ship Channel is only a couple miles east.

My hike/bike trailer system
Downtown view from the bayou
The Wortham Center (Ballet, Opera)
Ballet bridge over the bayou

As the bayou heads east it gets wider and deeper becoming a commercial waterway.

The bayou really opens up
Selfie time!
A “waterfall” on the bayou

I made it to just west of Turkey Bend where a large barge was being loaded with scrap metal and I turned back to a lovely little take-out spot with a nice dock.

View of downtown as I headed back to my pull-out spot
No mud! No rocks! A real dock!

From here I hiked back to my bike at the Sabine Bridge.

Kayak #2, Braes Bayou, MacGregor Park to Buffalo Bayou, May 2, 2020

For my second kayak trip I used my new bike trailer to bike down to MacGregor Park where I left my bike and started kayaking Braes Bayou east.  Braes Bayou is “channelized” west of here but from here east it is quite natural.

Put-in spot near Macgregor Park
Fairly clean water but some debris
Pretty spot

At one point I took a side channel through a culver.

Side channel


Pretty wild on the other side of the tunnel

I saw a little wildlife, mostly turtles and birds.

Some birds
Fishing bird

As the bayou nears Buffalo Bayou (within a mile or so) it opens up and becomes more industrial.

Working boat near Buffalo Bayou
Working barge about 1/2 mile from Buffalo Bayou

At this point I decided things were getting too commercial so I turned around and found a pull out spot in Mason Park.

Pull out spot in Mason Park

I packed up the kayak and humped back to my bike in Macgregor Park.