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Canuding on Lake Nickajack Report.

July 2004

Canuding on Lake Nickajack, near Chattanooga, TN July 2004. "Gone Paddling" (my nude hiking buddy) had been trying to get me and my wife to try kayaking, but recently he had hurt his arm and could only canoe on slow-moving water. So, he suggested a week-day outing on Lake Nickajack, a TVA lake just outside Chattanooga. We agreed.

The Beach Mom of San Onofre, who now resides near Chattanooga also agreed to go and acted as our group coordinator. She is quite an organizer! Gone Paddling’s wife had to work, but he brought a family friend who wanted to try nudism. A Chattanooga couple was also invited, but again the wife had to work, but the husband, Gary, agreed to come and bring two kayaks. Gone Paddling brought two canoes.

On the appointed morning, the six of us met at the houseboat of a nude friend of Beach Mom’s. It was a convenient central point to meet, though he couldn't go with us. He was able to advise us where we could safely do some skinny-dipping in one of the coves. So, off we went to the camping area and boat ramp.

It took a while to unload two kayaks and two canoes and load them full of gear, coolers, and all the things six people can pull out of car trunks and SUVs. Beach Mom and I decided to canoe together in one canoe and thought we’d be slower than the experienced kayakers, so we started out while the others were still getting ready. It was a little before noon. Beach Mom and I had the food for the picnic lunch, so didn’t mind the idea of getting separated from the rest. We knew they’d have to find us! LOL

The day was warm and sunny. The lake water was smooth. We paddled towards the cove where our houseboat friend had pointed out on the map that would be safe for us. Just casually paddling along ahead of everyone else was enjoyable, not being in a rush. We talked about the nude gatherings each of us had been able to attend. Part way along a HUGE pleasure boat heading upstream passed us by, far off in the middle of the channel. We were drooling over the idea of a group of nudes having the run of that boat!

A while after it had passed, we were greeted with large rolling waves from its wake, rocking us too and fro in a fun way. Soon, we were around a spur of land and out of sight of our compatriots, who seemed still involved in getting themselves underway back at the boat ramp, though we could barely see them in the distance. We began to watch out for a sandy beach or other place for some sunning and relaxing, but all we saw was steep shores of red clay, and rocks, and flotsam and jetsam. So, we kept paddling along, and passed a family in a fishing boat, anchored and fishing near a bank.

We passed the first cove, which did not look promising, and continued on to the next, which was much, much "deeper" inland. The rest of our group had not caught up to us yet, so we continued our exploring into the cove. We were secluded enough that Beach Mom soon dropped the top of her swimsuit and canoed topless.

Far in the distance we could see a lone figure on a parked jet ski in "our" cove. We continued along in that direction, and kept checking the shore line for an inviting spot. None. After a while, we came closer to the jet ski and the figure moved around a bit. Was someone doing a little nude sunbathing on a parked jet ski? We couldn’t tell, but eventually saw that it was a man, and he may have been slipping on his swim trunks, or was it just his life jacket?

He fired up the jet ski and started out of the cove, but we waved him over. Beach Mom told him not to leave on our account, and then said we were looking for a place to skinny dip, but our friends had not caught up with us yet. He said he was heading out, but would tell our friends where we were.

Beach Mom and I canoed around the cove, me still in the swim trunks I started in, but her topless again. There were no sandy beaches to stretch out and sun on. While we were still investigating, the rest of our armada arrived, the other canoe and two kayaks. We all decided that we would make do with some big rocks jutting out into the water. We parked all the vessels between the rocks and muddy bank, and started stripping.

The water was cool in an inviting way after the paddling. We just swam around the rocks for a short while to cool off, then climbed back up for a picnic lunch of sandwiches, potato salad, chips, tea, and conversation in the nice sunshine.

Our jet ski fellow came back into the cove to advise us where a cave was that we had asked about. He didn’t mind our state of undress in the least. We should have thought to invite him to join us for a sandwich and a swim, but our hospitality failed us.

After lunch, we swam and floated on the life vests and just talked. I floated on an air mattress I had brought along, and could have fallen asleep. Our little outing seemed like a success.

Finally it got to be time to head back and get out of the sun. We switched our boats and paddling partners. I got a kayak for the trip back. I had never been in a kayak! It seemed very "tippy" at first, but soon I adjusted and took off. The kayaks were "touring kayaks," a bit longer, steadier, and easier to steer than the whitewater kind. Thank goodness.

We arrived back at the boat ramp and loaded up. Before leaving, we all decided to take a swim in the official swimming area to cool off again. This had to be clothed, but it still felt good.

It was about 4:30 Eastern Time and Gone Paddling and his friend had to head back towards Knoxville. Gary had to head home too. But Beach Mom invited me and MJ back up to her house for a nude dinner on the porch. That was on our way home, so we were glad to accept. We called another Chattanooga couple who could not canoe because of working, but they announced they could come for dinner. Including Beach Mom’s daughter, that made six of us.

Beach Mom has an absolutely beautiful newly-built cabin in a remote area on a mountain top, with a covered porch all the way around. She also had someone coming to pick out a puppy from a litter, so we had to stay dressed, but not for long, as that visit soon was over. Right after that, the Chattanooga couple arrived. Soon, we all had had tours of the new house and had gotten out food for a nice nude dinner out on the porch. It was fun to get to know Gary and Peggy, two new nude friends. During dinner, a deer walked across the yard and into the forest. There were NO insects. It was pleasantly cool. That’s what a nice evening it had become, after a nice day.

All too soon, it was time for us to hit the road for the drive home. We certainly plan to do this outing again, sooner rather than later, we all hope!

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