Hoosier Canoe & Kayak Club

FW/SK: Summit Lake First of Spring Paddle

  • 19 Mar 2017
  • Summit Lake State Park, 5993 N. Messick Road New Castle, IN 47362

Summit Lake Early Spring Paddle   
Trip Sponsor: Jim Eckerty

It’s Spring!  It’s Spring!!   Come celebrate on the water with us!!!

Once again, we will paddle Summit Lake on the first weekend of spring as we have done for the past few years.  Summit Lake is the major feature of Indiana's 19th state park.  Established in 1988, 800-acre Summit Lake was formed by damming Big Blue River and other smaller tributaries.

Since we are meeting at the boat ramp, you will be able to launch your canoe or kayak from the dock, concrete ramp or shoreline.  This early in the season, there will be no gate fee but you will need a 2017 State Park Boat Permit.  
Paddling Conditions:  Summit Lake is very near the highest point in the state (hence the name Summit) so please be aware that wind and waves can be moderate...1-2 feet depending on the weather.  Given this, a spray skirt is recommended.  

In addition, the air can be cool to cold at this time of the year but the water is cold so be sure to dress accordingly.   Bring a dry bag with a change of clothes just in case.  Water temperatures will likely be below 40 degrees Fahrenheit so getting wet could be lethal (see below)

Water Temperature



Survival Time

32.5 to 40 degrees


15 to 30 minutes

30 to 90 minutes

PLUS, due to the extreme conditions, you should be an experienced paddler to take this trip and sit on top style craft are discouraged.  To be safer, we will most likely paddle as a group around the edge of the lake and lunch near the dam.

Meeting time: 1:00 pM

Length: 2-3 hours, 6-8 miles  

Contact Information:
  Jim Eckerty  rentbsu@comcast.net
Please let me know by 6:00 pm on Friday, March 17 since I will check out the lake before the trip.  In the past, ice subsided just in time for our trip and I will monitor this situation as needed.  In the last few years, we have had good weather and a great day so cross your fingers and dust off your gear........

Location:   Summit Lake State park is located northeast of New Castle and southeast of Muncie. From Mt Summit, IN (Highway 3 and 36 intersect here) travel 4 miles east on Highway 36 to Messick Road and then north 1 mile to the park.   To get to the boat ramp, pass the gate house and turn right at the first “T”.   Rest rooms at the dock/put-in have been open for use on our past trips and we assume they will be available again this year.
    GPS (Latitude, Longitude):   40.02097, -85.30126 or 40°1'15"N, 85°18'5"W
    Address:  Summit Lake State Park, 5993 N Messick Road, New Castle, IN 47362

Hoosier Canoe & Kayak Club

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