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Inspired by early-morning adventures on the quiet lakes and ponds in our home state of New Hampshire.

The Place That Inspired Us...

Kayaking & SUP in New Hampshire's Quiet Water

We call it "the 5am paddleboard." In the summer, I work from home, meaning that as long as I am "butt at computer" by 8:45am, wet hair or dry, makeup or no, I am officially not late. With the early morning sun peeking out around 5am, I've found that I can live an entire adventure before most people have had their first cup of coffee. My favorite way to do that is to break out my SUP (or sometimes kayak) and hit the water at 5am. The coffee - well, tea, technically, since I'm more of a tea person - comes with me in a steaming thermos to enjoy on the water! 

When my alarm goes off around 4:30am, I predictably roll over, wondering why I'd actually choose to forego three additional hours of sleep to drive a half hour to Lake Pawtuckaway, manually inflate my SUP with the equivalent of a bicycle pump, and paddle myself around for three hours before starting my work day. My mom wonders that greater intensity. She sometimes joins me and sometimes meets up with me for more humanely-timed paddles. But once I'm up and out, I start anticipating the small wonders that reveal themselves before the rest of the world has opened its eyes.

In the early mornings, I encounter so much more wildlife than when the lake grows busy. I've encountered a snapping turtle with a shell wider than my board dive lazily under a rock as a skimmed over the water on top of him. I've grown familiar with the resident bald eagle who, when he flies too close to the bridge, is mercilessly harassed by a group of crows. I've been entranced by two loons circling a group of fish right beneath by board. I've been alerted to the presence of wild blueberries on an uninhabited island by birds enjoying a feast in the branches next to a gorgeous but very shy heron wading in the reeds. The water is silky smooth at that time of day. Sometimes I'm enveloped in a white mist that rises slowly with the sun; sometimes the day breaks in bluebird fashion. Whatever I encounter, I'm never sorry I set the early alarm.


Favorite Spots:

  • Lake Pawtuckaway, NH for early-morning and nearby SUP and kayaking

  • Squam Lake, NH for 5am waterskiing (a different take on 5am paddleboarding!) and full-day paddling adventures

  • Lake Chocorua, NH for the outstanding mountain views


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