If your calling is kayaking, speedboating or swimming, Emigrant Lake can be your wet retreat.
The cool green lake off of Highway 99 is home to water sports fanatics of all stripes. Toward the end of the summer, the lake level plummets, but its size and versatility still beat any pool. And when summer dwindles down to a stopping point and autumn enters the valley in all of its red-leaved glory, Emigrant Lake stays in full swing.
There's no better way to celebrate the end of a carefree season than a barbecue underneath one of the lake's rentable shelters. (Call the Jackson County parks business office at 541-774-8183 to reserve one.)
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Before the water gets too cold, you might want to get in a few sessions of paddleboarding, which is a mix of surfing and kayaking. Kokopelli River Center, 2475 Siskiyou Blvd., rents paddleboards for $30 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. or $21 for noon to 6 p.m.
Any way you want it, Emigrant Lake is a fun summer — and maybe even fall — hangout.
Amelia Covert Zeve, 13, is an Ashland-based writer and wilderness enthusiast who attends Willow Wind Community Learning Center. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.