Amazing Paddling Experience!!!

Well, I think it was amazing, hopefully you will too.

I have paddled alongside lots of different wildlife while kayaking…whales, seals, sea lions, dolphins, etc; however, yesterday I had a truly unique experience.

I was paddling in the Susquehanna river. I saw a group of what appeared to be ducks swimming in the distance. As I approached I found that they were deer! There were 5 deer swimming across the river…a distance of about a mile!

I approached them to a reasonable distance to make sure that I did not intimidate them, and paddled across with them. It was an amazing sight. I really wish I had my camera. Also amazing was the distance and speed they were swimming. I had my GPS on my deck…they were doing about 3 mph through rough water with about 2 foot wind waves. Water temp was probably 45 or so. Truly a unique paddling experience.


Me too
In the distance I saw what I thought was an unnaturally huge duck or goose. It was the head of a buck swimming from one side of the deep cove to the other! I have seen 4 or 5 running through the water in shallow coves, but never before one with its body fully submerged. Quite a sight when it climbed out of the water a minute later.

Me too
Twice at different times swimming across lakes and different times swimming across rivers.

A national park ranger down in the Everglades once told me that many of the younger ones are lost to alligators when they attempt to swim across some body of water.

Cheers, and Merry christmas,


Me Too

– Last Updated: Dec-25-06 8:09 AM EST –

It was in the water because a dog was chasing it on land. The water was COLD. The deer had a time getting his legs to work again when he got to shore.

My buddy had his camera:

That Is An Exciting Site
Last year I was paddling in a saltmarsh with a strong current and whipping wind. Two deer jumped in ahead of me and attempted to cross about 75 yards to the other side. The current was too much for them and they turned around ran closer to me and tried again only to repeat. The did this four times before finally swimming all the way across.

Happy Paddling,


The distance was what amazed me. The river is about a mile across. I could not believe they were making such a long crossing, especially in the cold!


Where were you…
on the Susquehanna ? It is quite common from the islands above the power dams. The dear swim back & forth to the river islands. I have never seen a group of deer,but have seen plenty of single deer. Last time was 2 years ago a 4 point buck in the fall doing close to a mile swim at a Fish & Boat launch ramp just 4 miles below Columbia/Wrightsville bridges{York County side}. More common on the Lancaster County side of the river {islands closer to river banks,and farmfields} Three weeks ago I spotted a deer on an island in the same area. Not sure why,other then security,because there is little vegetation,but it was hunting season.

Happy Paddling billinpa

Saw the fresh tracks
of deer (many) going up and down the steep and muddy Conewango banks last week, in and out of the water. We figured they must have been swimming across, but didn’t actually see it. We didn’t realize the deer crossed the creek via the water, but I guess they have to.

Cool story…
Have not paddled by deer, but have seen bear swimming in Alaska including a big Coastal Brown Bear outside of Sitka…seemed a bit grumpy and I stayed well clear. Big boy was cruisin right along. Saw on TV last night this guy walking into the water to pet his Killer Whale pals…pretty cool. On a long lonely solo paddle I came eye to eye with a bull Orca who was checking me out…very scary actually. He dipped below the surface, rolled his dorsal up, then tail, the slapped the water and swam off. Later biologists at Port McNeil told me it was likely a bull out scouting his pods territory and he was definitely checking me out.

I was just above the Conowingo Dam, north of Havre de Grace, MD.