10/20/2017 - If you haven't been kayaking or canoeing on the Guadalupe, words simply cannot describe the beauty.
Majestic cypress trees tower 100 feet or more into the air. Huge boulders, some like inverted pyramids sit in the middle of the river, as the water slowly washes away at them.
Tons of people float the Guadalupe, trying to stay cool in the summer heat. On this day, we decided to take a kayak trip through a part few get to see.
Stacey Katzer contacted us and suggested we take a ride with her. She owns Texas Pack & Paddle.
Katzer opened her business roughly 20 years ago, turning her love of fishing and kayaking into a lucrative business.
"I do multi-day trips, coast trips, and then I do the day trips, usually along the Guadalupe, San Marcos, Llano. I am a concession operator downtown San Antonio, so I do the Mission reach" Katzer said.
She just returned from a week-long kayak trip in Big Bend, with a group of mostly women.
She said the demographic for her business is mostly women.
"...seventy-five percent women from age 35 to 55. And you may not think this is funny but we laugh about it because guys just go for it, they don't want a guide." Katzer said "Men don't care if they tip over and lose all the gear, fishing poles, whatever. Women are more laid back and cautious."
Since mother nature has been generous this year with her rains, the water flow was just heavy enough to create a series of small rapids along our 4-mile journey.
We put in at the "Rush" crossing, just north of Bergheim and paddled the approximately four miles to Guadalupe State Park.
According to Katzer, the trip normally takes about two hours. This day it took considerably longer because of all the time we spent getting camera shots, loading and unloading gear, and of course, having fun in the water.
Luckily, there was no hurry. We had the luxury of just enjoying a beautiful 80-degree day.
Katzer runs trips six days a week.
"I usually have to force myself to take Mondays off," Katzer said.
She also says she routinely books "team building" trips for companies like USA, HEB, and Frito-Lay. She said her most rewarding gigs are kid's trips that she books for inner-city youth.
"They get out and get in the water and it's like the ah-ha moment. It's like there's something else to do other than video games and TV" Katzer said.
Those trips are done on the San Antonio River, downtown, and along the Mission Reach. Which we promised Katzer, we'd join down the road.
If you're interested in booking a trip with Texas Pack and Paddle or contact 210-857-2565 by text.
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