Diving for clams at the bottom of the lake with my brother, cookouts with family, my dad teaching me how to wakeboard and drive a boat, these are just a few of the reasons why Hyco Lake holds a special place in my heart. Throughout the years, the reasons I appreciate Hyco Lake have changed. Even so, at every age and phase in my life, I have always been able to find joy in this simple yet exciting place I call home.
My love for Hyco goes back as long as I can remember. When I was growing up some of my favorite memories were going to my grandparents’ place. Before they decided to build a house and live full-time on the lake, they only had a trailer, a dock, and a few kayaks. I recall, I just could not wait to get there! My family would meet, to eat some of the best food, play in the water, aggravate my uncles (paint their toenails), and my favorite, ride on the boat. I have such awesome memories of my childhood. I have my grandma to thank for showing me one of my first hobbies at the lake, kayaking. I still have yet to become a master of kayaking like my grandma.
A few years later my parents decided to build a house beside my grandparents. By the time the house was finished, I was finally old enough to tube. I remember when I was younger at my grandparents’ dock thinking my uncles were the “most cool” guys, watching them dare devilishly, attempting to sling each other off the tube. Looking back, I’m not sure if they were cool or just plain crazy! I would clench the handles so tightly to stay on, even though the true thrill came from soaring through the air before hitting the water when you're thrown off. That same summer my little brother and I learned how to wakeboard. After many attempts, falling (a lot!!), water up my nose, boat constantly circling to pick me up, Dad getting cranky, finally it became one of my most favorite things to do at the lake. We all still pick on my little brother for always making sure he is at the correct speed. Even today, he constantly yells "speed up" and "slow down" from behind the boat.
As a college student, when spring semester comes around, I become eager for days on Hyco Lake. Today, going to the lake is more than the thrill of tubing behind a boat. It means reconnecting with family and friends after being gone for nine months at school. The dynamics are still somewhat the same...boating, wakeboarding, eating (lots of cookouts), but the memories are still so precious. I long for Hyco Lake, and the wonderful lazy days of summer.
My ideal day consists of riding the boat with friends and family listening to our favorite songs, we will stop to see if friends are home. Most of the time we dock up to play cards, ride the boat, go from friend to friend to friend’s docks, my mom calls this “dock hopping.” After a long fun day in the sun we ride the boat to Buoys to have supper. If I am lucky though, my dad will already have my favorite home cooked ribs with squash casserole ready back at home.
Simply looking out onto the lake while relaxing and eating snacks can be just as much fun as riding on the boat. There is nothing quite as peaceful or freeing as being able to enjoy my surroundings of the outdoors.
On special occasions during the summer there will be band playing at Remax or Buoys. People of all ages come together to dance, talk and have a good time. I get to see what feels like my whole family at these events, my grandparents, uncles, cousins. Though, what I fail to realize until these community events, which bring us all together, is how many others enjoy Hyco as much as I do. I always see refreshing new or unfamiliar faces in this fast-growing community.
The summers I spent growing up at Hyco Lake have influenced my life in more ways than I realize. I have taken on new hobbies, gained long lasting friendships, and created memories and traditions with my family that wouldn't have been possible without this fantastic place. I look forward too many more summers spent at this little piece of heaven.
With each issue of Hyco Lake Magazine we publish stories written by high school and college students. Our goal is to give the young people of the Hyco Lake Region a voice as well as encourage them to read our community-based publication. And we pay them for stories! Visit this link for more information https://hycolakemagazine.com/article/