Nude Boat Rides
John Steinbeck had Charlie. I have LouLou, a north Texas rescue that resembles a blue heeler. She’s been my traveling companion for the last 3+ years. She really likes going to nudist places, because a lot of them have doggie parks where she can be off the leash, run, and do other doggie things and because I seem to relax better nude. LouLou was left out of my latest nude adventure, a nude boat ride on Lake Travis, on the outskirts of Austin, Texas. Seems dogs, clothed or naked are not permitted on the party boat. I don’t recall how many years the Hill Country Nudists, a travel club in the Austin area, has sponsored this trip, but I’ve been on about 5 of them. We had to stay clothed while the double-decker party boat was moored, but as soon as we were in the middle of the lake the clothes came off, much to the delight of the folks in some of the other boats that passed us!
The boat took about 45 minutes to get to Hippie Hollow (McGregor County Park), which is the only public clothing optional place in Texas. The crew threw out an anchor and tied up to some of the rocks along the shore. The HCN folks had several grills going on the lower deck with burgers, dogs and sausages smoking all day, and lots of side dishes. We had to provide our own adult beverages, but HCN provided everything else. We swam in the lake, slid down the slide on the end of the boat and walked naked on the trails in the park.
First Time Nudist
I asked one of the HCN announcers at the beginning of the boat ride to ask if ask if there were any first-time social nudists on the trip. Several people pointed at Nicole, a 21 year old college student who was with her mom, whom I’ve known for many years. I asked Nicole and her mom if I could do several short interviews with Nicole during the day and permission was granted. If turned out that Nicole was not a pure first timer. She had gone to nudist clubs with mom when she was a little girl, but now she’s about to graduate college with a degree in Accounting and move on to graduate school. She was starting fresh with being comfortable in just her own skin. She and her mom agreed that I could join them occasionally for an ongoing interview. Most of the time I was visiting old friends (including the three people I came with) as I knew about half the people on the boat from previous rides, or 5 Ks or conventions.
While the rest of the boat, except the crew, were stripping, Nicole got down to a swim suit. She told me she was nervous at first, but was not only beginning to feel more comfortable, particularly next to her naked mother, but was even excited about the liberating process. About the time we got to Hippie Hollow Nicole’s top was off, and I don’t know how soon after that the bottom was off. She told me that with her female roommates, they never see each other in less than their underwear so that made this day even more different.
Nicole told me she thought it was helpful for first timers if they went someone who provided support, for her this was mom. She also said that most of her friends worry that they don’t have perfect bodies. This ride was a perfect experience for not worrying about body image. While there was at least one marathon runner and one iron man triathlete on the trip, the vast majority of us are not expecting requests to be fashion models any time in the near future.
Nicole doesn’t plan on a hippie hollow trip on her own largely because she’d worry that she might see someone she knows. That fear was with her a little when she felt comfortable enough to leave the boat and walk with mom on the asphalt path that goes most of the length of the park. I was allowed to tag along. It seems that many of the people at hippie hollow and other places are naked if they’re in the water or sunning near the water, but cover up when walking around. As a couple of guys in shorts came toward us, Nicole attempted to hide behind mom and me. She said it made her uncomfortable to be around others who were uncomfortable being naked. Back on the boat she reported being pretty much totally comfortable.
Big Nude Cruise
As the boat was heading back to its mooring HCN had a drawing for some giveaways, like deck chairs and travel bags. The biggie was raffle drawing for two tickets on the Big Nude Cruise which leaves Florida each February. As I didn’t win, I won’t be submitting an article about the cruise, as it’s not quite within my travel budget. If you are interested Bare Necessities Travel has everything you need to know. If you are going to be in the Austin area the weekend after labor day and have “going on a nude party boat” on your bucket list Hill Country Nudists have a great event planned. Do this in advance as the boat has a limit on the number of riders, and Hill Country Nudists do background checks on prospective participants who are not already members of either The American Association for Nude Recreation or The Naturist Society.
“What Nudists Really Do” – Part 3
For What Nudists Really Do – Part 3, I’ll be in a nude 5K next weekend near Austin. LouLou won’t be allowed to participate in the 5K, but she’s very welcome in the campground at Star Ranch Nudist Resort.