Friday, December 25, 2009
Under the bridge in St. Philips is the gateway to the fresher water flowing in from a stream to the little harbour. It is where we generally wash off apres paddle. No different yesterday and afterall ya gotta have your boat clean for Christmas??????
Thursday, December 24, 2009
About two weeks ago we got winter in one day...literally, 25-30 cm of snow. We felt swamped. Today it is barely visible except as frost on the stern of my boat. I'm just getting ready to put-in here for a Dec 24th paddle with some friends. What a day it turned out to be. If you are not a paddler and stumbled on my blog for some reason, I give you the gift of encouragement for the season. I encourage you to paddle, as I believe you will find a certain peace there, for many, like myself, it may be our only religion. This of course means that everytime we are on the water and finding our peace we are in fact celebrating our own faith. A hope, maybe even a belief that we have found something bigger than ourselves and something worth sharing. So just do it and you too will enjoy writing and talking about it. Just ask any kayaker, well maybe you shouldn't because once they are on the topic it is hard to shut them down and you all know what I mean. Happy Holidays to you and your families and safe winter paddling.
The winds were there, 20-25 knots maybe, some swell, the temp about 2 celsius, conditions for a paddle. Some days you just got to be on the water. Sometimes it takes a bit of enticement, like the day before Christmas, yeah that sounds enticing,and other days you need a friend to motivate you. Whatever it maybe, get on the water, we all know that we never regret the decision to do it once there. So today we decided to play in the waves and dart back and forth from headland to headland stopping to catch our breaths and chat andmostly trying to catch a fun running wave.
Well if you get off work early and phone a few guys the night before you just might have some takers for a Christmas Eve Day PAddle. So we did. I arrived a little early at St. Philips to loosen up a bit and was later joined by Tony, Derrick, Sean and Dean. Derrick and Sean just crusin' by here.
Dean finishing a roll today. The water was not bad at all he claimed. I thought that was pretty good considering it is the day before Christmas and in Newfoundland waters. Ya gotta like it! Good on you Dean for gettig the 'noggin' wet.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Put-ins' they are the greatest and not so greatest of spots in kayaking. We try to make them the easiest and sometimes they are just as scenic as your kayaking destination, after all they may be it. It is bonus when you can choose to do it that way. Sometimes they are that happy place where you all meet and know ahead of time that sometimes the gathering is as good as the journey. Sometimes they are miserable spots designed it seems to pi$# kayakers off, well not really, most times sea kayakers can choose pretty excellent sites because what started as as put-in may well be a take-out upon your return. So, having said that, it is wise not only to plan for what you are putting in to, but also what you will be taking out in. Long walks at a miscalculated low tide takeout is a real slug when your boat is loaded and you are tired after a trip. A couple options,carry boat with a friend, unload and then carry (this means lots of short trips),or haul the darn thing and you might not want to do this if you want to avoid hull mayhem. Best option plan as much for your takout as you put-in. :-)
Monday, December 14, 2009
I won't be here next year for our annual Jan. 1st paddle in the gut. But if tradition is holding I'm sure the usual gang will be putting in like Alex here from last year bound for The Gut. The Gut is the entrance to St. John's Bay via Quidi Vidi Harbour of which Alex is paddling in here. This was JAn 1st 2009.
Friday, December 11, 2009
There are those days where the sun just doesn't seem to want to shine, literally and figuratively. On those days perhaps it is best just to step back and find your own sunshine. Maybe it's in people, maybe it's in more inanimate things like photos. Photos can almost always guaranteed, take you back or rejuvenate a long lost scent, or simply get those forgotten sounds of summer reverberating once again in your head. This past summer was excellent in St. John's as far as good weather for paddling went. One of the best paddles of the summer was trip done with Alison, Tony and Peter. We paddled leisurely around Woody Island and others, stopping to eat, sun bathe, swim in water holes filled with fresh river water, watch moose, caribou and jelly fish as we just floated on by like Huck Finn floating down the Mississippi on a sweet, hot summers day kind a thing with a straw in our mouths and not a worry or care in the world. Those are the days to be lost in paddling and those are the days to reflect on again and again when you haul out that photo or bring it back up on your screen. This is one of those pictures.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
My friend Tony and I love mulling around in boats. Our boat of choice is the Nordkapp kayak. What fine craft indeed they are. What fun they are to paddle really on any day but this sunny fine day paddling around Kelly's Island and Little Bell made for some typical kayak fun on the water. Off course one of us always finds a bit of excitement either we are lifted skywards on waves or pushed menacingly sideways in surf or just rocked in wind, whatever the case, we feel at home on the water.