Monday, August 13, 2007

Avondale Night Paddle with KNL

Saturday evening I got to experience my first night paddle. I joined the group from Kayak Newfoundland and Labrador (KNL). There were 23 kayaks, if memory serves, and we had a fantastic paddle. About 12kms in total. We left the slipway in Avondale at about 9:30 and paddled to Conception Harbour to see a shipwreck, then returned with a stop along the way at Ballyhack Cove for a fire on the beach. We got back to the slipway at about 12:30am. It was a great experience that I really enjoyed. I'll be sure to go next year!

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago

The Windy Summer

What a windy summer it has been. Every day, it seems to blow 50kms/hr, making it really tough to get out paddling on the weekends. I've been going down to the pond behind my house most evenings, where it sheltered.

Last weekend me, Angie, Trent and Andrea went for a paddle in Cupids, but it was really windy once we got outside the harbour, so we had to turn around. Paddling into headwinds isn't much fun! I took a picture from the beach, but didn't take any more once we were on the water, it was too windy to take my hands off the paddle. We did see 2 whales (or the same whale twice) but they were a few hundred metres off in the distance.

After that, we headed back to our place for a little pond practise.

Last week, I got a chance to paddle Middle Cove with Trent for an hour or so, but I didn't have my camera with me. It was a bit of a spur of the moment paddle, with a borrowed boat, but I was really happy to get out on the water when there were no winds.

Rock Over London, Rock on Chicago

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Learning to Roll, August 2007

After much trial and error, I have finally learned to roll. Last summer I took a 2 evening clinic for stroke development and rolling, put off by The Outfitters in St. John's. This course taught me the fundamentals of rolling, and this summer I've been practicing it a lot in the pond behind my house. After a few frustrating evenings, I think I finally have it. Two things were holding me back from success: taking my head out of the water too early, as it should be the last thing to leave the water, and not sweeping my paddle out in a wide enough arc. Once I figured these two things out, I was amazed at how easy it was. The extended paddle roll is much easier to get first. The leverage you get from the extended paddle is almost enough to flip you over the other way if you aren't careful!

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago