Friday, November 16, 2007

Short Trip to Nova Scotia

Didn't get to do any paddling, but I just thought I'd share a few photos that I took over the Halloween weekend in the Halifax area. I got to visit Oak Island, the site of the famous Money Pit (alleged pirate buried treasure). I hope to go back someday and do a paddle around Mahone Bay. The fall colours were amazing.

Rock sculptures in Peggy's Cove. A local artist took 6 years to carve this tribute to the hardworking men and women of the sea in a 30m granite rock in his backyard. Its pretty impressive.

Interesting tree in Old Lunenberg.

Peggy's Cove Lighthouse at sunset - the icon of Atlantic Canada

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Circumnavigation of Chapel Island, Sept 2007

........well, almost.

Myself and Trent Hardy did an overnight trip around Chapel Island during the Labour Day weekend. Originally it was to be a 3 day trip, but the weather had other ideas, and we had to shorten the trip and make it a 2 day trip. The plan was to leave Boyd's Cove and paddle clockwise around Chapel Island, spend the night on Inspector Island (a Beothuk site) and the following day, go through the Curtis Causeway and into Dildo Run and around the rest of Chapel Island, finishing off where we started. Again, mother nature proved she was the boss and gave us 50 gusting to 70 km/hr headwinds as we just about finished our paddle. We had to beach the kayaks and walk to the last few kilometres to get our cars, as forward progress was near impossible. I'm in the process of writing up a trip report for the KNL website, and when I get it completed, I'll post the link. Here are some pictures from the trip.

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago

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

Monday, July 16, 2007

Bellevue Beach, July 2007

On saturday it was a beautiful day, a great day for the beach. Also a great time to take my friends Dmitry and Katrina for their first paddle. They came to Canada in September from Russia and were very eager to get out for their first paddle. Katrina was a little nervous at first, but after a few minutes she was comfortable and enjoying herself. We had a great day, the capelin were in, but unfortunately, no whales. We did see a few bald eagles though. After a BBQ, we went out again, this time Dmitry and his mom, Svetlana, in the double. She doesn't speak english, but was all smiles and gave me the thumbs up when we got back to the beach.

Cottlesville, June 2007

While getting a few touch ups done to my kayak in Cottlesville, home of Seaknife kayaks, I got to take in a paddle in the area with local paddler, Brian Searwar, who was nice enough to give me a tour of the region. After that I got to go for another paddle with Lindy Rideout, owner/operator of Seaknife Kayaks, and his dog. Lindy's service is second to none, and if anyone is in this area, drop by his house and he'd be happy to take you out for a paddle. We were very lucky with absolute perfect conditions, no wind, warm and a few icebergs in the area to boot!

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago