Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve Paddle

This morning I managed to get away from all the hustle and bustle of Christmas and sneak off for a few hours for a paddle around Dildo Head. Yes, you read that right, Dildo Head.

I don't have enough time now to post more pics or info about my paddle, that will have to wait until the New Year.

See you in 2010!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Portugal Cove to St Philips

Yesterday Trent and I paddled from Portugal Cove to St Philips and back. It was my first ever December paddle, as well as my first paddle in that area. I usually don't drive into "town" to paddle, and stick to my area, Trinity Bay. Great coastline, I think I'll have to return to that area during the summer.

It was very, very foggy and rainy, but it was mild, with no wind, so it made for a decent day to paddle. We departed near the Bell Island ferry terminal and headed south for St Philips. There was a bit of swell coming from the northwest, but once we got into the protection of Bell Island, conditions were pretty benign. The paddle was roughly 10kms return and took us a little less than 2 hours. A good day on the water for December.

Happy first day of Winter. Hopefully I can get out to do a few more of these winter paddles, if conditions allow. I'm a VERY cautious paddler, so I don't take this stuff lightly. Things can get very bad in a hurry in these waters during the summer, let alone the winter. So I always proceed with caution.

Merry Christmas

Heading south

Very short clip of a sea cave

Sea cave

Sea Cave - beware of falling ice!

St Philips in the background

St Philips

Heading North

Can't see Bell Island for the fog

Back in Portugal Cove

Friday, December 11, 2009

Finding the Outdoor Paradise Close to Home

Given the recent introduction of winter, as I'm sure the other Newfoundland paddlers/bloggers are doing, I find myself looking back at pictures of the paddling trips I did this past summer. I stumbled across a few that I did not blog about.

Living outside the city, I feel lucky to have the solitude of nature right at my doorstep. Back in June, the first weekend after we returned from our honeymoon, Angie and I, along with Trent and Andrea had a spur of the moment overnight paddling trip. Making this decision a few hours before dark meant that we had few options. How about on the far end of the second pond in Whitbourne? There is a small beach, on the far end of this pond, with a small clearing in the woods behind just big enough for 2 tents. Perfect.

With the put-in less than a kilometre from my house we launched, made the short 2.75km paddle to the camping spot and got set up just before dark. It was a great night under the stars, with drinks, laughs and of course, marshmellows and weiners. It was paradise to me.

No matter where you live, always try to find the outdoor paradise close to home. Sometimes its right under your nose.

How many months until spring??


Starting on Junction Pond

Second Pond

Rooster uses one of our tarp poles for a chew toy

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Hopeall Bay

I can't remember the last weekend it wasn't windy and raining. This past weekend was no exception. Gale Warnings in effect all over eastern Newfoundland. This makes it tough to get out on the ocean for a paddle. In fact, I think the last time I had my kayak on salt water was back at the end of August. The wind has always pushed me inland to rivers.

With gales forecast somewhere in the vicinity of 35 knots from the SW on Sunday, Trent and I headed to Hopeall, in Trinity Bay, which is very sheltered from SW winds, for a couple hours of paddling in the morning. Altogether it was around 9-10kms. We paddled out as far as Hopeall Head, poked our heads out into the gale and turned around and headed back.

One thing of interest we saw was a recently deceased dolphin on the beach. Would have been nice to see it alive in the water.

With any luck I'll get on the water again this weekend.

Rock over London, Rock on Chicago

Hopeall Bay, Trinity Bay

Setting forth

Trent framed in by the wharf

Something dead on the beach

Poor dolphin, would have been nice to see it alive and swimming next to our boats

Trent with Hopeall Island in the background

Hopeall Head

Getting ready to poke our heads out into the gale

Looks pretty nasty out there, SW gales 35 knots

Lunch break