Sunday, April 16, 2017

April 16 - Discovery Island (#22)

Dan, Paulo and I went for a morning paddle around the islands. It was a bit windy which definitely slowed us down on the way back north! The water was quite nice and rough for going around the top end of Chatham, but nice and calm in Rudlin Bay. I had planned to do a plankton trawl for a colleague who needs some for his class, so I did that in the bay. You can see how the plankton net slowed me down from 6/7 kph down to around 2 kph - hard work. After our break at the beach, I did another short trawl with a much smaller net - way less drag. The stiff north wind and ebbing current caused us to work hard on the way back - bit of a slog!
I noticed many gees on the islets - looks like they are starting to nest. I also saw several seals and sea lions. The pelagic cormorants have their white "leggings", so it looks like they are thinking about breeding too! Still a few buffleheads around as well as Harlequin. A good number of black oystercatchers and turnstones as well.
click to enlarge
16 km, YTD 209 km

April 12 - Discovery Island (#21)

Dan and I went for an afternoon paddle around the Islands. Conditions were good and we had a nice bit of help from the current on the way back. We stopped for a snack on the beach at Rudlin Bay ( the park is still closed! 😞) I am beginning to notice "summer" birds like the Rhinoceros Auklet around and fewer of the winter birds, though I still saw a good number of Harlequin and Buffleheads.
click to enlarge

15 km, YTD 193 km

Sunday, April 02, 2017

April 2nd - Cadboro Bay (#20)

I went for a solo morning paddle around the bay on the surf ski. Conditions were very nice as I was able to beat the afternoon winds. Plenty of birds around, including hooded and common mergansers, double-crested and pelagic cormorants, surf scoters and buffleheads. I think that many of the winter visiting migrants will be leaving us soon and the summer residents will reappear. The great blue herons have started nesting across the street!
click to enlarge
8 km, YTD 178 km

March 31st - Sooke to Jordan River (#19)

I joined a SISKA meetup paddle from Sooke (just east of Otter Point) to Jordan River. This was organized by Gary and I was paddling with Jeff, Reale, David and John. Conditions were excellent with little wind and an ebb current helping us in the morning. We paddled past Otter Point, Muir and Kirby creeks, Sheringham Point, French Beach, Point No Point and Sandcut Creek and I was able to finish the day with a short surf into the beach at Jordan River. Along the way we found a few rock gardens to play in. All in all a great paddle!
our route - click to enlarge)
25 km, YTD 170 km

March 17-19, Lake Powell (#s 15-18)

Monica and went down to Lake Powell with Natural C-lection to explore the lake and its canyons. It was an amazing trip (I will be writing this up on the Natural C-lection blog soon!). I managed to get out for a few paddles/rows .




March 17th - AM - Fifty Mile Canyon (4 km)

We beached the C-dory for the night on a sandbar that blocked the canyon and I went for a paddle upstream of the sandbar the next morning. The Java paddled well, but I realized that the varying air temperatures (8-28 degrees C) make it a challenge to keep an inflatable at the right pressure! It was neat being the only boat in the area.
50 mile Canyon (click to enlarge)

March 17th - PM - The Rincon (2 km)

I took the Feathercraft Baylee2 raft that we are using as the tender for a reconnoitering row from our campsite to the floating toilet/outhouse. Lake Powell has a collection of eight floating outhouses/portable toilet dumpstations scattered around the lake. These make it very convenient for kayakers and small boaters. The Baylee2 is a great little tender for our C-dory and rows quite nicely.
The Rincon (click to enlarge)

March 19th - AM - Slickrock canyon (2 km)

I went for an early morning row around the canyon inlet, heading out to the mouth and passing by a beached houseboat on the way back.
Slickrock Canyon (click to enlarge)

March 19th - PM - Annies Canyon (6 km)

I took the Feathercraft Java for a nice paddle around Annie's canyon while Monica cruised along in the C-dory taking some pictures. This was a spectacular spot to paddle (as would have been many sites on the lake!) and I had a blast. Monica took some great pictures and put them in an album.
Annie's Canyon (click to enlarge)
all the paddles plotted on one image (click to enlarge)
Total paddle distance 14 km, YTD 145 km ( I probably paddled and rowed a bit more than this, but did not record!)

Saturday, March 04, 2017

March 4th - Cadboro Bay test paddle (#14)

Monica and I did a short and quick test paddle of the inflatable Feathercraft Java that I am planning to take with us on our upcoming trip to Lake Powell. It paddle nicely with both of us in it as well as singly. The skeg definitely makes a difference! Looking forward to using it in Lake Powell!
click to enlarge

1 km, YTD 131 km

Thursday, March 02, 2017

March 2nd - Discovery Island (#13)

Dan, Paulo and I went for a morning paddle out to the islands. Conditions were good, though there was a strong ebb which made for some fun waves in Baynes and around Seabird point. You can also see how fast we were going on the outward journey. There were a few sea lions around, including a big male Steller sea lion on the rocks south of Rudlin Bay. We saw the park ranger patrolling - probably checking on the wolf, who was nowhere to be seen.
click to enlarge
15 km, YTD 130 km.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

February 18th - Discovery Island (#12)

Dan, Rob and I went out to the Islands on a relatively calm and lightly rainy day. There was a bit of a building ebb, but not too bad. We ran into Lanny out near the boat house and paddled with him until we got to Jemmy Jones. We were treated to a nice view of the wolf in Rudlin Bay. He made no attempt to try to hide from us and did a bit of barking and howling after a while. The howls echoed around the bay! He still looks to be in great shape. We saw the Songhees patrol boat with Ian at the helm speeding along in between the islands and also a group from the Songhees that appeared to be looking at some midden deposits at the NW end of west Chatham.
click to enlarge
15 km, YTD 115 km.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

February 8th - Cadboro Bay with Gordon Brown (#11)

I joined a group of SISKA paddlers for a intermediate paddling skills clinic with Gordon Brown of Skyak Adventures . The day was cold, windy and snowy so we tended to hunker down in the NW corner of the bay as we practiced and learned our sweeps and draws Gordon is a wonderful teacher and we all came away with things to practice and work on. It was a good experience to work on a skills clinic in less that ideal conditions!
click to enlarge
6 km, YTD 100 km

Sunday, February 05, 2017

February 5th - Discovery island (#10)

Rob and I went for an early morning paddle around the islands - left at 0830 and were back before 1100. Conditions were great - little current and little wind. The tide was very high sowe were able to go through a few "passes" that we usually can't clear. Saw a few groups of long-tailed duck, scoters, buffleheads, mergansers, cormorants, eagles, and there were about 20 great blue herons around the lagoon on west Chatham. No sign of the wolf today, though I heard he had a seal in Rudlin Bay last weekend.
click to enlarge
16 km, YTD 94 km

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Feb 2nd - Jemmy Jones (#9)

I went out for a quick, late afternoon, paddle - realized that I had not been out in almost 2 weeks! Conditions were cool but not too windy. Managed to maintain a moving average of 8.5 kph on the surf ski, so it was a good work out. A few birds around, surf scoters, buffleheads, a great blue heron and cormorants.
click to enlarge
5 km, YTD 78 km.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

January 22nd - Mill Bay with Gordon Brown (#8)

I accompanied Gordon Brown while he instructed a SISKA clinic for beginner-intermediate paddlers in Mill Bay. though it was a bit damp, the wind was kind to us and we had a great day of learning. Basically we paddled around in front of Brentwood College School. There were some swans as well as the usual buffleheads, cormorants, kingfishers and gulls.
click to enlarge
5km, YTD 73 km

Saturday, January 21, 2017

January 21 - Saanich Inlet with Gordon Brown (#7)

I joined a group of five other SISKA instructors for a day with Scottish paddler Gordon Brown. We had a nice paddle to Spectacle falls and over to McKenzie Bight as we discussed instructional techniques and practiced various skills. It was an excellent day on the water where I learned skills to help me teach better as well as a few extra paddling skills for me!
click to enlarge
15 km, YTD 68 km

Sunday, January 15, 2017

January 15th - Discovery Island (#6)

I went for a nice morning paddle with Dan, Dennis and Rob out to my favourite local islands! Conditions were wonderful - flat calm, sunny and not too much current ( a reasonable ebb as you can see on the plot). We met Cheryl who had been observing the wolf, though we did not see him and then later met Alan's SISKA paddle group of 20 paddlers coming around the top end of Chatham as we were about to head back across Baynes.
Nice to have a decent paddling weather day again after a lot of cold windy ones! Lots of birds out today. Hooded and common mergansers, black oystercatrchers, double-crested and pelagic cormorants, bald eagle, buffleheads, long-tailed duck, surf scoter and more.
click to enlarge
15 km, YTD 53 km

January 13/14 - Surge narrows (#s 4&5)

I went up to Campbell River to paddle Surge Narrows with Alan and Craig. Friday the 13th was not a great one for me as I had brought the wrong spray deck and had left the spare at Alan's house. Craig lent me his deck for a while and I had some good rides early on. I then tried his delphin surf and had a couple of good rides followed by a capsize and a swim! I managed a cowboy self rescue in the rapids, but I had not zipped up the Peak leg zip drysuit enough so had a wet left foot for the rest of the day. On Saturday the wave was not easy for me to stay on as it seemed to want to throw me off to the left. I did get some good rides, but I think my confidence had been shaken by my swim the day before. I need to edge much more agressively.
click to enlarge
8 km, YTD 38 km