I should have taken pictures but the advice that we get from the guides is to not take anything that can’t withstand a dump in the water for “just in case” purposes, but the day was beautiful and the 5 of us had a great time!
The majority of our group are relative new comers to the sport so the group tour thing is a great option for us. We bought the specials from “Team Buy” this year for East Coast Outfitters (ECO), we bought 2 each of the 4 hour tour which includes a snack (we’ve decided that next time we’re augmenting the snack with a picnic!) and a tour guide.
There were five of us in the group that went out yesterday, “sorta family” so we all know each other quite well, we had a blast. After putting on our very attractive “skirts” and getting the safety talk, we headed out across the bay. The wind had kicked up a bit so the open water parts were a little breezy but our guide, Corinne, took us through some great sheltered little back bays. Rouge’s Roost, which is a series of small bays that rum runners used to hide their booty in, and where today, boats moor for safety.
The story is that the rum runners would sail into the bay sink their kegs of rum (illegal at the time) in bags packed with salt, go to the check in point get a “clean” check in, sail back to the bay wait for the salt packed around the rum kegs to melt and float to the surface, they’d then sail off with the guards none the wiser.
There was a lot of laughter when we were learning to use our rudders. Most of us have only used kayaks that don’t have this feature, you sorta “wing” it when your out there but these sea kayaks have rudders and they really stabilize you in the wind. Logically, if you want to turn right you push down on the right peddle and if you want to turn left you push down on the left one. That seemed to be a challenge for us and caused a lot of laughter as there were a few close calls. At one point Caitlin and I bumped into each other and some how ended up attached, prompting Corinne to free us with the statement “I’ve never seen that happen before”, we aim to please!
The morning was foggy and the forecast did call for thundershowers (which never happened) so the weather was actually really good for us, it wasn’t to hot on the water and the sun wasn’t beating down on us. As we pulled into Hearn Island for our “snack/break” time the fog was burning off and the sun was just starting to shine full force. We sat on the beach and ate a whole bunch of things we normally don’t eat (ie: cookies, something I rarely if ever eat, I had 2, they were really good!) and talked and watched how busy the ‘hood was becoming with motor boats. The realization of why kayaks are so colourful became crystal clear! If I ever buy one, I’m getting bright orange.
When we were in the sheltered bays you could smell the amazing sent coming from the bayberries that were on the land, the seagulls were being lazy and riding the thermals checking us out to see if there was any potential food to be had. It’s really amazing being that close to the water, I found myself a few times, taking a break from paddling just to gaze down into the clear water to see the bottom and to run my hand along the very top. Taking this time as well to remember my Dad, who had died on this day 23 years ago. He had been a rower for the Argonaut & the Don Treader Rowing Clubs in TO. Kayaking isn’t the same but in those quiet moments, where there is no wake or disturbance and everything is still, the smooth water is quiet and peaceful and links us both.
The last hour was the hardest for us. After break we were all done, it was our 1st time out this year and for some of the group the 1st time ever kayaking so the 4 hours was a lot to do for a starter trip. Surprisingly I’m not sore today, I thought I would be but I’m not. I am, however, up at 445AM! We headed back into the dock a little quieter than we started out all of us tired but happy it is amazing what the ocean will do for you, not to mention 4 hours of exercise.
I think we’ve all agreed that it was tons of fun and that we’re looking forward to the next girls day out, maybe we’ll invite the guys this time we’ll see how good they are!
Dreaming big from the East Coast