Sunday, March 26, 2006

2006.11.26 - Elk Lake

Today, we returned to Elk Lake for a cold and windy paddle. Unlike the last couple of weeks where we were taking layers off, some of us were adding layers as the paddle went on. (Pay attention to Louise's clothes as the pictures progress.)

Here's Louise, fresh in the water and ready to rock. Paula and Bernie were a little late, so Louise and I had the lake to ourselves for a while. (And Dennis and Alison didn't show at all -- the wimps!)

The lake was windy and choppy. Small squalls were blowling through.

The plan was for a paddle, then some wet exit practise. In this picture, I've just felt the temperature of the water and I'm clearly looking forward to dunking myself.

Here's Paula getting into her kayak. She was obviously having some sort of trouble. I did notice that her middle finger kept going into spasm. Everytime I pointed the camera at her, it extended.

As you can see, Louise is now bundled up like a big pink fluffy big pink something or other. Anyway, now we were ready to start our paddle!

Then my camera batteries died. :(

My pictures are here.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

2006.10.25 - Sidney Harbour

Today we headed out to Sidney to putter around the Harbour. This was our first trip out this way, and the weather was great, easily the nicest day we've had so far this year.

Paula moves ahead in the kayak sweepstakes. Now she owns three. Her latest is this small inflatable. She wanted something that she could transport around easily on her tricycle or even the bus, and this little guy certainly foots the bill.
(But she's a little embarrassed about how much she's spent on kayak stuff recently, so don't tell her folks. It'll be our little secret.)
While Paula took a quick bathroom break before we started, Bernie took it out for a little spin. (He was a little embarrassed that he took out Paula's new kayak before she officially christened it, so don't tell her. It'll be our little secret.)

Mr. Kayakhead, Canada's only inflatable crimefighter!
Mr. Kayakhead

So here's Paula, smiling and finally in the water in her new kayak. She's paddling in front of the world's largest block of Neapolitan ice cream. (Bernie had already gone through and had eaten all the chocolate.)
The World's Largest Neopolitan Ice Cream

We weren't the only boats on the water!

No eagles today, but a cormorant found us slightly interesting.
King of the Castle

Here's Bernie in Paula's second boat. He's smiling, too!

Dennis was also in a smiling mood!

Louise is smiling, too! You'd think we were all having fun or something!

Alison's smiling because she's back from vacation and isn't lending her boat to amateurs like the rest of us anymore. :)

Many readers have asked how we transport our kayaks around. (Actually, none have. But we can dream.) Anyway, here's me loading two kayaks on my van.

Dennis and Bernie are in deep discussion about something to do with length and depth perception.

My pictures are here.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

2006.09.24 - Lower Gorge

Today's paddle was the lower Gorge.
Paula used her new kayak. What a proud mama.

We put in at Songhees where we did our harbour paddle a few weeks ago, but instead of heading south into the harbour, we turned north and went up the Gorge.

Somebody wipe that grin off Paula's face! :)

There was a couple of big slowpokes in our way. But they soon made way when they saw that there were kayakers closing in at ramming speed!

Bernie going under the Johnson Street Bridge.
Bernie Under the Bridge

Louise still thinks there might be hope for the rest of us.

Hey, this ain't a bad picture for pointing the camera over my shoulder and not aiming, eh?

A seal followed us the whole way down the Gorge. Finally he decided to say hello...
... and goodbye.

Nice house. I bet it's got at least three bathrooms.
Do You Wanna Buy a Condo...?

And a good time was had by all!

More pictures are here.

Sunday, March 5, 2006

2006.08.23 - Coles Bay

Sunday dawned bright, sunny and warm.
Not here.
But cool and cloudy works, so it was off to Coles Bay for a splash.
We arrived at Coles Bay Regional Park and discovered it was quite a hike from the parking lot to the beach along a steep trail. Nice for a walk... not so nice for carrying kayaks. Fortunately, Louise's brother lives right beside the park, and his backyard goes right down to the beach. So after a slight delay, we launched.

I took Alison's 12 ft fiberglass Kestral this week, a far cry from my plastic 11 ft Dagger. I was a little wobbly at first, sort of like trying to ride your bike without training wheels for the first time. But after about half in hour, I had gotten used to it and it was a sweet ride!

Coles Bay is on the eastern side of the Saanich Penninsula, north of Brentwood Bay. We headed south. It was a dark, cloudy day. Here, Bernie removed his hat to allow extra forehead glare to light our way.

Dennis chugged along in his inflatable. ("His wife" as he refers to it. We are somewhat disgusted yet strangely interested in his choice of nickname.)

A fun day!

John's pictures are here.