Sunday, January 3, 2010

1st Winter Paddle

Success! Yesterday was my first paddle of the winter season. First time hauling my kayak on my new car and using the new rack. All went well. Put in at Redwood City Marina about 10:50AM. It was 61ยบ and the water was calm but there was a lot of fog. Not too busy at the ramp. I guess the clouds kept most away. Living in the San Francisco Bay Area you're surrounded by water and you can get to lots of places without having to drive long distances. The trade off is there are reminders of civilization around every bend. Lots of industry nearby and big electrical towers along the route. Didn't like that part of it, and I was solo today. I think with the cruddy weather it would have been more fun with my partner along. Especially when I started to get a little cold and tired.

Redwood City Marina

I felt pretty good the first 1-1/2 hrs. I had planned well; brought hot tea with a little treat from Peet's Coffee, water, Powerbar, and some ShotBlocks. Not too much wildlife today. I guess the clouds kept them away too. But when I stopped for some tea, up popped 5 seals. They didn't want to get too close, and kept an eye on me. I was hoping to find the slough that went around Blair Island; a wildlife preserve, where lots of seals pup and birds stay. But I never found the turnoff. I kept along the main slough, Corkscrew, for about 3-1/2 miles, checking my GPS. I figured I'd missed the turnoff but I'd never paddled in this particular slough before, so I thought I'd check it out until it was time to turn around. Saw a few Egrets, Pelicans, geese, ducks, and a very cool bird on the way back. I'll have to try to find it's name as I don't know if I'd ever seen it before. It was camped on a large wood post in the main channel. Just as I got my camera ready a power boat went by, and off it flew. No picture!

saw the seals here

All in all, it was a good day. Accomplished 3 hours of paddling, investigated a new slough, saw a little wildlife, and made it back home. Already planning the next day and doing my homework so I can find that channel around the wildlife preserve.

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