We planned for a paddle over to Chatham/Discovery Islands this morning. The tides and currents looked favourable, and even the weather looked like it would cooperate. Yes, last night's weather forecast called for clouds this morning, but it still promised to be decent paddle weather on a flat sea.
Come morning however, the clouds appeared as promised, but brought their children, their in-laws and their neighbors with them.
We were absolutely socked in. We've paddled in fog here before, but this was the thickest we'd seen it here on a paddle day.
It was just Paula, Louise and myself today. We were well-equipped for the fog, each of us with a compass as well as my GPS, so a paddle out to the islands would probably have been technically feasible, but it really was thick fog and showing no sign that it was ever going to burn off anytime soon. (And it didn't burn off all day.) So we decided to stick close to shore and paddle south down to Willows Beach and explore the rock gardens along the way. No sooner had we launched than we saw Mike Jackson and some friends assessing the conditions. Paula never misses a chance to talk kayaks.
We passed by the Yacht Club...
...and discovered that the fog was so thick that even the herons were grounded.
In fact, many birds weren't flying today. Many of them were asleep! We passed by a number of small islands covered with oystercatchers that were sleeping. I wonder if the thick fog was confusing them, as if they hadn't realized that the sun had come up.
And what's with this sleeping on one foot thing? That does not look comfortable!
While I was checking out the oystercatchers, I saw this colourful head pop up.
I drifted around the little island and saw him again.
We paddled down down to Mary Tod Island, then turned around to head back. Here's Paula and Louise just off Willows Beach (trust me -- there's a beach there)...
....as Mike Jackson's group came out of the fog. They were headed down to Trial Island (and you can read about their paddle here).
The fog was getting thicker on the return trip. We had to keep our eyes open as other boats were out playing in the mist.
Soon, we approached our launch point on the beach at Cadboro Bay. (Once again, you'll have to trust me.)
A happy landing!
Trip Length: 8.47 km.
My photos are here.
The Google Earth kmz is here.