This morning, we arrived at the beach at Cadboro Bay and discovered that Bernie thinks he's the next Bryan Smith. Or maybe the next Michael Moore. Either way, Bernie had his video camera out and wanted to shoot footage of us unloading and getting our kayaks ready for launch. Brian's here too, despite having come down with Swine-Avian-Martian Flu. Or maybe just a bad cold. Brian, the crazy guy with the inflatable kayak/recumbent trike combo from our recent Gorge paddle, was going to paddle with us, but is skipping the paddle due to his cold; however, he is going to see us off and join us for coffee later.
After watching us haul our kayaks to the beach (talk about exciting cinema!), Bernie positioned himself in the water and wanted us to paddle by him a few times. We kayaked past and he panned and tracked us.
As we took up our positions for another run, I said, "I'm going to see how close I can get to Bernie's head." Tracy replied, "I thought the whole idea was to hit Bernie in the head." And she took off, taking dead aim. None of us actually hit Bernie, but I got as close as I could. Either Bernie is a very trusting cameraman, or he had no idea just how close I was planning to pass by him. Anyway, he lived, passed me the camera, and got out of the water and headed off for a coffee with Brian. I took some more shots as we paddled, and now Bernie has all the footage which he will no doubt use for some sort of nefarious purpose.
Finally we began the paddle proper. Louise, Tracy, Paula and I headed out under near calm conditions and sunny skies, although there was a large fog bank offshore obscuring Chatham and Discovery Islands, and that was just as well as none of us were feeling up to a crossing today anyway. We just wanted a nice noodle along the shore.
There wasn't much to see at first, just a few seagulls and the occasional oystercatcher.
Two weeks ago we were here and we couldn't paddle a metre without running over an otter (okay, that's a slight exaggeration), but today there's not an otter to be found. It is funny how one day you'll see a whole bunch of one animal and the next time you kayak in the same spot, there's none. It's like they all packed their bags and left to go to the next cove over or something. Did the the rent go up? Do otters pay rent? Did they get evicted for having too many late night parties? They otter have known better! (har har har)
The horizon was almost invisible at times....
...but in close to shore the conditions were perfect.
We paddled towards Willows Beach and Mary Tod Island, not seeing much of anything, expect for this determined-looking heron off Cattle Point. At Mary Tod, we headed out a bit towards the first bunch of small islands.
And that's where the seals were hanging out. Big, fat, happy-looking seals.
We drifted through the rocks and the seals seemed quite at ease with our passing armada. They must be quite used to humans in small boats. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.
We left the seals and headed back...
...passing this person out enjoying his Hobie and talking on his cell phone. Aren't there laws against paddling and talking on your cell phone? Well, as long as he's calling someone back east and bragging about the glorious weather we've had this summer, I guess it'll be okay.
Trip length: 9.78 km
YTD: 279.03 km
More pictures are here.
The Google Earth kmz is here