Thursday, August 06, 2015

10 Years of Kayak Yakking

Here's something a little different for Throwback Thursday. Ten years ago tomorrow, we published this blog's first post, a paddle report from Cadboro Bay.
It was only the third time I'd ever been in a kayak, and the first time Louise and I had been out in our new-to-us kayaks (which you can see below) that I had bought off my sister, and the first time I'd ever been in a kayak on the ocean. My previous two times kayaking was just going for a couple of little lake paddles in Paula and Bernie's little red Pamlico (which you can also see below). Despite living on the ocean's shore for most of my life, it had never even occurred to me that kayaking might be something I might like to do until Paula and Bernie bought their red kayak second-hand, maybe even third hand, from a rental place that was unloading old rental boats, and they dragged Louise and I out to Elk Lake to give it a spin. Hesitatingly, I climbed into their kayak not sure what to expect, but after a few paddle strokes, I was enthralled, a big smile spreading across my face. I could get used to this, I thought to myself.
A few days later, Bernie and I rode our bikes out to Matheson Lake, where we met Paula and Louise who drove out with the Pamlico tied to the roof of the car. While the four of us picnicked on the beach, we each took a turn paddling the little kayak around the lake. I think it's fair to say we were all pretty hooked by this point.
Then I recalled that my sister had bought a pair of kayaks some years earlier, a pair of purple Dagger Bayous. Inquiring, I discovered that they had used them only a couple of times and that they were just taking up space in her basement. So a deal was struck, the kayaks had a new home, we had a new hobby, and our bank accounts have never recovered.
As we geared up, I also bought a waterproof case for my digital camera, and it only seemed natural to me to take pictures while we were out kayaking. Every since then, I've taken at least one camera out with me when kayaking, sometimes even three cameras. (Except for that infamous time when I forgot all my cameras at home.) I had a couple of other blogs going (blogs were A Really Big Thing back in 2005) so starting a kayaking blog seemed like an obvious thing to do.
And now, here we are ten years later.
The blog continues...we'll be at well over 1800 posts by the end of the year. Our most popular post continues to be a 2010 post about the two Norwegian guys in full wet suits who were waiting on lawn chairs in the street for the Google Maps car to drive by. Over 17,000 page views. I have no idea why that post is so popular. If I knew why, I'd be a millionaire blogger by now.
We've slowed down the kayaking in the last few years; various injuries and aches and pains have taken their toll, and after all, we are no longer young spring chickens in our early 40s! :) Also, landlubber issues and activities have consumed more time. And time, of course, is the one thing that there's never enough of.
The little kayaks Louise and I paddled in this post are long gone from our home, moved on to another good home. Their replacements in our basement are bigger, better and much more seaworthy. These newer kayaks probably don't get used as much as they would like, but they do get used every so often. And every time we use them, that big old smile spreads across my face.

And so, without any further ado, here's a re-post of that first blog entry from August 7, 2005:

A lovely sunny day for a paddle. Bernie's keen to begin.

Here I am, the first time out in my new ride, a Dagger Bayou. My sister and her hubby owned a pair of these and have hardly used them over the last five years. So in one fell swoop I bought two kayaks, all the gear and roof racks. Yes, I know my paddle is facing the wrong way. I'm just a newbie. This is only the third time that I've been in a kayak. I don't even have a skirt yet.

The Daggers are slightly longer than Paula and Bernie's Pamlico, which they took turns in.
Here's Louise in her Dagger.

Paula is really setting the pace.



This is fun! I think I could get used to this!

John's pictures are here.

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