Sunday, October 19, 2014

Baynes Channel, Discovery Island and Birthday Girl

Every once in awhile life just gets in the way of blogging and the past couple of weeks has been a flurry of activity for Robyn and I. Between our activities with the BC Marine Trails Network Association and our other volunteer commitments, this post just sat in the draft box while I found time finish it. So here we go ......

It was supposed to be a stormy day on the west coast with 25-30 knot winds from the SE by noon. But where did it go? Hardly a breath of wind anywhere to be seen. It really didn't matter as this paddle was all about being with a bunch of friends celebrating Reale's birthday and she wanted to go paddling.

Reale can really navigate her kayak both from inside and outside the cockpit. :-)

After a ceremonial dump of the birthday girl in the water by yours truly :-) we assembled on the water off the Gyro Park beach in Cadboro Bay. While waiting for everyone Reale demonstrated her dexterity skills by playing on the top deck of her kayak. She really loves her kayak!

Our group of 12 left Cadboro Bay and headed towards Discovery Island for lunch but first we decided to play in the flood tide race at Baynes Channel that was just off the marker at Cadboro Point. In all the times we have been going over to Discovery Island I have never seen a flood tide race before when the current was only running at around 3 knots. But then again, Baynes Channel always shows a different face every time we cross her no matter what the conditions are. 

Making our way across to the Chatham Islands we gathered in the slough that is a popular current training location. Robyn and I did our first currents course here with Yves of Go Kayak who was also on this paddle with us. Today however there wasn't much water movement but it gave us a chance to relax a bit while we waited for Michel to catch up with the rest of us. It also allowed myself to get out of my kayak and stretch a bit as my hips were giving me grief. That has never happened before but I think I know why.

The "slough" catch area was pretty still today. Still, a beautiful day for a paddle!

Our next stop would be the Discovery Island Marine Park campground for lunch so we headed through the middle of the islands and then along the eastern shoreline of Discovery to the park. There was just a little bit of a swell coming in that allowed some of the group to play a bit in the surge waves near the lighthouse.

Discovery Island in the distance. Not a storm cloud in sight

Arriving at our lunch stop we basked in the early fall sunshine. The weather patterns over the past couple of weeks have started to turn towards the normal wet season after an unbelievable dry summer. There won't be many more days like today as we head towards winter so we better enjoy it.

L to R: Robyn, Jo, Susie, Beverely, Michael, Walter, Michel, Patti

The paddle back to Gyro Park was pretty uneventful in terms of the sea state and weather. Nothing but glorious sunshine and hardly any current activity in Baynes Channel. For me however it was a different story. Just entering the channel I found that I was experiencing excruciating pain in my hips and simply found it difficult sit upright and paddle. I never thought I would have to ask for assistance while paddling but today I gladly accepted the fact that I needed a little tow help. Robyn and Susie were paddling close by so they teamed up to in-line tow me back across the channel to Flower Island. It was just like on our PC3 course but this time it was "No Duff". Thanks girls!

The source of my hip pain? I decided to start my running routine the day before and even though it was only a short 20 minute session I felt soreness when I woke up. Thinking a good paddle would limber me up I was mistaken as my hips muscles became increasingly sore throughout the day. Looking back at it now it might have been a good day to stand down but at the time of launching I felt pretty good. One thing for sure it's time to get back to my daily yoga Yin practice which I need to do anyway to improve my core rotation in the kayak.

Coming up next: Rock Gardening with Rowan and Costain (SKILS)

2014 Paddle # 52 - Baynes Channel / Discovery Island
Distance: 9.60 nm (17.77 km)
YTD: 276.65 nm (512.34 km)

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