Saturday, April 19, 2008

It's gotta be spring, cause it's a two for one sail.

I finally worked on the old truck today.

I had no choice, as she didn't want to stop, and to avoid the embarrassment of having to get it removed from the land-o-wash, I deemed it necessary to have a boo at it.

I loosened up the front brakes, with a sledge and some used transmission fluid.

After a long struggle with the back brakes, I finally admitted it would be a job for the professionals.

Too much to do and too little time, and of course, with the wind pushing from the north east, and with the sun screeching through the westbound clouds, gave me two great resons to be on the water.

Just gotta go.

I went in the house, cleaned up and prepared for yet another venture.

While retrieving my cell phone from the charger, Martine informed me that tomorrow we would be getting guests from the States 'via Corner Brook', and that
they were interested in renting a double kayak, weather permitting. Just what I wanted to hear, yippee, a reason to get another boat out of storage.

So I hiked down to the Harbour to my friend Stefan's place, where I store the kayaks for the winter.

I thought I would kill two birds with one stone.

So I put two boats in the water, and towed the old yellow double with the single.

Good workout for the shoulders, as once you're on the water, you've made the commitment, and it's your responsibility and yours alone to get to home-base.

You know, evan as a child I always liked the idea of towing something, perhaps it has to do with always having one of my younger siblings on a sled or a stroller or being towed by my grandfather in the flat.

Not sure, but it's a nice feeling that triggers warm fuzzies in my inner man.

I arrived at the Inn, only in time to go back out on the water with Christopher, one of our guests from Switzerland.

As we headed down the coast, we stuck close to the shore as the wind was gusting to 20 knots at times.

You know, I find that I treat people as if they were one of my siblings or a tourist, as I point out the simplest things as if they had any significance in the real world.

It's just something I do, I draw from the rocks and the cliffs, stories that have to be told, or not!

But I do anyway. The way I see it, we hear stories from around the world daily, that have no bearing on us, so why not share with someone that Richard's Head, is the highest point in Burgeo, and that on occasion I've been known to take the odd enthusiast up to its summit.

Or why not tell them that above the rock face of Boar island's west point, one might find a pair of nesting Bald Eagles.

But that's all small talk and it don't matter, or does it?

So tonight the singles are on the dock and the old yellow double awaits tomorrow's guests.

It's all great fun really, water, sky, and the great outdoors.

Just a little dab of liniment for my shoulders and I shall call it a day.

And as the winds lift the wings of the eagle, so too has my spirit been lifted today.

Another day @ Dorim's Wharf:

Friday, April 11, 2008

Pushing spring.

While cleaning out the yard in preparation for yet another exciting season of kayaking, I couldn't help but put my 17 foot Cape-Horn out on the edge of the wharf.

It is as if by doing so, one could hurry spring along.

In order to put the kayak on the dock, I had to walk over 100 feet of winter-packed snow that was still 6 feet deep in places.

I gently tied the bow unto an anchor that had wintered the pier, and wrapped the stern and rudder section with 5/8 inch poly mooring. The other end was clinging to a 350 big block Chev that was some 200 feet out into the harbour.

Was the kayak going to blow away? Not on my shift.

You see I had decided to permanently keep the kayak on the wharf because over the winter, and while launching, I had nearly slipped in to the wet,and on occasions, with not much to cling to but an ice-coated grump, much like an exaggerated corn dog with a head.

So here you have it, she is waiting for me out on the wharf, like an old obedient bird-dog waiting for its master's nod, just to slip into the sea for its next fetch.

The only difference is that the dog has to be fed and the Kayak don't.

So the question is: Have you walked your kayak today?

Life has its seasons and in perfect order.

Another day @ Dorim's wharf.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Dorim's Kayaking Blog

The winter is long and the days are short, yet to get out on the water in one of my kayaks breaks up the season.

I was kayaking along the Reach early one crisp winter morning, and just as I paddled from the calm of an inlet into the greater North Atlantic, a 14 foot aluminum boat came out of a well-hidden tickle.

It was crewed by a couple of pumpkin-skinned lads hurdled up like two snails on a piece of driftwood.

With the 9.9 Evinrude roaring full out, and a couple of 12 gauge shotguns hugging the rowlocks, it was like something you would see in the swamps of the great Mississippi.

After realizing their "near-miss" they came about face and motored back my way. I was not overly shocked, as I had heard the engine a few seconds prior to the wake of their out-spray.

As the motorman throttled back his engine with one hand, grabbed his 12 gauge with the other, the boat slowly came alongside my kayak.

I had just maneuvered the roll of their wake, and now they decided to turn around. "What now?" I thought, "Are they going to ram me, or use me for target practice?" It's funny how the mind goes! Too much TV, not enough kayaking.

Funny enough though, as we chatted about the ice moving in to the harbour, and how the ducks were on the move today, the man in the bow of the boat wondered why I would be out and about in a little kayak. He questioned its safety and what would one do if it flipped.

I just chuckled and said "I'd be more concerned about your cigarette igniting the gas, or your shotgun going off than my flipping the kayak."

"Not much chance for that happening" said the motorman, "I smoke all the time back here and ain't had a problem with the gas exploding yet."

On that note we went our own merry way, and as they sped past my starboard quarter, I was left in a cloud of smoke from the engine exhaust mixed with cheap roll your-own tobacco.

I smiled and carried on my journey down the ice-packed coast, only to be greeted by yet another seal resting on an ice-capped sunker.