May 20, 2007

First paddle of the year

I finally got my kayak out for the first time yesterday. I've been neglecting it terribly since last year. Getting the new bike last year got me all excited about cycling, not to mention that it's vastly easier to throw the bike on top of the car than it is the kayak. I think I had the boat out about a half dozen times last year, compared to close to 50 bike rides (which is a pittance to the serious cyclists out there). It's been so long since I last paddled that I had to stop and actually remember how to tie the boat on the car.

It felt great once I was out on the water, though. I launched late afternoon on the Monocacy River at the aquaduct, near where it joins the Potomac, and paddled upstream to the Rte 28 bridge. The little rapid there was too rough to paddle through upstream and I didn't feel like dragging the boat, so that was my turnaround point. Heading back downstream, I practiced some low brace turns (a very elegant turn that's fun to do), then headed out onto the Potomac. Ended up anchoring myself against a log sticking above the surface midstream, releasing the seatback, and lying back to chill out for a while. Late day, watching rays break around the edges of cloud that had passed in front of the sun while listening to the water trickle along under the hull of my boat... All in all, a damned nice way to spend a couple of hours.

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