It's been a while since the last post, but that's because we have mostly been paddling the same places. Buddy Mike and I have been trying to coordinate a paddling trip to Monterey, and managed to do that last week. We drove up (about 3 hours) and checked into our hotel on a Tuesday afternoon, did some walking and eating, drinking, etc., and got ready to paddle the Elkhorn Slough on Wednesday morning.
I had paddled there some years back, with a launch from Moss Landing. On that day, we paddled approximately 7 miles back to the far reaches of the slough. The paddle back, against both wind and tide, was probably the most strenuous I've done. To avoid that, we planned to launch from Kirby Park, which saves about 5 miles of paddling in (it should be noted that those are 5 very pretty paddling miles, but been there, done that...). The morning was a touch foggy, and remained gray with temps in the 60s, perfect for paddling. We timed our arrival at Kirby Park for just before 9 AM, giving us over an hour to paddle into the far reaches before high tide, which was just after 10 AM. When we drove around the slough to Kirby Park, we found the road closed, and later found out that it had been closed since February when the road was washed out in a storm. We had seen no mention of this in our internet reading while planning the trip (I have since added the closure comment to Google Maps).
We drove back to Moss Landing, confirmed the road closure at the Monterey Bay Kayaks shop there, and launched from the public ramp for $11. We paddled back in for about 3.5 miles, to where a small island exists, and could see the Kirby launch site from there. There are railroad tracks (and 2 bridges) that cross the slough, so we hurried to the shore to catch a glimpse of a passing train. While paddling the tide had turned, and we took the flow back to Moss Landing, although there was some wind that started late morning. We are used to seeing seals and otters, and were not disappointed as they are plentiful in the slough. There were many paddlers out by now, mostly within a mile or so of the Moss Landing docks, where kayak rentals are popular. On the way back to the ramp, we paddled out toward the harbor entrance, but didn't go out into the ocean, as the swell was fairly large and tight. A great morning of paddling. The only low point was that I left my nearly new Sqoosh butt pad at the ramp, and hoped to find that someone had turned it into the kayak shop. They didn't, but most paddlers would have. It's a fine group.
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Saturday, February 1, 2014
Another gorgeous winter day on the Central Coast. Blue sky and warm sun beckoned this morning, so I paddled from Pasadena Point in Baywood, with the tide still on the way in. Despite the direction of the tide, I paddled into Morro Bay and eventually over to the sand spit, where I hiked over to the ocean and watched the remaining surfers on the south side of the south jetty trying to catch some final rides as the wind came up and blew out the surf. The tide had reached its peak by now, and the wind on the bay started up as well. I paddled south along the sand spit and met Alice and Steve, who were visiting from Portland and enjoying the sites of the area. They were paddling a double Klepper kayak that they bought new and have paddled all over for the past 45 years. Canvas on a wooden frame, the boat was in great shape (so were they) and was in original condition except for one newer seat. What and advertisement for Kleppers! I've paddled my Necky Kayook for 14 years now, and it is still in great shape, but I doubt that it will have the longevity of that old Klepper. Wait and see....
Friday, January 3, 2014
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Christmas Eve 2013, we had a household full of friends and family. Now that we have reached Grand parent status, it is tons of fun to watch our children interact with each other. Travis and Lisa have two children (Mela, 7 and Daxon, 3), and Bennett and Brittany are expecting their first (a girl) in April. Joining us were; my Dad, and the Neelands-Gentry and Beckett families. Katia Beckett grew up with Travis and Lisa, the closest thing to a daughter we had until Emily's entry in '92. Susan and I were so pleased to host with long-time friends Cindy and Ross (parents of Katia). Here's a pic of our combined progeny:
Saturday, November 23, 2013
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Saturday, October 5 was an unusually warm day at the central coast. When the thermometer on the shady side of the house read 70 degrees at 8:15 in the morning, I assumed it had broken. I was wrong. The Santa Ana winds came to the central coast and made for a different kind of kayaking. There were two main differences: the winds were from the east, and they were warm. Lorelei, Ron and I paddled from the dock the marina on the embarcadero in Morro Bay, hitting the water at around 9:30 AM. The tide was heading toward a high of 4.6' that peaked at 11:14, so we headed south on the incoming tide. Our plan was to paddle to the back bay and hang out until the tide turned and then paddle back. We paddled slowly along the sand spit and kept our southerly heading where the spit goes SSW. This put us a few hundred yards offshore. The winds really picked up, and we had 1-2' wind waves on our port side, which made for some nice rolling and splashing; also requiring close attention to position. After a bit, we decided to head down-wind (west) and take out on the spit for a short hike to view the ocean side. With the winds from the east, the breakers would spray back up and behind the waves, an interesting look. We took our time and enjoyed Lorelei's home-grown apples. When we returned to our boats, the tide had started going back out, and the wind had died down. We crossed the bay to the eastern side and then continued north past the museum and back to the dock.
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Saturday, November 17, 2012
The forecast called for rain all day. Ron, Lorelei and I went out strolling around Baywood in a light rain, which came and went. The air was warm and the breeze slight, making our walk only slightly different than any other. With more rain promised, kayaking was put on a "probably not" list. We changed our minds, though, and Ron and I went paddling in the back bay just after the high tide. It never rained at all after we got in the water. We were treated to the usual sites of the back bay, paddling past Sweet Springs and out to the sand spit. We heard gun shots from duck hunters, but saw none. What we did see was a fine moving feast enjoyed by dozens of diving pelicans and breaching seals. Another perfect day.
Sunday, September 16, 2012
Saturday, August 25, 2012
Saturday, August 11, 2012
I didn't plan to kayak today, but needed to go to Morro Bay to get some propane, so I decided to put my boat in at the Tidelands Marina and paddle north to the rock (Morro Rock) and back. It was a gorgeous day on the bay, and the tide was just cresting. Before I even got in the boat, three dolphin were spotted just off the dock, and heading north toward the harbor entrance. They were in no hurry. I paddled near them and took a bit of video, and then paddled up ahead and just sat with my iphone ready to record. I missed the first dolphin as it surfaced only a few feet from the bow of my kayak, and though I couldn't see what I was recording because of the glare, did manage to get a bit of them as they went by. A feel good experience. The rest of my paddle to the harbor entrance and back was very nice, and I spotted the dolphin again near the rock as they headed out toward the ocean.
South Pender Island. The scenery must be experienced to be appreciated. We paddled from a put in spot 2 miles from their waterfront home, and switched paddlers; Ted taking my place as he and John continued for another few miles and back. Later in the day, Ted and I paddled back to the original put in.
Friday, July 20, 2012
On the way back, I called my best bud Doug on the occasion of his birthday (also Bastille Day).