June 17, 2008
Today, I drove north from Los Osos, looking for driftwood to use to build a bench. I had no exact destination in mind, and stopped at various beaches from just north of Cayucos on up to San Simeon cove near Hearst Castle. I found a few pieces here and there, and had fun hiking them out. At San Simeon cove, I chatted with Todd from Sea for Yourself Kayak Tours, who was just stowing boats from the day's tour. He is quite knowledgeable, and easy to talk with. The cove looked so good, I decided to paddle out. The only gear I was missing was a pair of trunks. Oh well, the surf was small, and I figured that I could get out without getting my shorts wet. I was wrong, of course, but not too bad. The wind started to pick up just as I was getting in the water, and, once through the surf, dropped my rudder and began turning the opposite of where I intended. Busted a line somewhere (will find out tomorrow) and had no rudder control, so up it went. I love my Necky Kyook (the model, not a typo), but it has one major flaw. It doesn't track worth a darn without a rudder! Lots of leaning today, some one-sided paddling and sweep strokes to keep it pointed where I needed to go. After sponging out some water, I paddled across the cove to the protected shore and explored. Since I was alone, I didn't try anything risky, and stayed out of the small caves and away from the washes. Still a pretty paddle, and I plan to do it again with company (and my swim trunks and rudder). Beach landing no problem in small swell.
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