I listened to the VHF weather this morning and the entire coast on the east and west side was under wind warnings. It sounded like the weather wouldn't get here before mid afternoon, so I took my chances and geared up to go to Cordova Bay as planned. I drove out to the university and saw a strong prevailing east wind. East wind is usually a bad sign here, so I nipped down to old faithful, Cadboro bay. The wind was still easterly with and occasional southerly gust. The bay was full of sailboats, so I assumed nothing too dire was going on.


I put in solo under a very stormy looking sky and a high tide. The bay was flat calm, but I could see the sailboats going into the headwind near Baynes. Two herons were flying low to the water and squawking as they fought over their hunting spots. I noticed a lot of the big kelp beds were missing around Flower Island this time. It's sort of hitting me that summer is coming to a close.


As I went through the little passage near flower, the wind came up fairly strong with 20-30 knot gusts that took my breath away. The northeast wind was still coming through Baynes and chopping up the water pretty well. I got to ten mile point alongside 3 sailboats and I took the secret way through the rocks toward Gordon head. I started paddling up the eastern coast a bit and the swell started getting really confused. After nearly being knocked over by a couple of waves meeting up for a picnic, I decided it'd be best to turn around and exit stage right.


The current was busy ebbing out, so I decided to just go for a ride. I didn't really get slowed down until I got to the point of Jemmy Jones Island. A flotilla of yachts powered by in the fair winds and I got to see them put away the jibs and pull out the spinnakers for the trip. As soon as they passed, I made a run for it across to cattle point and took the scenic route down to the yacht club.


On my way down, I got a few snapshots of all the oystercatchers in the area meeting up for a family reunion. They all peeped and flapped as I moved by, but they held still for a few shots. I try my best not to disturb these guys, because they're a bit on the threatened side. I made my way in behind the Yacht club's breakwater and had a look at all the boats. I saw one of the boats from the Swiftsure, Black Out, moored outside the marina. This was a fun little solo paddle. My poor GPS has kicked the bucket (I somehow broke the circuit board inside :( ), so I've drawn a map of the trip by hand for now. Hope to have that fixed soon.

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