[Photos not available]

Today we went out to caddy bay again. This time we went with a couple of first time paddlers, B.K. and Diane. Bernie showed them the ropes. As Bernie and Paula helped them launch I got in and set to monkeying with my new radio - listening for traffic here and there - most of the transmissions coming from the nearby yacht club this morning. It's neat having that extra layer of security, and I bought a radio that fits in the PFD I have quite well. It's a Standard Horizon HX-270S. So far no bad solder joints and the reception is quite clear - I didn't even have to do much squelching. The weather radio part is also a nice touch. It's been a while since I did ham stuff, probably back when I was in scouts, but most of the lingo is still there.

So back to paddling - I followed Paula out to flower island and then towards cadboro point to see this tidal rip everyone in the group sort of half dreads, the Baynes Channel "freight train." We paddled through mirror-calm water (wind was blowing northwest) out to the islands on the outside of the bay. As we rounded flower island, I really couldn't see or feel much current, though the current table forecasted that the Baynes channel would be on full ebb at about the time we got there. It became much more clear as we got closer to the point though. We poked into the little rock pile just adjacent to the river running around the point.

An active Baynes Channel is a neat thing to watch - the water pressure swirls and pools anywhere it can. You'll be watching a steady stream and then it'll let off for a while and start up full blast again with a few inches of eddy line. The sounds is probably where it gets it's infamous title. Imagine standing not to far from a waterfall and add more bass. Paula wanted to try running one of the more protected streams and I was all for it. Anything to get out and learn a bit. Paula launched into the rip and was quickly swung into the rocks. I watched and made sure she was okay getting out of the whirlpool behind the rocks. Today wasn't the time I was going to get to try running the current. Looks fun as hell though!

Paula and I headed back towards Cadboro Bay and to our surprise, Bernie had brought B.K. and Diane all the way out to a channel by Flower Island. We met up with them and headed back in slowly just sort of chewing the fat. I'm pretty proud of them getting out that far, and they got pretty much ideal conditions to build confidence in their kayaks. We all went and got coffee afterwards - nothing ends a good paddle like a cup of joe.