Adventures on the Blue


Tonight was one of those few after work paddles that happens to be on a perfectly still, warm summer's night. It always feels like a dream to be paddling at sunset and tonight nearly put me to sleep in my cockpit :). I put in at VCKC and had it in mind to head down to jutland if the currents were well behaved. The parking lot was jammed with dragonboaters doing last mnute training for the Victoria Dragonboat festival..


The current under the Tillicum bridge was about a 2kt flood, so it was a bit dicey looking. Some kids were up on the cliff beside the bridge yelling, "you're gonna fall in." Not tonight though.. the water was all going in one direction and wasn't much of a challenge to overcome.. I paddled out the other side and waved back to the kids as I paddled toward the inner harbour.


It was such a lazy and calm night, I just lily-dipped my way down to Jutland to find it even more crammed with even more of the large dragonboats. Instead of heading further down to the inner harbour, fearing I'd be a bit in the way, I turned around and got a nice push on the flood past the bridge and up toward portage inlet.


There are a few mute swans swimming around the Gorge right now and they're HUGE. They started swimming over to me, but didn't like the looks of my paddle, so they spooked a bit and headed on the opposite course. I got up to Portage inlet and was overcome with bliss. The skyline had turned fiery orange and the stars were brilliant even before sunset. I took the kayak up along the Colquitz side and noticed a good algae bloom going. The high tide was making it float around in clumps.


I couldn't travel too far up the river because of the goo, but when I turned around I saw the photo above and let out a year-long-pent-up sigh and leaned back just to take in how awesome summer in Victoria is. With the sounds of the road muted and the air so still, it was hard not to be hypnotized by the evening. I left Portage Inlet as the hush of blue-dusk swept across the water. The light was fading, leaving behind an intense orange sky (probably thanks to forest fires in northern BC. I pulled out at VCKC and retained the giant grin on my face until I finally slept. How awesome is that?!

Trip Distance: 11km

YTD: 195km

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Thursday, August 12, 2010 Leave a Comment 1 comment


Today I met up with my paddling buddies for a group paddle from Mill Bay marina. The group was John, Louise, Paula and Tracy - a big group for us :) . Because today was a long shoreline paddle, I expected to be talking a lot and annoying everyone to stave off boredom, but this actually turned out to be pretty good.


What tempered my contempt for paddling along gentrified shorelines with houses no one actually deserves was the crazy amount of wildlife and the company, including their interactions. We launched from the Mill Bay Marina and right off the bat we meet about 15 seals lounging on the damaged and deserted Mill Bay Marina. They all looked up wide eyed of course and realized we weren't a threat and went back to sleeping in the sunshine.


We make our way down the coast and get to see some more crazy damaged remnants from the gale storm that sieged Mill Bay last winter. There are boats up on the shore and stuck terminally in the shallows along the shoreline just gushing water from the last high tide filling their derelict cabins. With some great conversation here and there, the group began to find a new flow and Louise and Tracy got out front of the pack just as we get to the Mill Bay ferry. I realized suddenly that BC ferries' newest ferry bumper has eyes and ears. I call out to the two in front that they're about 10 feet from a pretty huge sea lion on the docks.


Like the seals, he looked up, grunted and let out the signature ORT ORT noise they're so famous for before curling up and sleeping again. Well, not before John and I filled our memory cards with his terrifying visage, though :). The two out front laughed to themselves wondering why us in the back were making a fuss and then connecting eyes with the giant furry thing they just awoke.


We landed on the beach at Bamberton Park. This place is an awesome stop offering full amenities and a great place to watch all types of sea birds. As we pulled ahore, the sea floor was alive with little crabs all either coming or going from shore. The tide comes in fast in the lagoon here, most of our boats were free floating after our short break. Paula brought a box of awesome little muffins to share - it was just what I needed - carbo loading - heh.


The cement factory was just a little ways down the shoreline, so I gave it a visit while most of the crew held back a ways due to tiredness. There's not much to report here, though. It seems they're repairing or removing the deep sea dock and piles that I saw last time I was here. The grounds have barely changed, just more growth of the grass and trees.


One of the neat attractions on the way back home were these little birdhouses on the old pilings of some huge, ruined dock. Sitting in the middle of the little houses, you can hear the calls of these little purple martins (swallows) and it's a nice place just to bob in the boat and listen to them chirp to each other. The wind came up a little as forecast and made the water a little bumpier than the group is used to. It was bit of a slow grind, but we all got back in one piece and no one needed a tow or anything. Swinging back into the bay, the seals were all in the water looking for food and that's what we were headed for too. We went to a little pizza place in Mill Bay for a quick debrief.

Trip Distance: 18km

YTD: 184km

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Sunday, August 8, 2010 Leave a Comment 1 comment


Today was a great day to be on the water, Sun, surf and whales! I put in at cadboro bay for a quick bit of exercise, The conditions were not great for crossing - too much flood current, so I thought I'd do the good ol oak bay circuit.


The water was very calm in the morning and the lucky kayaking class was also putting in on the Beach beside me. The group went over to Flower Island, so I followed them out that way. There were jellyfish of all shapes and sizes all over the place. Apparently they bloom like this periodically. Probably not the funnest place to practice wet exits....... I got up to flower and could feel the current running pretty fierce already. I got sucked through the narrow channel between Flower and the point. Zooming along, I saw two whale boats and a number of fishing vessels giving audience to a gray whale feeding along the east side of Flower Island.


I got reasonably close to the whale and managed to get some photos before I had to correct for the current that constantly pushed my boat north. The whale gave a deep and loud puff on my flypast. This is the first time I've seen whales anywhere near the entrance to Haro Strait, so I ws pretty happy to see nature's just as busy as ever. Following the whale encounter I kept seeing little needlefish jumping clear out of the water and likely into the seal's mouth following directly behind my stern.


I thought I might slingshot around Mary Tod and into the flood for a nice ride home. The sea delivered, The middle of Baynes was running like crazy, adding about 2 knots to my speed! I love it when a plan comes together. The wind began to stiffen a bit on the return trip making for a nice challenging paddle on the way into caddy bay. I got out of the boat on the beach and just sat on the beach for a while watching the dogs go by. So relaxing, I couldn't blog about it until 3 weeks later :)

Trip Distance: 10km

YTD: 168km

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Monday, July 12, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments

I went to Idaho in June as part of a scooter rally held in Farragut State Park and wentfor a relaxing paddle in Lake Pend Oreille in Idaho. Conditions were superb and hot - just a little cloudy as I put in. Unfortunately people don't really watch their dogs on this beach so it's covered in doggie road apples. The launch was fairly quiet in the morning, so I parked my truck and pushed off on the beach area beside the docks.


Today's adventure was to cross over to Lakeview to see a building that had tweaked my curiosity from shore. I started down the bay with my back to the mild wind and paddled to the closest end of the lake to get running along the mountainside opposite to the launch. There were all kinds of neat things laying in the mossy rocks of the fjord including a skeleton of some unknown critter.


What looked pretty close by eye was definitely further than expected. I paddled for about 5km watching speed boats arrive at the shore after over a minute of high speed motoring past from me. The sun began to appear through the clouds and the structure on the bottom shores of Lakeview came into focus. It was an old mining building that fronted on the water, obscuring numerous ruined work barracks behind it. Apparently all of the mining the apparatus along the waterfront came from a number of now defunct limestone mines from as early as the 1800s.


The sun was getting a touch on the oppressive side, so I started heading back to the the boat launch. I totally forgot sunscreen and ended up getting the world's most hilarious farmer's tan. :)

Trip Distance: 18km

YTD: 156km

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Friday, June 18, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


Man it's been a while.. April was just a month of inopportune wind storms in Victoria interrupted only by a bit of vacation near Palm Springs for Coachella. Today was a spectacular morning. Prefect for paddling with friends.. well.. wait... where were my friends? I don't know how I missed the good people from kayakyak, but they were no where to be found. I'm guessing I left a bit too early, though I think I caught a glimpse of the crew later in the paddle, so maybe I was late. Anyway, it was a solo run today and I thought I'd go for a little challenge and do a trip out round Discovery.


I put in at Gyro park among fresh logs washed up on the beach from all the recent wave action. The water had a fun new type of algae bloom that made the water look just like lime jello. I beached about 2 times to run back to the truck after I realized I was missing some key piece of gear from my deck. Eventually I was on my way out of the bay - tons of kayakers out on the water today and the conditions were flat as Die Antwoord's lead singer's flat top.


Out in Baynes channel, the story was the same, very little current and only some stray waves from Haro Strait coming in from the northeast. Chatham was covered in birds and seals. My friends would have remarked, "the seals are doing it, dude." And I would have replied, "and how," but now I'm talking to myself. I briefly caught a glimpse of some other kayaks out around the middle of the Chatham Islands, but they turned the corner and were gone. I continued up the side of Chatham and around to Discovery Island The lighthouse on Seabird Point had a huge bald eagle on top of it and you could see all sorts of birds diving on fish just off the coast. Nearby were the sports fisherman grabbing all the stuff the birds and seals hadn't caught.


Discovery only has a little bit of kelp around it right now, not the huge swaths that usually pop up in summer time. The wind and chop from April blew significant amounts of wood up onto the entire shoreline and rocks. Discovery and the Chain islands had a bit more current running between them, but overall it was so calm and fairly non-challenging, though I was starting to feel the burn at about the 10km mark.. need to get back into the swing of paddling for sure. The Chain Islands were being scouted by a number of eagles looking for lunch and almost every bird was up in the air and making noise. There was a huge rock full of seals. All of them just stared at me as I passed. It was a perfect, reflective day on the perfect, relective water.


I was fighting a light ebb and a headwind on the way back that was slowing the boat to a crawl. I was watching a number of sailboats in full spinnaker trying to gain some way in the light airs. I then heard a huge splash and saw a big seal with ears and a mouthful of sharp teeth about 10 feet away.. then I saw another two of them.. something has drawn the sealions to the entrance to Cadboro Bay ("probably fish," my paddling buddies would say if they were here). I decided not to wait for the sealions to surface again and headed back toward the beach. Cadboro Bay itself was just full of small racing sailboats trying some maneuvering tactics - letting the sails turn the boat on a dime. I got back to the beach and didn't see anyone's car around, so I walked into the village and finally saw John and Louise's SUV, but they were nowhere to be found. Ah well... A good day on the water.

Trip Distance: 18km

YTD: 138km

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Saturday, May 8, 2010 Leave a Comment 1 comment


As is usually characteristic for April, one or two big blows come through as the weather begins to creep up into the double digits. This year it sort of struck at the most inopportune time: Easter break. I was in Vancouver for the Friday windstorm that damaged a bunch of property on Vancouver island. It was howling through the streets on downtown Vancouver bringing with it large amounts of rain. I spent the day looking over the top of my book only to find the coffee on my table. Saturday was a bit more calm, so I travelled home, just to find another massive downpour waiting out in the north part of Haro strait. Today, Sunday, I woke up again to the sounds of windows rattling and webcam images from Big Wave Dave that got me wondering if renting a windsurfing rig for april might be a good plan next year. With kayaking, there's just days it's better not to find out what mother nature is made of. At least it's bright out - I think I'll take the bike out for a spin instead.

Sunday, April 4, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


They really need to repair the bridge down to Esquimalt lagoon. It's really annoying to drive all the way up to Metchosin road just to backtrack down to the peninsula, but who knows where they are in construction of that. Looks like there's a pretty huge hole in the road unser the bridge, too. I've finally got back to Esquimalt Harbour after almost 2 years (it was actually one of my first paddling trips in my current kayak). Today was forecast to be proteced from east winds out in Haro Strait and it was bright, but extremely hazy with fog. There's no access to the side beach by car right now, so I put in on the juan de fuca side of the peninsula to moderate swell.


Wow.. something goofed with blogger and I lost the rest of this post forever.. sorry folks. Have a look at the photos - I can't be bothered to write it all again. yeesh - friggin computers I tell ya. Long story short - awesome day, cool ruins on Cole island and wind turned SSE later on and made for some challenging swell conditions. Popped my spray skirt too soon and the surf landing on the way back in filled my cockpit with water about 6 feet from the beach.

Trip Distance: 10km

YTD: 120km

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Sunday, March 28, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


I woke up to bad news on our planned Caddy Bay to Discovery trip we had planned for this week. Instead of summer doldrums conditions, I see a wind model with 15-20knot winds coming directly into the bay. It was generally pretty sunny and current conditions were favorable for the crossing, but the constant unknown in Kayaking is wind. I decided I would show up at Willows to see if I could sway opinions for a safer launch, but I found everyone already unloaded and on the beach and getting ready to put into the maelstrom:

As usual, I'm more interested in getting out on the water for 3 or 4 hours, and this kind of conditions would have had me off the water in about 45 minutes. I said goodbye to John and the gang and headed out to somewhere a little less insane to enjoy paddling instead of being wet. The former happened; the latter, not as much. I was intending to go to the calmest place, which was Brentwood Bay, but decided just to see if Dallas road was calm. Lucky for me, the wind was blowing ESE at 5-10knots with moderate swell.


I put in at the usual Ogden Point spot right down next to the breakwater on the exposed side. I watched a couple of divers heading in for a day under the sea and kind of laughed at how calm this side of the island was as I paddled around the breakwater into Victoria. The construction at the Ogden Point docks seems to be going will with one significant structure constructed and some new material being placed. The wind was coming much stronger suddenly and had slipped more South. but inside the breakwater, I was pretty protected.


Paddling toward Victoria's downtown, I noticed a bunch of sailboats heading out to enjoy the winds out in the strait. There were also kayaks, surfskis and fishing boats milling around. With a healthy tailwind, I headed up the Gorge spotting a number of seals lazing around on anything warm. I also got in everyone's way in a big canoe competition up at Go Rowing on Jutland. There was a surprisingly large crowd standing on shore. as the winners passed their finishing line and circled back to the dock.


I got up to the Tillicum Narrows bridge and found almost no current. I passed through and paddled out to the VCKC clubhouse and turned around to head back home. It seemed the further up the Gorge I went, the calmer the winds and water. What signaled me to head back was the flags on the buildings had moved even more South. I took the opposite shore back through the Gorge and went back under the blue bridge into the Inner Harbour. The flags on the empress were now SSE and I was getting a bit worried about my chances of getting back around the breakwater in one piece if the voracity of the wind was anything like this morning.


I waited patiently for a float plane to finish motoring into dock and crossed the harbour at Laurel Point. Coming around the coast guard breakwater, I began to see absolutely huge standing waves on the horizon. The sailboat in the photo above was completely visible on minute and a mast the next. I had real concerns of whether I should try this at all or just pull out at the angler's association, but I thought what the heck, I'll try it. I was not prepared for the troughs on the south side, they were shoulder high waves and I was giving poor people on the break water a heart attack. I kept looking over and saw people pointing out at me :/. Big reflecting waves from the breakwater were making for pretty challenging paddling - luckily I only had about 500m to paddle to shore, so I was just careful to keep the paddle ready to brace. I had one close call, but bracing hard helped push me right out of it and the rest was smooth sailing, though I was completely soaking wet from all the wave action across my bow and stern. I was happy to be off the water, but I had a fantastic paddle in the harbour. I packed up and just headed home for a shower to get all the salt chuck off me.

Trip Distance: 15km

YTD: 110km

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Saturday, March 13, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


Today I joined John and Louise at good old Cadboro Bay. Today was intensely sunny! I'm with everyone else and I'm going to call it summer-esque conditions in humble Victoria. The winds were supposed to be light, but ended up being 5-10knots from the Northeast - a consistent swell was coming into the bay and the current was due to be a little over a 2 knot ebb. I was going to give a free ride on Baynes channel to Chain Islands a try, and without mysterious smoke on the horizon, I was resolved to do it this time.


We put in on a sandy beach I haven't seen for a while at Cadboro Bay. The tide had already gone out some. Still getting used to the unloading dance on the new car and what goes where, but I got down to the water and we were off to Cadboro Point. We meandered through the rocks along the shore and saw lots and lots of birds on the way out. Just past Flower Island, we caught a glimpse of a glorious Mount Baker in the morning sunlight. The current was definitely on the ebb, but it really wasn't too crazy. I started my run toward the Chains and John and Louise paddled back along the mouth of cadboro bay to meet me at Oak Bay Marina.


There was some current, but nothing incredibly life changing. The water smoothed out on my way into Baynes Channel thanks to the land blocking the wind. The tailwind and current got me up to about 12km/h sustained on my way down and then dropped off as I approached Great Chain Island, the larger island in the Chains just off Oak Bay Marina. It's pretty fun taking a ride on the current when the chance arises, it's a lot less of a pain than crossing it or fighting it.


Chain Island was full of gulls, Canada geese and crows with a bunch of seals looking on. It was full until a bald eagle decided to stop by sending every last bird on the rock up into the air. The eagle was flying so low that I originally thought the reason the birds took off was me getting too close. Once the eagle passed the birds began to land, filling every square inch of the rock. With the current still dragging me around a bit, I pulled around the back part of the island where I got to see a whole bunch more harbour seals. There's also a lot of weird wreckage all over the island, but it's like 10 feet up. Must have been some big seas through here recently.


I made it back to Oak Bay Marina after being pushed around in the crossing a little. There were lots of boats scrambling through the Turkey Head traffic path from the marina to take advantage of fair winds in the strait. I paddled around Mary Tod island a little and all the birds from last week were somewhere else today. I met up with Louise and John on the other side of Mary Tod Island and we headed back alongside a group of 6 other paddlers out enjoying the beautiful weather. We went back along the south shore of Cadboro Bay and saw a numbe of Herons along the shoreline. We got bach to the beach via the Royal Victoria Yach Club Marina which is a very tight squeeze at low tide. When we got back to the beach, it was much longer than we left. We all celebrated today's outing at the coffee house afterward.

Trip Distance: 13km

YTD: 95km

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Saturday, March 6, 2010 Leave a Comment 1 comment


It looks like the CRD and other conservancy partners have officially purchased many of the hot zones in Western Forest Products' lot sale for a cool 18 million. About 20% of the land up for grabs sold today in trust including many of the foremost properties in the portfolio such as Jordan River, Sooke Potholes and parcels around the Victoria watershed. By all accounts, this seems like a fairly good first step though I have this small niggle about the haste of the sale and the "secret deal" verbiage. I hope Juan de Fuca gets what it pays for and that their constituents were consulted before making a purchase that was a small bit out of their direct means. Altogether though, I.. I think.. just maybe.. the democratic process and activism actually worked here. I'm keeping my ear to the track for more developments in the next few days, especially with the elusive UBC agreement still sailing the horizon.

More details here

Thursday, March 4, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments

Full house

A packed SJ Willis auditorium that had the same morbid tone of the Mega Yacht Marina hearings last year met tonight to discuss the hilarious and staggering ramifications of what the BC Liberals have completely mismanaged. I'm naming the political party, because the fault of this really rests completely on so many of their agents' shoulders - if you don't believe me, there's a much better written review of this stinky public policy disaster by John Doyle, BC's own Auditor General located here and here. What happened in this situation gives us no legal recourse, a very delicate finance and resource management situation between all of the stakeholders and a possible fallout that could put treaty negotiations with the First Nations people in the Sooke and Jordan River back many years. Oh and we have just under 5 days to do anything about it.

Jordan river parcels

What the auditor saw coming in 2008 is now upon us, and please read that stuff it's incredibly written. Western Forest Products is in the process of selling underutilized land assets to recapture the capital it needs to stay profitable. Fair enough, business is rough right now, we're emerging from a pretty heavy recession and some ongoing softwood levies from the USA. On the outside, this isn't a big problem, all of that rural land is packaged for 300 acre lots with only single dwellings and guest houses per plot to encourage industry. The panel tonight, however, showed that this is prime real estate land and looking at the community plans of incorporated Sooke and the plans of the CRD for the unincoporated areas of Jordan River and Shirley, the land may have been strategically selected to smooth rezoning opportunities.

Up for grabs

A good example of what's putting people on edge and one of the reasons this meeting was held with such urgency is big real estate merchants' language Exhibit A and Exhibit B

Undoubtedly the jewel of the South Island Portfolio, the Jordan River Group includes sixteen titles ranging in size from approximately 4 to 722 acres. Encompassing over 2,400 acres in total, the Jordan River Group is situated around the Jordan River town site, and provides an incredible opportunity for a wide variety of uses in a region where there has historically been an extremely limited supply of real estate ... The Jordan River Group is situated in the Juan de Fuca Electoral Area and is mostly within the Shirley/Jordan River OCP area.

Large estate lots;
Considerable merchantable timber; and
Rare Juan De Fuca beach front.

Old home

Some of the points made tonight were pretty straightforward. The coastal communities are not ready to grow at any kind of speed, the tax burden and quality of life challenges stemming from the watersheds emergency services and governance is a major roadblock to development. The community also relies on the forest industry to help buoy up their other expenses, so there's a real incentive not to poke the bear. The First Nations are trying to tie up a fairly lengthy treaty negotiation in the region and really want a solid, long term environmental strategy and cleanup in their traditional territories. If that means they need to own land instead of trusting good-faith relationships with surrounding governments, they seem driven to do it. People from the Island and eco-tourists want a reason to visit the area and not just have a sprawl like what happened in the ukee-tofino corridor.

With no compensation gained from the government and WFP interactions, the onus has been put on the public to solve this one and either buy out the land or get out of the way. One promising avenue may be a model forest plan, which the University of British Columbia proposes in conjunction with other strategic partners, including the CRD. This would give the land to a publicly steered organization, but the plan needs to be hydrated. Some of the other actions resembled the resolution sought for Clayoquot sound, which involved a transition to a UN biosphere or historical site, but with so much second growth forest, and WFP recently logging the areas, it may be a difficult sell. If the idea of excessive fallout isn't cool with you, I'd say at least do the democratic process and let everyone responsible for the blunder hear your voice and where your future vote is headed.

Lots More Information at the Dogwood Intiative site
Wednesday, March 3, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


Looks like I have another public meeting to look forward to in the near future. This is yet another serious environmental and incredibly large-scoped project has quietly slipped into the local news with some tragic timing - not even a week earlier and this would have fallen onto the press room floor for an Olympics story. A paltry sum of money has been printed on the wilderness surrounding Sooke and Jordan river following a land parcel sale by Western Forest Products, and, like the marina and other hustled-in land sales, not even one person in the organizations involved in the sale know what's happening. Now some figures in government are trying to slow the freight train down and see if this land can be put in trust. I have to agree with Anderson on his stance about "increasing irrationality" in public policy on the Island. I'm hoping that if we keep packing the rooms on stuff like this, someone might get a hint.

The public meeting, organized by the Jordan River Steering Committee and Dogwood Initiative, will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday [March 3, 2010] at SJ Willis auditorium, 923 Topaz Avenue.

Speakers include Husband, Chief Gordon Planes of T’Sou-ke First Nation, Calvin Sandborn of University of Victoria Environmental Law Centre and Arnie Campbell of the Otter Point and Shirley Ratepayers Association.

Read the Article Here

Tuesday, March 2, 2010 Leave a Comment 0 comments


So today was my weirdest paddling day on the books by far. This will be less about kayaking and more storytelling. I went down and saw the good folks at Ocean River first thing and got my new whip set up with saddles. The poor Aerostar (aka.Vengabus) finally wore out and now I have a 01 Nissan Pathfinder. It wasn't even worth looking at until the kayak was on top though :). I brought the saddles home, clipped em on and loaded my kayak onto the roof without issue - it's good being a giant sometimes. So far - so good.


I drove down to the bay without incident - the saddles did their job just fine and unloading was just as easy. I was greeted with beautiful, glassy conditions at gyro park. The tide was moderately high and wood was everywhere on the beach still. The sun just wouldn't come out today - just broken grey clouds with little periods of rain. I paddled up the north coast and I met Mike Jackson in his slick looking Greenland 'yak coming back in from a paddle around Discovery Island. He told me he was being sure to get off the water before 3 hit. On my way down I head about a possible tsunami coming, but it was going to be there imminently.

Minutes after speaking to Mike, the VHF pipes up (video above) announcing a formal emergency situation on the water. Ughh. The details of the broadcast are some manner of waves will be arriving from the earthquake in Chile around 3 o'clock. I cut my paddle out to the chains short and hang a right for oak bay just to stay close to shore.


Mary Tod island was packed with birds of all makes and models and they all made noise as I went by. A number of seals were also swimming around me. It was a very calm and serene place to be until the VHF turned on again and announced another terrifying tsunami warning, but here's the twist: The science came through on what to expect. Waves approaching Washington were expected to be around 0.2m. whew. I decided to immediately go out to the chains and enjoy a little quality time with the gulls.


"Not so fast," says fate. some manner of fireball was spilling noxious black smoke up into the clouds, and it looked peculiarly like it was coming from where I live. I was even counting buildings on the skyline and I pretty much assumed I'd have no home when I got off the water. :( What a terrible feeling to have. The smoke disappeared from the horizon about 5 or 6 minutes later and my mind was racing with all the terrors that may have become some part of the city.


Facing an ebbing tide and a fresh headwind, I paddled to flower island and back into caddy bay to head back home. I took a bee line home and found the entire place covered with police tape. ughhh.. a car in one of the back parking lots near my building had caught fire and destroyed a whole lot of the condo's carport. My scooter lives back there and the officer said something to the effect of, "you may not want to look back there." My heart totally sank, but at least my apartment was still in one piece.


A fiery image of what happened in the paper was the first thing I found online about it and my scooter seems to have a front row seat, but I was allowed downstairs to see as much as I could of the scooter from the police line. Luckily the wall was enough to stop the flames from getting up to the scooter, and from a 30 yard glance it seemed fine. JOY. I was able to finally get back to it this morning and it still rides and is just dirty from the flame retardent, wish I could say the same for the cars next to the event :(. If I hadn't gotten off my ass this morning, the kayak would have still been sitting on the ground right next to that BMW. I'm really glad no one was hurt and I hope the police find this guy and soon! And that - was my weird day of paddling.

Trip Distance: 10km

YTD: 82km

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Sunday, February 28, 2010 Leave a Comment 3 comments
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