Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Weekend Kayak - Water Logged

So my wife and I took our kayaks out for their inaugural trip. We went from the City Dock in Fredericksburg to the Little Falls Dock. It wasn't quite a straight trip since we sent upstream about a mile before heading back downstream. So from the City Dock to the Little Falls Dock was only about 4 miles but with the up and back portion, it ended up with a total of about 6 miles. For those locals out there, we went upstream and went around Brown's Island, the island that is under the old Route 3 bridge (William Street).

Various portions were very shallow, especially upstream from the City Dock. Even bottomed out in a few sections. But aside from that, it gradually got deeper and deeper. Saw lots of birds, from egrets/cranes to bald eagles to ducks to geese. Saw lots of turtles. Saw lots of fishermen. Saw only a few kayaks but plenty of boats, some going fast, some going slow. Saw lots of pilings along the edges of the river and even a few that looked like old man-made harbors or ports. Some place for old ships to moor. Old enough that I could see square nails.

Temps were about 60F to 70F. Winds were from the west at 10 to 15 mph so it made things even harder going upstream. Skies were clear. Water temp was likely around 50F. Some portions were cloudy, some clear enough to see the bottom.

Fluids and Fuel:
Breakfast was oatmeal, coffee, and yogurt. During the kayak trip, I drank a bottle of Hammer Perpeteum with some Hammer Gel mixed in. I also drank about half a bottle of Hammer Fizz. I ate two Jolly Rancher candies and felt guilty about it. Post-kayak meal was salad, two hard boiled eggs, and left over hash browns.

Aches and Pains:
About two minutes into the trip I smacked my finger on the side of my kayak. Hurt on and off for a while. My neck hurt when I got out of the kayak, but I'm not used to sitting and rowing for so long.

My blue Emotion Comet Kayak has been dubbed WATER LOG. Since I have a tendency to swamp my kayak and since I'm the Lumberjack, I figured it was a fitting name. My wife called her red kayak RED ROSS although I wanted to call it HEAVY FLO. Also had my paddle, life jacket, safety rope, river map, dry bag full of camera and clothes, water bottles, etc. One side note, my Smartwool socks worked great inside my New Balance Minimus shoes. Even after they got a little wet.

Codename - Water Logged
My original name for my kayak was going to be "The Lumberjack" but I didn't really like it. As I drove to town, the perfect name dawned on me. After all, don't lumberjacks put logs in the river to float them down to the sawmill?

PS - You can see the route here. It's classified as a swimming route but that's just because DailyMile wouldn't let me upload a GPX for rowing.


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