Sunday, October 01, 2006

Sea Kayaking

My sea kayaking takes a distance second to mtn biking, but when do go out and paddle, I really enjoy it.

Yesterday I went out with a teacher friend in the double. It was his first time out, but he's young and strong and figured he could handle some open water paddling.

We set out for an island 3 miles off shore, due north. The waves were coming in from the west, so were perpendicular to the boat.

A school of about 20 dolphins swam about 10 meters to our port side. We tried calling them over, but they weren't interested.

We reached the island but there was no place to land, so turned due east and we paddled another mile and 1/2 to my favorite island in the area, Isla Cachicamo (armadillo island), which is only about 200 m long and 50 m wide. Cachicamo has a couple of great features; one a barrier reef that protects the beach and doesn’t allow boats to land. There is one narrow pass through the reef which a kayak can pass either high or low tide. The second feature besides the nice beach is a great shady acacia tree on the east end of the beach (the only tree on the island…the rest is covered with cactus, thorny shrubs, and aloe plants.

Being the only people on the island, we pull the kayak above the high tide mark, get our coolers, and walk to the tree where we spend a couple of hours, eating our lunch, and watching boats pass. In my cooler was a Gatorade, a couple of sandwiches, and a 6-pack of Solera (premium beer) 250 ml cans. Those were probably the best beers I’ve had in Venezuela! What a place to enjoy them!

About 1:00 or so, we decide we need to head back, so we get back in the boat, and paddle about 2 nautical miles SSE to the east side of Isla de los Monos. We follow the shoreline of Isla Mono and round Punto de Oro, head WSW back to the marina were we started.

The total paddle was about 13 nautical miles.

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