Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Yesterday I went on a Peddelpraat club trip from Zuidbout to Sophiahaven, crossing the Oosterschelde. It was a gorgeous day with highlights of seeing two porpoises and a 'sleeping' squid (Zeekat / Sepiida). Apparently this time of year these squid are in the Oosterschelde to mate. This one did not look alive, until it got startled by Jan and shot off into the deep leaving an ink cloud behind. My first glimpse of these 'owners' of the white skeleton shells that wash upon our seashores.

Chatting to Roland, I learned a bit about sea kayaking in Belgium, or should I say the lack of. In Belgium one cannot legally paddle on the sea above force 3 Beaufort. That might be a reason that more and more Belgian paddlers show up at Dutch sea kayaking events and trips. And the Zeeland tidal estuaries are close enough for great sea kayaking.

Another interesting bit is that in Belgium, sea kayaks need to be registered with a name and have a certificate of registry plate riveted on the deck. Reminds me of a discussion about French regulations were a sea kayak has to have rigid floatation in the form of fixed foam in the bow and the stern; float bags not accepted. If European rules are to be 'harmonized' to the strictest rules of member states, where could I go to paddle on the sea?

No comments: