Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

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

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Winter Surf

Today went kayaking in the surf at Cemaes Bay with Roger (from Coastal Spirit), Barry & Justine. Offshore wind force 6 and 'bloody cold'. I am not used to paddling in rough conditions with pogies on. So I used them intermittendly to warm the other hand and surfed without them. The velcro on the pogies was strong enough to not sweep them off my paddle. For the rest I was comfortable in 3 bottom layers and 4 top layers under my dry-suit and a fleece-lined Kokatat Balaclava under my helmet. Hearing was seriously impaired as the wind sounded like a force ten through the holes in my helmet.
On my way out the first time, I only stopped paddling when I was out of the surf zone completely. Only to find the rest much further back in the surf zone. Heading back in again was in a controlled fashion as surely any surf-ride here would end up in a loop. Turning in the wind was off-course extremely difficult and most rides ended in a 'refreshing' bongo slide. The surf subsided and around 14:00 we went back ashore.
Is it coincidence that my more recent encounters with rough water start with the roughest of the day and subsiding thereafter? Thus no gentle 'breaking-in' and build-up for confidence building.
Tomorrow I am traveling back to the Netherlands to be back again in Anglesey end of April.
If you not already have noticed the buzz on Justine's great new film "Kayaking the Aleutians", be sure to check out the trailer and pre-order at CackleTV (or Zeekajak.NL) before the 14 february release date.

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