Monday, April 23, 2007

Waves, Adrenaline

As we paddled back through the Thorofare, I said to Todd that the great thing about getting out there in rough conditions is that you are focused only on one thing. Much of the time when we paddle, we have conversations, and despite the fact that we live in the perfect place, those conversations often revolve around our day to day frustrations. Our escape from Stonington happen in these trips in our kayaks, and yet we don't always leave Stonington behind.

Today we thought we'd paddle in a direction we don't usually go: west through the Thorofare, out around Andrews Island, and back. The wind and the waves were from the Southwest, and we were headed into Penobscot Bay with its deeper water and long fetch. We expected some turbulence, but... well, got more than we expected. I wish I had more photos to show for it, but I was more concerned about remaining upright. As we rounded Andrews and the waves rebounded off the granite ledges, I lost sight of Todd as he sunk into the troughs. It was, however, quite awesome. Your bow shoots through the crest of a whitecap and plunges into the trough. You try to keep your boat reasonably straight, but face it, you're being tossed around like a toy boat. You want to round the island, but can't easily go perpendicular to the waves, so you make a big triangle.

We like watching videos of paddlers more experienced than us tackling far scarier waters, so we try to keep this in perspective. However, for awhile, there's nothing else sneaking into our thoughts: kayak, waves, breathable air, non-breathable ocean.

Paddling back into Stonington Harbor in a mild chop is almost surreal. No one would ever guess what you've just been through. And of course, this is just a couple of hours for an after-work paddle.

No comments: