Saturday, December 31, 2011

Newbury Neck

It had been breezy all week, but the forecast for Friday looked good- just for one day before the wind picked-up again. So, continuing my exploration of Blue Hill Bay, I drove to Newbury Neck in Surry and set-out to paddle around the southern end.

The eastern shore of Newbury Neck is consistently settled, but spacious with grassy pastures spreading down to gravelly beaches. I paddled against the incoming tide, but managed to catch eddies close to shore, and made good time to High Head. I slowed-down to drift below the serpentine igneous bluffs, dripping with icicles. The land here may be all privately-owned, but the owner, who has a house on Burnt Point, has left much of the southern end of the neck untamed and beautiful.

A dark, massive front eased-in from the west as I rounded the southern end, connecting the dots with recent trips: Long Island, Blue Hill, Morgan Bay. I took a fifteen-minute break on Jed Island and spent the next fifteen minutes restoring feeling to my fingers with some all-out paddling.

Back at the car, I loaded-up, aware that it would probably be my last paddle of the year. It was a good way to end 2011 and think about the year to come. There’s always something new to find out there, always more to learn, whether it’s how best to maneuver the boat, or learning the lay of the land and sea. The more I discover, the more I feel almost overwhelmed by how much I don't know, by all the places on the chart that I haven't seen, and the more driven I feel to keep at it.

So, with such an obsession, who needs resolutions? Happy New Year.

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