Saturday, June 14, 2014

Baptism by fire, and ice(berg)

Hazen had a new kayak.  There were also a number icebergs in St John's Bay outside of the harbour of our capital city.  Clyde, Dean, Gary, Hazen and I met at nearby Quidi Vidi to baptize Hazen's new kayak.

We emerged from Quidi Vidi.  I was surprised by the swell and clapotis.  We paddled southerly along the red, hematite stained sandstones as our first iceberg came into view.

Hazen picked a good day for the sea trials of his new boat.  The swell was huge as Hazen and Gary look to be paddling uphill, dwarfed by this monster iceberg.

We arrive at the berg.  Another floats nearby with water breaking behind it.  As we got closer we gave it a wide berth because a long ice shelf extended under water which caused the swell to heave up and break in foamy water.

After sizing up the first two bergs, one which calved ice just after we turned our back to paddle on, we reached Spriggs Point.  The swell had only to go upwards as it reached the cliffs.

We knew there were bergs also past Blackhead near Cape Spear.  There were two.  One was flat without features.

The second, further one, looked interesting.

From this side the swell was pouring into the gap between the twin pillars.

From this side it was even more interesting.  This in fact was a berg that has been around for a while and when it first arrived it had a hole through the center and an arch.  Someone with a drone flew through the hole and posted it on YouTube and I suggest it is worth a look.  It is much changed but still a fine sight.

I had paddled clockwise around the berg and saw once again the other guys who had paddled behind it.  Another side, another face.  We were almost at ...

... Cape Spear, the most easterly point of North America.  Over that way lay Ireland but a little beyond us.  Clyde said he couldn't go because he only had one sandwich *lol*

We stayed well off because there are two shoals off of the Cape.  The swell out at the Cape was 2 - 3 meters and caught on the wrong side of the break would have been severely punished.

We had toured four icebergs already.  There was one more which lay in the middle of St. John's Bay.  It too was a monster and we were on our way to pay it a visit.

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