Saturday, December 5, 2015

A first winter paddle

Yesterday, Friday, we had our first dump of snow when 30 cms fell.  Today six of us met at St. Philips for our first winter paddle.  Technically its still not winter but it sure felt like it.  No need to carry the kayaks to the slipway.  We just slid them along in the snow.

Once everyone was on the water we turned south into a gentle breeze.  Derek gave his new strip built Back Pearl its first taste of salt water.

Cathy cruising along snow covered rocks.  The trees were dusted with snow looking like someone had sifted icing sugar on them.

Terry sizing up the wave pattern before committing to passing through the rocks.  Quite one moment, waves crashing skywards the next.

Dean checking where everyone else was.  I thought the rocks looked darer and more sinister with the white of the snow.

The temperature was  few degrees below zero, -6 with the wind chill.  Where there was a larger flow of water it was liquid.  Here, the water seeped out and we had our first icicles since last winter.

Arriving at Topsail Beach.

We stopped to stretch our legs at Topsail Beach.  Derek boiled the kettle for steaming hot tea.

The sun came out and we could feel the difference as we made our way under Topsail Bluff.

The water changed colour from inky dark to aerated indigo.

The wind picked up to about 25 kms and the sea quickly became more active with a good smattering of whitecaps.

Back in St. Philips I paddled up the fresh water river to wash the salt out of my gear.  I was warmed up from the exertion of making distance at the same time making sure I stayed upright as waves coursed over my spray deck.  I didn't feel the cold as I splashed around so I didn't have to rinse everything out at home.

A usual when we paddle out of St. Philips we stopped for hot drinks at the restaurant by the beach to debrief the paddle.  Thanks to Brian, Cathy, Dean, Derek, and Terry for sharing the day.

Dean has his pictures from the day posted on his blog.


  1. "Technically it's not winter" goodness you Newfoundlanders are tough :o)

  2. Not sure if tough is the right word. Maybe daft *lol*. Its not so bad Douglas once you get going. Not so bad either going into the water as its warmer now than the air temp.

  3. Hey Tony, Thanks for the pix! Great first winter paddle with some great paddle buds! :)

  4. Youse *lol* welcome. It got gnarly on the way back; really impressed with how you handled it!