Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Atlantic Paddling Professionals Symposium

On Friday, I'm off to the Atlantic Paddling Professionals Symposium in Port Mouton, Nova Scotia. It is the first regional event aimed at paddling instructors and guides from all three disciplines: canoeing, sea kayaking and river kayaking. The symposium is bringing in instructor trainers from across Canada. It should be a great learning experience. And a great chance to paddle with a super group from all parts of Atlantic Canada. Paddle Canada and the provincial paddling associations are major sponsors.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Placentia Sound

Last Sunday, seven of us headed out for a paddle from Argentia Harbour into Placentia Sound. Argentia is where the longer ferry to Nova Scotia begins its journey in the summer. The photo above shows us getting ready to go. The former US Naval Air Station is in the background. No longer an airport, it is now an industrial site.

Paddling around Broad Cove head and turning east into Placentia Sound, we left the industrial Argentia behind. But not all traces of the American presence. The photo above shows Alison Dyer and an old American property sign. Nationalist sentiments reared their ugly head, and I felt compelled to remove the offending sign.

Entering Shalloway Cove, we found this beautiful brook cascading down into the sea.

Here's Stan MacKenzie with a headland in the background. The high hills along the shoreline of the Sound reminded me of the fiords in Gros Morne Park on the west coast of Newfoundland. We stopped for lunch at the ruin of an old cabin across from Witless Head. Then we fought our way out of the Sound against southwest winds towards Fox Harbour.

We finished up the paddle in picturesque Fox Harbour. Above is Peter Armitage passing by a fisherman and his family unloaded nets and gear from their speedboat. This paddle was my first contribution to KNL's Circle the Avalon Challenge for 2008. We're hoping to complete the Challenge this year. For better photos from this paddle, check out the link to Stan MacKenzie's blog at the right.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Iceberg Paddle

This spectacular iceberg was the goal of our paddle on Saturday (photo credit: Dave MacDonald). Fifteen KNL members launched from Turks Gut, just south of Brigus in Conception Bay.

Paddling north we found the archway above, which Paul Benson is paddling through with a big grin.

Here's the pinnacle iceberg with my partner Isabelle.

The other side of the iceberg with Dave Dobbin and Laura ?

From the iceberg, we paddled north into Brigus Bay, where we stopped for lunch. Then we headed north towards Cupids. Coming around around the headland we passed through The Arch above.
Where else but Newfoundland could you have such a great paddle, just an hour's drive from St. John's.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

It's May and it's snowing!

You just have to love the weather here in the so-called spring. Today is May 11 and it's snowing out! I was out to Gull Island in Witless Bay for work today with two other Canadian Wildlife Service biologists. It was a bumpy ride out in the Zodiac. Lots of icebergs about. Just when we started our seabird work on the island, the snow started. It was cold and windy but we finished the work quickly and headed back in the Zodiac. It was snowing so hard, we could not see the shore. It was good to get the work done today, since there are big winds and seas forecast for tomorrow and another storm coming up from New England later this week.

I sure hope all this cold weather is gone for next weekend's Retreat in Terra Nova!!!!