Sunday, January 20, 2013

Scappoose Bay – High Water.

 Scappoose Bay – High Water.

You know, I have found that it is important to back to your favorite places during different seasons. At least if you live in a place that has seasons. Here in the Pacific Northwest we have a number of factors that play across the landscape. In the summer we have Sun and Heat and un-ending blue skies. The flowers bloom, the trees fill with green. The rivers and waterfalls shrink and sometimes even disappear.

And then in the winter, the leaves fall and what was once an impenetrably wall of green, is now a vast view of the mountains. Hey. Way cool. The rain falls, the rivers swell, the waterfalls shoot from their cliffs. The snow and Ice glisten in the low sunlight. And it is Fraking cold.

Today I went back to Scappoose bay for another kayaking outing with 3 of my kayaking friends (1 old and 2 new). We got started a little late, but even so, we had time to paddle our way up the main channel to the bay and enjoy the maze of tree's and estuaries that wind through the pluff mud flats. The water was a few feet higher than in my previous summer and fall posts. High enough that we could get ourselves into more trouble hitting low water where once would have been high and dry grass lands. It was pretty funny. Also very beautiful. The water was calm and mirrored the local volcanos as well as my friends kayaks.

The birds seems to segregate themselves into different nesting areas. Last time I played with the eagles. This time we paddled through the demesnes of the Egret. Those pterodactyl like predators were everywhere. But they were so elusive. They would be sitting, invisible in the tree in front of us, and then give their harsh reptilian cry and launch into the sky, before we could bring our cameras to bare. Dammit.

This was a good skills learning trip for me. Amy and Kris, my new kayaking friends, have a lot more experience than me and make it a habit to practice their paddling skills when they go out. Once I asked what they were doing they were friendly enough to share.

I asked Amy about “edging”, something Chip and others have mentioned often enough, and though I know in general what it is, I still just don't GET it.

So Amy says, “you need to shift you hips to bring up your left side. Just raise your left knee. Here, let me steady your boat for you”, and she puts her blade in the water and does this back and forth quick stroke and her boat just slides sideways right over to me.

What the Frak, “Forget about Edging, what was that you just did”?

“oh, that? That is called <some word that I know but can't remember>”. And she taught me that. It was SO COOL. Now I can go sideways.

However, Here is a picture of Amy Edging. Now you can be confused about it too.

As you can see, Mt Saint Helens came out to play toward the end of the day. That was nice. The weather was really fun today. Started out really foggy (“It is Mordor down here”) And COLD. How can it be foggy and still be below freezing? Why doesn't the fog freeze? ANSWER: It does freeze. Mainly to the trees. But also to the little plastic walkways on the dock.

Yes, That glistening is Frost in the Trees.

At one time I ran up on an invisible underwater log (I was trying to take a photograph and I thought for sure I was going over there for a second). I put my hand down into the water to balance myself and push off the log. And it was Fraking Cold. I mean. Holy Moly. I was wearing my new 3mm wet suit, and I thought that would protect me, but I am pretty sure that if I went over I would have been in a LOT of trouble. And my silly wet suit and boat pump weren't going to help me much. Of course, I could probably have climbed up on the shore. And Cursed.

A bit of a maze back there.

Back in the Trees

As always, Scappoose bay was fun. Lots to explore, and very protected. A great place to go to learn and explore.

Oh, and this was my first trip out with friends and with Journey. My she is fine.

Cheers !!

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