Sunday, February 11, 2018

Calvert Kayak / Butter Pot Camp

Friday I checked the weather and it seemed to finally be a decent weekend, so I asked my buddy Terry if he was up for a paddle from Calvert to Ferryland and back on Saturday.
Peter and Roy expressed interest in paddling earlier in the week so I sent them an invite as well. 
We all met at the Foodland in Bay Bulls Saturday morning and headed out to Calvert.

Terry, Peter, Roy and myself heading out of Calvert.

Terry's Torngat had a close encounter with a rock on a paddle that we did a few weeks before and ended up losing a large chunk of gelcoat off of its nose.  Terry patched it up with duct tape until we get some warmer weather to do a proper repair.
Good as new.

Same as our Brigus paddle, this was a first for us.
Calvert is a really nice place to paddle and has a great coast line for some rock hopping fun.

Peter and Roy
We're just about to make the turn out of Calvert Bay to head down to Ferryland.

Once we got out of Calvert we were open to the south wind, which made things a little more fun.
This stretch was the most enjoyable part of the trip for me.  
We seem to always paddle the same routes out of the same towns, but the last few weeks we have done some different spots and they have been 10/10! Excellent kayaking out here, just like out of Brigus.  This summer I'm making it a point to paddle all the places in between our regular spots.  It seems we are missing to much of the good stuff in between.

Just leaving Ferryland beach after a lunch break.

We meandered through the Islands off of Ferryland just after lunch doing a little more rock hopping and playing in the swell.

It was a quick ride back with a stiff tailwind.

On the way back into Calvert I threw out a little challenge for my buddy Roy to follow me.  I love rock hopping and Roy is new to it, so I thought this was fairly calm it would be a good chance to get him going.  He followed me through every channel and over every rock! Peter and Terry played the game with us.


Nice Shot of Roy again.

Peter enjoying the view.

And after 19kms of paddling we were back at Calvert Beach.  Great day on the water!  It was a bit chilly but really great spot.  I will be coming back here this summer so I can push things a little further, just like Brigus.
Great day on the water bys! 

After our little adventure in Calvert I met up with Dean in Butter Pot to try out a winter camp.
Dean had a spot picked out when I got there so we didn't need to waste time messing around.  Wasn't a lot of daylight left to play with.  It was a short walk to our campsite and we got to work right away setting up tents and tapts for the night.

We did a camp in warmer weather last month and my back was really cold during the night.  I got home after that and made myself a sleeping pad topper.  That combined with my -7 down bag I slept like a baby!  My back never got cold at all and it was about 10 degrees colder than last month.
Dean had his -9 bag and his -7 top quilt so we was good and warm through the night.
Winter camp was a success!

Usually we get jiffy pop... I was too lazy so I just bought bags of popcorn.

Dean boiling the kettle for our sidekicks.

I'm cooking up our burgers!

It was a light snow for 3 or 4 hours after I got there.  Around 9pm it was -4,-9 with the wind chill.

Our candle lanterns hanging in our tents.
I love this picture...looked a lot better in person tho.  Only so much an iPhone can do I guess.

 My new candle lantern Dean gave me on our last trip to Brigus South.

Had an awesome day of kayaking and camping!
Got to paddle a new section of coastline with some friends, and finally got a proper winter camp in.
I'm really excited for the summer!  Lots of things to do and places to go!

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Brigus to Cupids-My New Fav!

I spent a good hour yesterday on good earth trying to find a spot I had never been that looked like a fun place to paddle.  Around the head of Brigus looked interesting so thats what I picked. 
I sent out an email yesterday to see if anyone was interested in paddling from Brigus to Cupids.  Most had other plans,  few were a maybe, Terry was good to go.  We met at the TCH Irving at 9 and headed off to Brigus.

Hell of a view from the beach!  Off to a good start.

Terry posing for Newfoundland Tourism.

Just heading out of Brigus to have a look at the town.

Old church looks pretty nice from the water.

As always we took our time heading out, squeezing through wherever our boats would fit.

Picturesque lighthouse at the end of Brigus Head.

Things began to pick up a bit as we rounded the headland.

This is one of the more beautiful places I've paddled.  
It was a slow go out because myself and Terry kept stopping to play or take in the view.



The swell made for a great bit of fun!

Came across this little cove with a few larger islands close together, so we spent some time playing around here and meandering our way around it all.

Good shot of Terry!

We saw some waves crashing offshore a bit, so naturally we went to take a closer look.
Fun little spot!  We both made our way through after mucking around for a bit.
I dropped the camera to brace on the crashing wave.

After we passed here there was a little cove we headed into.  We paddled close to the rock garden seeing what fun we could find.  Terry noticed a narrow passage through the rocks we could make our way through between sets.  I had a plastic boat so I went first and got a good push through.  I turned around an Terry had already started coming through.  I saw one wave pass under him, then I saw a much larger wave coming behind him.  My first thought was "oh shit". LOL  Next thing Terry was on the face of this wave getting pushed through this narrow channel.  The further he got through, the steeper his boat became.  I remember thinking just before Terry threw his paddle into the water/rocks "holy shit, he's gonna get pitch-poled".  His boat started to broach but the passage was so narrow his bow and stern hit the rocks at the same time. He threw out a brace and the wave passed under him.  What a rush...more so for him, but I was pretty nervous myself lol.  We assessed the damage and found a large chunk of gelcoat and trim broken off the nose of Terrry's boat and a few small nicks in the stern.  Could have been much worse, and all are easily fixed, so we had a few laughs about it and carried on.

This place is 10/10 for paddling, but if you decide to do it be prepared.  There are no outs from Brigus to Cupids, and the conditions around the headland were a decent size.
Making our way into Cupid's for some lunch.

Again, what a beautiful spot!

Not trip would be complete without our post game coffee.

What an incredible place to paddle!!!
Rock gardens, passageways, large conditions, and its beautiful the whole way!
This is my new favourite place to paddle.  I said to Terry the last time I enjoyed a trip this much was two summers ago around the headland at Cape Broyle.
I won't forget this one anytime soon.
Thanks for joining Terry!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

2018 Kick Off!

I get two weeks off for Christmas break and I had planned to do a lot of paddling and maybe throw in a camping trip, but the weather refused to cooperate.  The days I had some free time it was windy or stormy so I wasn't able to get on the water.
Today is my last day of holidays and it was sunny with light winds so I took advantage.

I made a quick run to the Outfitters then came home, grabbed my gear, and took off to Witless Bay.

After two weeks of poor weather, I couldn't have asked for a better day to get out.

Beautiful day with temps at -1, -5 with the windchill.  Made for excellent paddling weather.

Making my way down to Mobile.

Not much to say, just a few nice pictures on my way down.

Getting close to the entrance to Mobile and if you look right at the point you can see there was big swell rolling out there.

Made it up to the entrance to Mobile but the swell was large and I just didn't feel like staying out in that by myself.  My plan was to go into Mobile for a tea and a snack.  This is completely open exposed coastline here, which is beautiful, but can also produce some large conditions.

I ended up paddling about 6km before turning around.

Neat little cabin someone has built on the waterfront.

I stopped a Gallows Cove for my tea and snack.

Nice little pond that runs down the beach.

This has got to be the most beautiful lunch break I've ever had lol... Awesome!

I ordered a new pot set but it hasn't arrived yet and I already gave my old one to a friend so I had to run down to the Outfitters to get a small pot to boil some water.
Excellent little GSI pot.  Only $15.  Ill make a lid for it at work in the next few days.

This is my first time trying out my new ALOCS Alcohol Stove and it works perfect!
I made the little aluminum table.  I got the idea because I was tired of trying to balance my cooking on rocks and uneven ground... problem solved.


Shot of the beach.

I thought this was a nice picture of Gull Island.  There were a lot of whales out here this past summer and they stayed for a long time.  I really enjoy paddling here, and going around the island can be pretty exciting at times.

This was and excellent little paddle!
What a great way to start 2018!
Looking forward to the paddling adventures to come.