Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Green Island Cormorant colony - Rideau Canal kayak camping trip - Day 1

On Day 1 of our Rideau Canal kayak camping trip in Ontario, Canada, we launched from Kingston Mills lock in the morning, paddled across Colonel By Lake with a lunch stop at Green Island on River Styx.

Green Island is a bird sanctuary and Cormorants rule. A bird sanctuary is not necessarily a pretty place with welcome scents for lunch. And they have no house-keeping skills. But we are kayakers. We enjoyed the break.

Cormorants don't make pretty sounds. They aren't song birds. But I enjoyed their company. I was very surprised how social they are with each other. I didn't know they nested so close to each other in the same tree. They live in colonies. There are 4 nests in this tree.
There aren't many places to stop on River Styx. Paddle this part of the Rideau Canal as fast as you can to get to the good stuff further along the route!

I'm testing a big, plastic, mango-coloured Wilderness Systems Tsunami 165 sea kayak on this trip and started the day paddling with my trusty "made in Maine, USA" Greenland paddle. It was given to me as a gift from awesome paddle buddies PenobscotPaddles last August during a trip to Stonington, Maine, USA.

With my Greenland paddle, I was struggling to move this 62 lb kayak, all my 65 lbs of gear and me, and keep up with three guy paddle buddies, all using Euro blades, paddling lighter kayaks, and with less gear than me.

Something had to change.

After lunch on Green Island, I'll park my GP on the front deck of my kayak and grab my fibreglass power spoons. The Werner Cyprus.

Let's see if I can keep up with the guys after lunch and make my way through the first lock on this trip at Lower Brewers. I've never been through a lock before.

What's this all about? 

See: Kayak camping the Rideau Canal and testing the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 165 sea kayak

Map:

Paddling from Kingston Mills, Colonel By Lake and River Styx - Rideau Paddling Map 2

The trip continues tomorrow.

Happy tripping!
The BaffinPaddler

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