13 September 2011

A Bit of Adventure

Going out on the lake yesterday was a little different from the other three days-windy vs. calm. We started out late and so chose the bay we were on on Saturday.

First inkling that maybe we should stay on land was turning the corner at the top of the hill. A gust of wind blew the canoe off the car. Of course, the rope on the back was cut, the one on the front came loose. We stopped and put the canoe back on, my son rode on the trunk holding it in place. We unloaded at the landing, got the canoe and supplies in the water by the dock. I started to get in, reached for the pole and voila, no pole. My son had the knocking sticks in his hand, meal/drinks by his side and no pole.

I went to the car: no pole. Had to get in the car, retrace my path to where the canoe fell off. No pole. Hiac. Now what? Then I spotted it. Someone had moved it to the side of the road. Now, we could continue. I decided that we would stick as close to the Landing as possible, in case we had to make a run for it. We only had the pole.

The wind wasn't too bad once we were in the rice bed. I kept watch on the sky, the clouds and the wind. After a couple hours, I decided that we'd start in. That's when we found out that maybe we stayed a little too long. The wind didn't seem all that strong until we headed back towards Landing. {My son claims I got blown around, I maintain that I knew where I was headed at all times.}

I followed the rice out toward the middle of the lake. I didn't particularly relish the idea of muckling through the lily pads. Wrong decision. {What? I meant unwise decision.} That is where the adventure started. What should have been a 15 minute cruise turned into a 45 minute battle with the wind.

All was well for the first half of the trip, a few swings off course was all. I had my son move the rice to the front and situate himself more in the middle. Should have made him get closer to the front. I rested for a few minutes in order to make the crossing over the open water part, about 100 yards. "What are you doing?" "I'm waiting for the wind to die down." "I don't think it's gonna, Mom." "You're right." The currents were not matching with the wind waves. I had it in my mind that maybe I should have put out tobacco for the trip home. {A lady is in the water in that part of the lake. My cousin and I had an experience with her years ago. Alas, no time for that tale.}

We were almost in the home stretch when my son decides to help me steer, forgetting that poling is different from paddling. "Let go!" Too late. The back swung around and next thing, we're facing back the way we came. I kept poling, only sitting down. "Do we have to go in backwards?" "Yeah. I can't get the canoe turned back.

By now the wind is gusting pretty good, white caps were frothing over in their glee, their mad rush to the end of the lake. Finally, made it to the reeds that were only about 50 yards from shore, where we managed to get the canoe turned back around. Now, I had to crouch, at times, sit, in order to move the canoe forward. One last push, thunk, the tip hit the dock and got stuck between the tire and the webbing. Rats.

My son took the pole, pushed a little, then heaved us on shore. Surprised to find it only 1438 hours. Sure was glad we didn't cross the lake.

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