Sunday, January 29, 2012

Kayaking as long as it's possible: Ice fever!

Until now the winter of 2011-2012 was exceptionally warm. The crocuses are popping out of the soil (in January!). The conditions for ice skating are bad (I only skated this winter on artificial ice rinks) and the conditions for paddling are perfect (and yet I have hardly been on the water with my kayak this winter). But finally winter is coming: for the next week a period of frost is announced. This morning the temperatures already sank below zero. When the "KNMI IJsverwachting" (= the official Ice Forecast of the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute) is correct, next Tuesday the channels in our region will be ice covered. So I grabbed the chance for a last paddle.

A very calm atmosphere on the Wiericke

I do admit that, as I left the warm house and entered the cold to go to the boathouse, I found the idea of paddling in this cold chilly conditions not very tempting anymore. I reassured myself that I would only do a short 10 km paddle and that I would go home before I even could cool down..

All shades of grey this morning - only the trains of NS trying to add some colour to the scenery

On the water the worries about the cold were all forgotten. I soon got in a flow of relaxed contemplative paddling. I didn't want to stop paddling and before I knew, I was already at the Goejanverwellesluis in Hekendorp.

Goujanverwellesluis in Hekendorp - always out of duty when I get there...

From Hekendorp it's only a short distance to Oudewater, a good place to stop for a warm cup of tea in a pub. But when I passed through Oudewater I didn't want to interrupt the paddle for a break. I just didn't want to cool down. So at the end I paddled non-stop 30 km in 4 hours and 15 minutes (I only got out of the kayak for the portages at the sluices in Hekendorp and Oudewater). The last half hour the energy level dropped and I started feeling hungry and thirsty. No wonder: I was paddling on an empty stomach, missed lunchtime and had forgotten to carry anything with me for a snack or a drink...

As long as you continue paddling no cold hands...

Next weekend 10 cm ice?! I do hope so: I am looking forward to skate this track!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Skate4AIR - paddling for a good cause

This morning 5 paddlers of kayakclub Wyrda took part in the fund-raising action of Marian for Skate4AIR. It was a quit a windy happening. Alas the conditions were too rough for the rowing boats to go out on the river. In last minute the rowers changed the plan and did an indoor-rowing competition on the ergometer). The kayakers enjoyed a nice challenge. It was a "gezellige" and successful happening.