Saturday seemed like a great day for kayaking. Sunny, calm. Just have to shovel out from Friday night's snow storm. The others want to go Sunday. Oh, yes, the first day of winter.
For some reason it's become traditional to roll on the Solstice. I'm not sure why.. maybe getting closer to the bottom of the world where the sun is hiding?
The first day of winter turned out to be the real deal. 10 degrees and snowing heavily.
The new camera doesn't seem as water resistant (or maybe it's just the "new" part.) I'm not eager to use it with wet neoprene gloves, so there's just a shore shot.
If "2 day delivery" included Saturday, or the local shop hadn't sold the last pair of "large" the day before I went in, I'd have mittens by now, but that's a different story (maybe the same story.. if the mittens are easier to get off and on I may be back to taking on-water photos.)
My official Solstice roll came immediately after seal launching off the pier as the stern landed on the edge of some ice and flipped me.
It was a slow day for the Coast Guard (where we launched.) There were a couple of guys out knocking ice off their boats. They asked if we all had drysuits and how long we'd be out, and warned of the bad visibility.
We took off upwind (North) staying in sight of shore. There were thin sheets of ice in some sheltered areas, and lots of pizza size slush bunnies. About the time we turned around, the wind did too, so we had snow in our faces both ways.
I was starting to emit creaking ice sounds with each stroke. The loom of the paddle had hanging icicles, and the gloves had a hard layer of ice that cracked if I straightened my fingers. Inside the neoprene and Goretex, all was good.