When my friend invited me to kayak in Port Joli for a half day paddle including lunch, I thought “sounds like fun” I had no idea we were out for a high sea extreme workout paddle adventure.
The three of us drove 25 minutes past Liverpool to the Rossingnol Surf shop http://www.surfnovascotia.com/ on Saint Catherine’s Road in Port Joli, a perfect white sand seaside launch.
We were fitted with 1 double kayak and 1 single, I began with a single, both had rudders , we were all experienced kayakers, but inexperienced with a rudder, however we were quick to grasp and like the idea.
We travelled with the wind, staying along the shore across from Thomas Raddall Provincial Park. White sand and a high tide added light to the day even though the sky threatened a dark day. The gathering wind pushed us pleasantly along the shore, with our guide closely watching wind, waves, weather and us.
White sand, sea, coastal grasses, seals and birds lined our travels. As the bay rounded out we stopped for a break, one of my well organized friends had smartly packed dried apricots, almonds and dried cranberries, I wisely added the chocolate I had stashed for just such an occasion. Funny how food can taste so much better with physical adventure.
We talked (perhaps more me) of how a time for napping might be built into a tour for people of a certain persuasion, say over 40. A bit more light-hearted chatting and then we were off again.
Gathering our energies we paddled to the next white sand beach for our lunch stop. The picnic was spread across beach stones and sand and offered brie, garden fresh tomatoes, crisp cucumbers and heritage Italian green beans. We ate tuna and hummus on wraps and delighted in the sand, sun and company.
We switched up rides and I was moved to the double kayak for the remaining journey. We had no idea that the paddle back to launch would be across waves that rode over the nose of the kayaks as the sky grew dark and wind strengthened.
30 minutes of digging into waters that fought to push us back with every wave left our arms feeling like jelly fish. Landing on shore was an accomplishment and we revelled in the extreme workout adventure.
The drive home left us with talk of dread for the following day, as we waited for our muscles to realize that we had asked more than they usually offered.
The next day was a surprise for us all. Happy arms and exhilaration were there to greet us.