Monday, May 29, 2017

Family Fun Day, a paddle to Long Island

Yesterday, a Sunday, we had a beautiful day with next to no wind, so it was a perfect opportunity to take my whole family out for a little adventure.   I loaded up a kayak for each of us, Anna packed a lunch and we headed off to the Cameron Road in Rothesay where there is a nice little beach to launch kayaks.  From there we made our way across to the beautiful Long Island.   For those folk who are lucky enough to have a cabin out on the island, I'm jealous!

Rowan took his Tetra 10 kayak, Fynn was in the Trident 11, Anna took the Predator 13, and I jumped in the Predator PDL.   My hand is still in a cast, so it is hard for me to paddle, so using the peddle kayak allowed me to make the trip across with ease, keep close to the kids if they needed assistance, and take a few pictures along the way.

Rowan has a style all his own!

The water was near glass like conditions making it an ideal day to play on the water.  Rowan, being a typical 6 year old boy, decided he wanted to play bumper boats in the 100+ foot deep and very cold water.   It was all good though as both of my boys are comfortable in kayaks and would have to work tremendously hard to tip them over.

Fynn in the Ocean Kayak Trident 11
Eventually we made out way over to the tip of Long Island that is adjacent to what they call 'The Gut", a small space between the island and a smaller, privately owned one.   From here there is a trail that traverses the entire island.    The trail is a fantastic walking trail, though mostly up hill for well over a km going in.   The incline wasn't steep though, so it wasn't difficult to walk, and the woods are really quite beautiful.

Made it to the shore
After about 2 km, we decided to stop, eat our lunch and work our way back.   The boys had a game of running ahead to hide while Anna and I would try to spot them as we walked back.   I can see us taking this trip again in the near future, bringing along a few more toys for the boys to make an adventure for themselves out of the trip.

Walking the trail on Long Island
On the way back we switched up kayaks, with Anna taking the Trident, I took the Predator 13, and Fynn got to pedal the PDL.   I tied a tow rope on the back of Fynn's kayak to Rowans so as Rowan's energy levels were starting to dwindle.   So he had a great time loading up a water gun and shooting it at us as we made our way back to Cameron Road.

Rowan trying to spray Anna
All in all were were gone about 5 hours, and got to have one of the best family days we have had in ages.   Hopefully we get a chance to do this again in the near future.   For anyone else who may be in the area and would like to give it a try, I highly recommend it, just make sure the wind forecast for the day is 12 km/h or less as the water can get mighty choppy in a hurry out in the middle of the river, and you don't want kids out there getting tired and having to battle waves!

Peddling is thirsty work!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Announcing a new Striper Derby - For Kayakers!!!!

A Striper like Matt's could very well be the winner!
In recent weeks some of the folk who work for the City of Bathurst on NB's Eastern shore contacted me to get my thoughts on a proposed new fishing tournament.   The idea was to put on a Striped Bass tournament in and around the Bay of Chaleur in mid-July when the annual run of stripers is in full swing in the area.

Already in the nearby town of Miramichi, the Striper Cup is held in late May and is one of the biggest fishing tournaments in all of Canada, bringing in an amazing 20,000 people!    Now the Miramichi River and the Bay of Chaleur are two very different bodies of water, and there was no expectation of replicating that type of turnout.   As explained to me, the Bay of Chaleur has some main channels that are deep enough for motorboats, but much of the bay is very shallow and ideally suited to boats like kayaks.    I don't see why we couldn't bring in 100 kayakers to this event in the first year, what do you think?

Here is the Catch n Kayak Facebook Page.

So to help differentiate their event from the Striper Cup, they proposed making this event a kayak fishing tournament with a shore based division as well!   I ran the idea by some friends, got their feedback and gave our thoughts back to the town.

From the discussions I've had, I can promise this is going to be a very well run event with lots of logistics considered and planning in place.    There were some ideas thought about such as teams, making it multi-day and so forth which will not come into play this year, but there may be a questionnaire for participants at the end of the event so that as much feedback as possible can be gathered to ensure next years event builds off this inaugural derby in all the right ways.

Right now there is only a Facebook page in place, but a website is going to be up soon with all the information you will need to understand the rules, prizes, when to be there, where to stay...etc.

Here is what I can tell you.    There are going to be big cash prizes as far as kayak tournaments go.   Over $2500 in cash, plus the chance to win a new kayak or possibly other prizes, perhaps even a guided fishing trip with me in the Fall.   The event is on July 15th, a Saturday and you are going to want to be there on Friday to register and be ready to launch early Saturday morning.    There will be a lunch break midday when the tide switches, and the event will wrap up Saturday evening.

Check out their Facebook Page, and keep an eye out for the website.   I hope to see you there!!