Tired wipers pushed aside clumps of sleet and rain drops landing on my windshield. My toasty seat heater made it hard to believe the thermometer that bounced between 35 and 39 degrees as I made the two hour trip north from Ithaca to Sodus Bay.
I met the rest of the Surf Rangers at a launch site just east of Chimney Bluffs State Park at 10am. We shivered as we pulled on our extra warm kayaking gear. The only one without a dry suit, I was lucky that Dennis had an extra one. Although it was meant for surfing and looked goofy next to the kayaker dry suits, it fit well and kept me quite warm!
We paddled about a mile east, around the point and towards the entrance to East Bay. Last year when we paddled the same route the point created some interesting interference patterns - with the 6- 7ft waves breaking farther from shore. It was much calmer this time around.
The entrance to East bay was mostly closed (it gets filled in at the end of the season every year), so we beached and portaged over to the bay-side. The wind was much calmer on the bay. We paddled as far as possible through the wetlands - until we reached a bridge blocked off by a beaver dam. At this point we stopped to warm up and have some lunch. It was still drizzling slightly, so some of us huddled under Dave's emergency igloo and snacked on Morgan's delicious cookies to stay warm.
On our way out of the bay we decided to try and shoot through the small opening in the wall. A quick turn into the surf and we were all safe and bobbing out on lake again. The paddle back was enjoyable - it was warming up slightly and the rain had stopped. We continued past our launch site to check out the Bluffs from our boats. Chimney Bluffs is a set of jagged clay cliffs lying on Lake Ontario's southern shore. Over time, rain, wind, and waves have eroded a glacial drumlin (see Wikipedia for a good description) to form the cliffs. As time goes on, they get smaller and smaller.
We walked back along the beach. The pebbles on the beach have been polished and rounded over thousands of years, resulting in a very beautiful mixture of colored stones. Dave and I had a strange urge to sort the beach into different colors...
We all headed to a Heather-recommended Mexican restaurant (El Rincon Mexicano) in Sodus for dinner. The food was spicy but delicious. Jeff, whose specialty is Salsa dancing, taught some of us to dance Salsa! This also happened to be the day the restaurant was celebrating El Dia de los Muertos, so we were entertained by a bunch of dancing children!
Photos of our post-kayaking adventures. Click to enlarge.
Date: November 6th, 2010
Distance: 8 miles
Weather: 37 degrees, a bit drizzly, a bit sunny