Thursday, December 23, 2010

Day trip in 15 degrees cold

Finally we managed to meet, all three paddling companions. We had arranged a “meeting” – that is a paddle trip where we get the opportunity to discuss matters of our long distance trip.
I had suggested Håøya, an island in the inner Oslo fjord. Håøya is a good destination for a short day trip, you can paddle 20-30 kilometers around the main Island, and visit several smaller islands on the way.  
When I started packing the car this morning, the thermometer showed 20 degrees below zero. I really like to paddle in cold weather; the only drawback is all the packing in and out of the car, and packing kayaks on the car roof with frozen fingers.
At our launching place, the water was frozen, so we needed to drive a little extra, to find open water for kayak launch.

The frost mist was blowing across the water, and the sun rose, as we finally found ourselves seated in our kayaks on the water. It was spectacular – immediately worth all our efforts.
We paddled for 3-4 hours, didn’t land but had some small breaks seated in the kayaks. On the way we discussed issues of safety, preparations to be fit for the trip, and equipment. Tor had made a sea anchor that we tested. I had for the first time my new anorak – it felt really good. Thanks Anne for your kind help! Quoc brought up the subject that a large outdoor equipment business was willing to sponsor our trip. When I heard that they also perhaps wanted to sponsor us with freeze dried food, I really became interested! Food is actually the only major expense in this project. We already have all the equipment we need and more…  

My fingertips are still a bit cold, as I write these words. It was a great trip – really worth the effort. On my way home (1 hour drive), I saw 4 car crashes – only minor accidents. People were driving like madmen. You could really feel the stress on this last shopping day before Christmas. I felt privileged that I had the opportunity to spend my day on the sea instead.
Happy christmas everyone!

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