27 May 2008

Weekend on the Water

When CAT moved up here and I saw he had a kayak, we began to make plans for a summer spent in tents and on the water. After all, four years ago I went to the local sporting goods store and found a blow up "kayak". Thinking it was a great deal, I bought it (And for the past four years it has sat in the closet).. But last week I blew it up and we hit Vancouver Lake (it's so nice to have a lake 3 miles from home!)..

It was an adventure, made even more so when CAT decided to try to stand up in his kayak. I'd no sooner told him he was going to fall in, then he went head first into the lake. After that he had a heck of a time getting the water out so we could continue on our way. (This time with him actually wearing his life jacket)

The blow up "kayak" may have been a good deal, and would be great to just get out and float around on, but it wasn't the easiest thing to paddle. After only a mile we turned around and headed back, this time with CAT in the blow up so I could "see what a real kayak was like."

We ended the day knowing two things, that I really wanted to go again and that I would definitely need to buy a kayak.

Luckily I found the perfect one, and it was on SALE! Saturday we loaded up our stuff, made a lunch, and set out to enjoy the lovely NW weather. We dropped CAT's truck off up at the dock in Ridgefield, WA and got in the water on the south side of Vancouver Lake. It was a fabulous trip, 11.4 miles of peaceful paddling. It was the perfect way to spend the day.

However, I did have a miserable time afterwards. Somehow, my not so brilliant self decided that I needed to get some sun and that I could wait to put on sunscreen until mid-trip. That in itself was a dumb move. But, even dumber, when I got home and got in the shower to wash the lake funk off me, I saw how burnt I was and thought to myself, "Self, this is gonna hurt so much worse tomorrow so I better shave my legs today." Definitely the stupidest thing I've done in at least a month!! The following day I couldn't even get off the couch, it hurt so bad to move my legs.

Still, on Monday we loaded up again and headed up to Lake Merwin, this time taking our fishing gear.. We caught several small fish, including a couple very small rainbow trout, but had just about given up on catching anything of size when CAT reeled in a nice sized fish..

We were wishing we could have caught more, but when we got back to the dock we found out his fish wasn't really something we wanted.. Another group who had been out fishing informed us that for the most part we had been catching Northern Pikeminnow, a fish related to carp and not good eating. And we found out that it's best to kill these fish when you catch them since they eat the trout and salmon eggs along with the small fish.. Good to know since we'd been feeling bad about not being able to get a few hooks out of the ones we caught..

All in all it was a wonderful weekend. One that we will repeat throughout the summer, and someday we will set off on our grand adventure and ultimate goal, a 5 to 6 day trip down the Columbia River to the ocean!!