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Day 2: The Open Water

9:30a we departed Cypress headed to Sucia Island. Fifteen minutes in Ryan made the statement that would ultimately ruin us, “Wow, this is almost effortless” he said.  Out of the channel we did what seemed logical and headed to a shipping lane. We didn’t realize the tide was at maximum ebb just as we were entering the channel. This lovely little fact of nature most paddlers know about had my trusty ship mate and me laboring at the oars for 45 loooong minutes. “Effortless” indeed….but, I enjoy exercise and the beauty of the surrounding vistas had me in “the zone”…except this pesky little buoy traveling beside us kept distracting me…I kept wondering how it had broken loose of its moorings and was just floating out in no-man’s land. The views were amazing nonetheless.

It didn’t feel like we were getting along as well as we would like to, so we decided to abort our heading and point ourselves in another direction. Freed from the ebb we began to make progress. It felt GOOD. We started seeing things differently…our depth perception was changing… that’s when we realized the buoy was in fact stationary….it was anchored securely in place and we had been laboring in vain.  And we had only sore muscles, sunburn, and an increased heart rate to show for it.

That was fun….or NOT. And not close to even sniffing the worst of it.

And around 10:45a we got caught in a bit of a scary situation with waves coming over the kayak and us working our center of gravity lower and lower for fear of tipping. The boat seemed to be losing buoyancy…. right along with our confidence. We pushed through for an hour plus….the whole time wondering when we were going to tip over and lose all our gear and have to swim for it. We were close to exhaustion and discouragement when a current next to the island actually began to help us. We made it to a small island around 2p so hungry we could hardly get our brains to reason. Ryan was hallucinating about eating fresh baked bread from some mysterious oven, and I was singing praises to the inventor of squeeze peanut butter and squeeze jelly…That inventor is now in my will by the way.  Oreo’s with a trail mix chaser never tasted so good!

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