BAM!! , & like that He was there !! Seans’ back to writing!!!!
This past Saturday (10/09/10) I got a chance to paddle with Peggy, KayakKev, & a paddler named Steve Z – (insert long Polish name). He paddles a Nigel Dennis Explorer & is a very nice fellow and knowledgeable paddler. Jeff was supposed to join us, but instead got caught up in teaching a class for Russell back at Sweetwater Kayaks. SORRY Jeffie!
So we met at Anclote River Park off Baillies Bluff Road, in Holiday off U.S. 19 on the Pinellas/Pasco County lines around 9:00 a.m. The park is located at the mouth of the Anclote River & next to the power plant. The morning was crisp & cool, with little humidity. We unloaded our gear & packed it into our kayaks for our 4 1/2 mile paddle across Anclote Sound and to the northern tip of Anclote Key.
As we started the crossing to the north tip of the key, the water was extremely calm; smooth like new fiberglass on a kayak! There was very little wind if any and pretty uneventful all the way to Anclote Key. Although the water was SOOO clear in many places you could see in GREAT DETAIL the contours of the bottom 12-15 feet below. Also saw a few large Sting Rays!– GO RAYS!!!!— sorry had to throw it in. Also on the crossing we saw many birds Cormorants, Anhingas, Skimmers, Terns, Pelicans.
We stopped at the north end for a quick dip to cool off and then headed down the Gulf side of the key- south- to find a place for lunch. Steve directed us towards a stand of Palm trees and we enjoyed homemade Cuban Sandwiches & Pica Dillo courtesy of Shelly, my wife. Lunch was AWESOME & very enjoyable in the shade of the palms with the Sea Breeze starting to kick up. Great Food, Great People.
We packed up lunch and continued south down the island towards the southern tip and our turn back to the east for another 4 1/2 to 5 mile crossing back to the mouth of the Anclote River & our vehicles back at the park. The water on the Gulf side was alot of FUN- because we had swells, some small surfable waves(2 feet), and confused chop with a slight current and beam winds. We got to play in some changing conditions!!
We took another small break at the south tip, before heading towards the river mouth in the distance to the east. We had following swells of 1-2 feet (caused by the afternoon seabreeze) all the way across and it really helped take some of the work out of our homeward bound paddling course to the east. Once again the water was absolutely beautiful with a green tint and the sunlights rays bouncing underneath the surface. It was not clear enough though to find Kevins’ VHF radio, which fell out of my PFD pocket- NOTE: TIE THINGS TO YO ‘SELF! THANK YOU STEVE FOR LOOKING FOR IT WITH MASK WHILE SWIMMING AROUND FOR 10 MINS. Kevin- Looks like someone is getting a new VHF radio for Christmas! Remember the Sea Giveth(mostly), But somedays it taketh away. ( just glad it was a radio & not one of US!!)
So the rest of the paddle was about 10 minutes more through the mouth of the Anclote River, dodging power boat traffic crossing the channel and gliding up onto the beach at the park. All told we did about 13 1/2 miles, not a bad days paddle. Better than a GOOD DAY AT WORK!!!!
THANK YOU KAYAKKEV, PEGGY, & STEVE FOR A WONDERFUL DAY!!
Back from a Writers’ Slump, Sea Turtle Sean