Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Geiger Key Kayaking by Isaac

We were camping in the Florida Keys in Gieger Key RV Park & Marina, which happened to have a kayak rental place. We naturally wanted to go kayaking. When we tried to do it, however, the rental guy informed us that the conditions were rough and we'd probably have a better time if we went next morning. We came next morning with Peeka so that she could get some exercise before we left. The rental guy started outfitting us and Dad took Peeka back to the van. She desperately wanted to come, however, and her argument was very convincing. She kept jumping out of the van naked, (Our term for when she doesn't have a collar or harness on) and running towards the kayaks. Finally, Dad put her harness on her and brought her with. So we launched our kayaks, with Peeka in Dad and I's kayak. At first, Peeka was unsure about being on a small plastic shell, but, once she knew the family was together, she was the happiest kayaking dog I know. We kayaked to the lee side of a mangrove island and then crossed a windy straight. We made it to the other side and glided into a dark mangrove channel. We glided slowly, silently down the mangrove passage, and the only time we paddled was to make course corrections. I am unhappy to say we saw no alligators or crocodiles. We emerged from the passage into a bay, were we saw that it continued to the right of were we had come out. We paddled that way, in to the wind, and passed some mangroves that sat at the mouth of a protected bay. We wandered around in the mangroves for a while when we emerged on to a straight, which was even windier than the first. We saw a kayak tour disappear into a mangrove channel, so we went up the straight a little, hugging the island, until we came to a point were we thought would account for wind drift as we crossed the straight. So across the straight we went, and as we were up above the channel we let the wind blow us. Then, we had the brilliant idea of holding our paddles out to sail and we went considerably faster. When we reached the channel, we paddled through, and made our way back to Gieger Key. We observed a seaslug on the seawall, and then went back through the pretty passage and back to the kayak rental place to give our kayaks back.

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