Showing posts with label kayak. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kayak. Show all posts

Monday, August 11, 2014

Seashells and Lighthouses as Summer Wanes

It is mid-August and summer in the U.S is slipping away.  I always feel a melancholy as my birthday approaches in the beginning of September.  Not so much because it means another year has passed and I’m growing older, which is true too, but because my birthday marks the ending of swimming, vacations, and barefoot days at the beach floating in the waves.

I love all of the seasons and spend time outdoors no matter the season. But there is something a bit sad as summer begins to fade away.  There is a feeling of freedom associated with not having to bundle up before going outdoors.  A feeling of abundant life as the insects, birds, and animals move around you.

In celebration of summer, I want to introduce you to Mary Beth Granger’s Lighthouse blog. In her most recent entry, she takes us on a tour of the Hereford Inlet on Jersey Shore.  Thank you Mary Beth for sharing this historical and beautiful building and grounds with us.  I swear I can smell the sweet scent of the flowers and the tangy salt of the ocean.

As summer comes to a slow close, I am squeezing in as much time as possible loading my kayak onto my Jeep and heading out to the tributary rivers of Maryland to kayak.  There is one area with a small lighthouse in the water. The osprey and other water birds are very active in that area and I watch as I float around. I can think of no better way to pass the last days of summer.

 Image Credit: ©Dawn Rae – All Rights Reserved











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Monday, June 30, 2014

Full Circles in a Kayak

It is funny, isn’t it, how things tend to come full circle?  Rather, not quite full circle, but a spiral, gently sloped upwards, returning to almost the same spot but one step better. One step forward in the adventure of living.

I have often thought that the act of living is represented in this spiral. You are either moving forward or backward in this spiral, but you are moving.  There are still the ups and downs, but you are moving. At this point in my life, I am moving up with little bits of synchronicity happening along the way.

I experienced this in full effect yesterday.

I went on my second adventure with my new kayak.  While unloading at the launch area, a wonderfully knowledgeable gentleman gave me some very good tips about paddling and about equipment.  He recommended lessons and recommended that I check out Shank’s Mare, in Pennsylvania, along with a few local places.

“Shank’s Mare” is a phrase I haven’t heard since my childhood, growing up in Northern Indiana – when I had many Amish friends. When asked how they were getting somewhere, they often replied “Shank’s Mare”; which meant they were walking.

Imagine my surprise hearing this Indiana phrase here just a few minutes outside of the city of Baltimore. 

This gentleman was referring to Shank’s Mare Outfitters.  He highly recommended that I check it out.  You can bet that I found it on the internet as soon as I returned home, and will indeed go up there and see what it’s all about.  Turns out that it is a lovely 1890’s era general store turned meeting place for hikers, kayakers, and cross-country skiers.  It is located between York and Lancaster Pennsylvania, in Wrightsville, PA on the banks of the Susquehanna River.

As we stood talking, the gentleman gave me stern information about kayak safety; wear a floatation device, be lit at night, take care with the weather, and so on.  Very similar warnings that I had just read the night before in How to Kill Yourself in a Kayak by magicman007.

Upon our return home, after my hours spent paddling around the back side of Gun Powder falls park – the free section near Hammerman Beach area – a young lady approached us in the parking lot.

Her company is relocating her to the area, and she’s trying to find a suitable apartment near areas suitable for water sports, specifically kayaking. She wanted to know what we thought of this apartment complex and where did we go kayaking? Somewhere close? Yours truly went from someone who often explores the area solo to a personal tour guide to a young lady from Ohio.  I drove her past a few areas, including through the Hammerman Beach area.  Her excitement was palpable and she occasionally clapped her hands quietly, when turning corners and seeing the water views.  She took off her flip-flops and stood in the wet sand while we talked about the area in general.

If she teared up, like this Midwest girl did when deciding to live here, I didn’t see it. I was too much in awe of the coincidence of the Ohio girl driving past the Indiana-turned-mid-Atlantic girl at the exact moment we were unloading the kayak.  And how lucky I was to show one of these mid-Atlantic gems to someone in person.

I hope she enjoys the mid-Atlantic region as much as I do. 







Image Credit: Images are mine ©Dawn Rae – All Rights Reserved (Click on photo for larger view)



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