May 5, 2013

John Christie: It's that first paddle on the Penobscot

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Columnist John Christie marks the coming of spring with the first of what will be many kayaking adventures on Penobscot Bay, although he may get in one more day of skiing on Mount Washington.

Bob Lane photo

Some spray over the deck, and the roll of the kayak as the swells built out around the lighthouse, reawakened the dormant sensations that conspire to make ocean kayaking the enjoyable and stimulating experience that it never fails, at least for me, to be.

Turning back south at the light, we rode the rollers back down along the leeward side of Monroe Island as we felt that testing the ocean side of the island could wait for a subsequent visit. As we paddled by the interesting and variegated western shore of the island I was reminded of a trip long ago in the lobster boat as Marty and I were headed home to our mooring in Rockport after a couple of days exploring the Port Clyde peninsula and a beautiful morning motoring up Muscle Ridge, when we watched in fascination as a large doe swam effortlessly toward the island from the mainland.

Staying inside of Sheep Island, and making the mental note to return once again to the sheltered, sunset-facing beach on its westerly shore before the summer's over, we crossed over Sheep Island Bar and took a bearing to Hendrickson Point before scooting back up past Holiday Beach -- quiet on this chilly April day -- and then home to our launch spot in the harbor.

Not an especially long and exhausting paddle. Just the perfect start to a summer of pleasure on the water.

John Christie is an author and year-round Maine explorer. He and his son, Josh, write in Outdoors about places to enjoy the beauty only Maine has to offer. He can be contacted at:


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