I had a message on my phone from local Two Rivers paddler & coach John Bodwin, inviting me to join him (And a guy who suspiciously looks like Nigel Dennis) for an evening paddling at the Neshotah beach along the big lake. It had been some time since I’d paddled this section of Lake Michigan and after a hot bike ride on the Mariner trail between Two Rivers and Manitowoc, I was more than ready to get on the water! When I arrived the air temps were still in the mid-80s and the lake was as calm as I’ve seen it since we kicked off this trip. What a great way to end the day!
What’s worth mentioning here is that the water temperature was frigid. The storm that rolled through in the early hours of the morning and the change of wind direction brought cold water up from the depth and made the surface to the lake downright frosty. Remember what they say, “Dress for the water!”, so I put on my drytop even though the air temps were a bit toasty. I can’t tell you how it works for all drysuits or tops, but the new Kokatat gear I’ve got does a great job at allowing air to move through the fabric and I don’t have a problem staying comfortable, even on warm days. The trick is a really good, (and thin) rash guard underneath.
We spent just a couple of hours on the water before I had to get back and join the family for dinner. We paddled around the break wall that gave me my first real-world experience in hard landings, fiddled, chatted and went absolutely nowhere.. Don’t be fooled… Some days, NOWHERE is the perfect destination!
Now here’s a confusing side note… Jon Bodwin (the guy on the right, above) bought a brand new Sea Kayaking UK Explorer last year. The guy on the left who shall remain nameless, but who looks amazingly like Nigel Dennis.. (The owner of that very same Sea Kayaking UK) ordered a SKUK Pilgrim some time back. The poor chap is still waiting and wondering if his dream boat will cross the Atlantic before the snow flies. He fears even his emails to SKUK are being lost somewhere out to sea… Everyone who owns a Brit-boat knows; The waiting, (As Tom Petty once said) is the hardest part! On the other hand, there’s no need waiting any longer than we have to either. So, let’s all take a moment to meditate and send some psychic messages across the sea to SKUK and the real Nigel Dennis. Ommmmm… After all, no one who looks so much like the big guy himself should lose the faith.. It might cause some matter/antimatter explosion resulting in a tear in the universe! You wouldn’t want that would you? Well, would you!?!?! 😉