Friday, April 2, 2010

Tandem Paddling on the Eno River

4/2/2010 - Eno River, Durham, NC

Good Friday turned out to be "great" Friday for me! ;-) My boss gave me a half day off... and with my wife Rachel off from work until next Wednesday... we decided to do a little paddling and get into better shape for the Yee Haw! River Paddle that will be held on April 10th. Friday was a gorgeous day - sunny, with temperatures in the mid 80's. Yee Haw!

Put in was at the Eno River boat ramp off of Red Mill Road. Parking lot was pretty full. It looked like many other boaters and fishermen had the day off too!
It was exciting to see fellow paddlers at the put in area.

I had the pleasure to meet Banks Dixon, a Durham river guide who was featured in the March 2010 issue of Our State magazine. He is a real pleasant fellow... and I had a chance to ask him why on page 110 of Our State magazine there is a picture of him paddling a canoe without a PFD! He laughed and told me he wondered when someone would ask him about that "little" oversight! Turns out, the Our State photographer wanted photos of Banks paddling the red canoe, but did not like the color of his PFD because it "clashed" with the other colors in the frame! Artistic license over safety?

Anyway, Banks owns and operates Frog Hollow Outdoors, a local provision company for paddling. The folks in the earlier photo at the put in area were renting some of Banks canoes. I gave Banks one of my Durhamblogger cards and told him to look me up here! Hope to see him on the water again.

And yes... my wife Rachel occupied the front seat on this paddling adventure! It was great to have her along again... but we need to work some on our "paddling rhythm!" Our paddles hit a few times and we suffered through a few missed strokes... but it is all good! :-)

The nicer weather also brought out the fishermen in abundance. At least four fishing boats passed us... and thankfully "most" know to slow down to reduce their wakes before over taking and passing smaller water craft like kayaks. There was one knucklehead who did not slow down... but we paddled directly into the wake and stayed upright through the swells.

We also saw approximately six turtles at various points along our route. This fellow was one of the larger ones.

There were several groups of folks fishing from the river banks. We had to give their lines a wide berth while keeping eyes and ears peeled for any approaching motor boats. Again, a busy day on the Eno River!

Nice silhouette shot of a bare tree against the vivid blue sky.

A peaceful bend on the river.

Interesting sandy "beach" along a small tributary we followed off the main channel of the Eno River.

Met a group of fellow "yakers" who had put in at Penny's Bend and were paddling in the opposite direction of us... back to the Eno River boat ramp.

I want to try the Penny's Bend to Eno River boat ramp route one day soon.
It was a wonderful and special paddling adventure today... made all the more better to be able to share it with Rachel!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Mike:
    Banks here. I like the blog. Thanks for being gentle on me regarding my lack of PFD in Our State ;-) As i mentioned to you when we spoke, i had originally been hired just to be the anonymous paddler photo model, and was then contacted a couple weeks after that photo shoot about being interviewed for the article (still doesn't make it OK that im not wearing my PFD...that may actually make it worse). I abandoned my strong belief of PFDs-don't-do-what-they-need-to-if-you-don't-wear-them, for stylistic desires of a photo editor...shame on me ;-) I won't let it happen again. All that said, I think Our State is an amazing magazine and I was truly flattered by the article, and anyone reading this - ALWAYS wear your PFD when paddling! If you'd like to see me properly PFDd ;-) check out the Our State Web Exclusive Video -
    Thanks Mike. It was nice meeting you, hope to see you at the river again soon.


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