Hello in the land of bewilderment and longing to paddle once again.
Photo credit Peter Istvan Photography
You can now park and pay as a transient paddler at the marinas down at Snug Harbour and Dillon Cove and I assume elsewhere. If you try using the ratepayer lot – just know it’s a $75 fine, which has a way of putting a damper on your excellent adventure. Groups of 10 or less are allowed, with physical distancing. My suggestion is to eat beans and you will not have to worry much – think of that pivotal, proctal scene in ‘Blazing Saddles’. The islands are pristine from a long winter’s nap, but are bone dry. Don’t even think about a campfire as you will sadly be a featured actor in ‘Blazing Islands’ with a lot of time on your hands in a cramped, not-physically-distant Correctional Centre. Hot tip – when out paddling, apart from slathering the zinc on to stop immediate sunburn, try using a ‘Buff’ or some other covering on your face and neck. My buddy Mark did that on our recent trip to the McCoys and it saved his face – while mine peeled like an onion. There are more of signs of bear and deer and all sorts of other wildlife that have been partying in our absence and quite happy to have the islands to themselves. Be careful with your food – and oh yes – the Bay is at a record high level with attendant shifts in water levels at the whim of the wind. Pull your boat well up and tie her down, cause you never know when the gales of November come early.
White Squall Outdoor Store in downtown Parry Hoot
We’re open and want to welcome you back with a shiny floor and lots of summer clothing and paddling gear to show off. Please wear a mask and be ready to wait as we are welcoming one person in at a time – our little shop just isn’t built for arrows painted on aisles and never will be 🙂 Hours are 9:30 – 4pm Mon to Sat and you can call 705-746-4936 or [email protected]
Kayaks, Canoes and SUP’s
We’re still selling used and new gear and boats by appointment here in Carling Township – kind of like farmers that can’t stop farming. We have a boatload more new Deltas kayaks coming soon. Also brought in new Bluwave Sups and the lightest, strongest canoes we can find from H20. See the whole shootin’ match at:
You may wonder what we’re doing – I often do. We are for sure closed for good so the Paddling Centre is no more in that sense and we ask you don’t come and wander about. But we still strive to help folks get out paddling – it’s just on our terms, which means making an appointment. Seems to work. Contact us at [email protected]
Are We Renting!
Good question. Very little as rentals are seriously limited to mostly tandem touring kayaks. We have no rental canoes left and only a handful of SUPs. Would need to shuttle tandems to your put-in for a shuttle charge instead of pickup here. We apologize if this is a mere shadow of the way things were, but that’s the way she rolls. Still interested? Talk to us at: [email protected] and we’ll sort out if we can help. No promises off the bat, but will give it our best thoughts and if we can, we will!
A Georgian Bay Treasure
Diamond Key Lodge (www.diamondkeylodge.com) is about the most awesome place we know of on the Bay. Up at the mouth of the Key River it offers spectacular coastal and island kayaking with the Bustard Islands beckoning to the west. Not a catered lodge at all, you do your own thing – so if you are looking to stay close to home this summer, check it out. We have spent many a memorable night out there thanks to owners Peter and Karen Turkstra who have done everything to offer an exceptional and unique Bay getaway.
Lighthouses, Hearts, Stones
A part of our history, but like lots of things, gets forgotten – like last summer’s socks under the bed. Take time if you can, brew a coffee and sit back to watch Sean Tamblyn’s talented talk and photo journey up the Bay chronicling the major lights built so long ago. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_A11cNcCpU ) His respect and knowledge come shining through and it’s thanks to the Georgian Bay Land Trust for their efforts and Sean’s to bring this to us. Sean’s photography is world class and can be seen at: http://www.heartofstonephoto.com/
‘Heart of Stone’ refers to Bay pines blown down by the westerly gales, and as they keel over – often reveal a stone in the heart of their roots and earth. I was just out on southwest Big McCoy and sure enough – there was a big pine uprooted with a rounded glacial stone nestled in its tangle of soil and roots. Probably lying hidden for half a century or more – I wonder what it thinks to suddenly be thrust into the light!. It might wish it was back underneath, safe and sound.
You can’t go wrong with your best friend ie –boat, than taking it to Johnny’s Boat Shop in Huntsville: https://johnnysboatshop.com/ We have the utmost respect for his honesty, talent and ability to fix almost anything when it comes to canoes, kayaks and sups. If your drysuit or other paddling gear needs a tuneup – the same goes for Jamie at: http://www.paddlesportsrepairs.com/ Fast, reasonable and damn good. Just like our 2004 Volvo wagon.
Seems I’ve already used up my tips further back in this hoot. I’ll simply end by saying that if you can find a reference here to a Canadian musical icon, let us know and we’ll put your name in for a draw to win one of 3 pairs of Smartwool or Darn Tough socks. Count yerself lucky like the Lone Ranger with a silver bullet if you win!. Be kind, don’t be a covid bonehead and may the bluebird of happiness fly up your nose at least once a week. love, tim
Had enough? I know I have. But if you really want off this Squall Train of Consciousness – just reply with ‘Derail Me Dyer” in the subject line and we’ll make sure you are no longer on the ride with us …