Adventure Location: City of Aransas Pass Channel, Texas
The wind was strong but the Yakking Team was determined. The Truck got us to Light House Lakes Park in good shape. The local palm trees were not having very much fun in the wind.
But the OFM Yakking Team knew they could handle the wind. So the preparations went right on along. Flats boots were installed on the OFM’s feet. That is so any mud we encounter will not be able to get the shoes off his feet. His boots are all black but built like this one.
The Yak was dragged down to the water. The seat was installed. Drinking water placed onboard. Even the paddle was remembered. At the last moment the OFM finally remembered his PFD. And then he suddenly remembered to install his eyeglasses holders to keep his glasses on his head when he falls in (again). Now we are ready to get going.
Well the launch was not eventful thank goodness. The 20+ wind was a bit of a trouble with the bow of the Yak. The balance of the Yak was not just right and the bow was slightly lifted out of the water. This made the yak wind sensitive. Being the careful type of wimp, the OFM paddled back and forth near the bank in the shallow water for some time. It seems he needed to practice with this new boat to get a feel for how it handles.
After a good bit of practice he decided we would try out in the deeper water and see how the Yak handles the little 18” waves the wind was making for us to play in. The Yak was doing fine heading into the wind and waves. Then the OFM noticed that the bank was going past us at a bit more than a hunnert miles an hour as we headed down the channel to the Gulf of Mexico. WHOA THERE. What is going on?????
So the OFM turned the Yak around and started paddling back to where we launched. By watching the shoreline he could tell we were now only going out to sea at 97 mph backwards. Then it finally caused a thought to hit him in the head. The tide is rushing out faster than the Yak can go. YIKES.
Actually the OFM knows his way around boats so this was not a major trouble. We performed what is called a “ferry” across current until we were back in the shallow water where the current was negligible. Of course we were a ¼ mile downstream from the launch point. The paddle back was not difficult since the wind was at our back.
The very choppy water was being caused by the strong wind blowing one direction and the strong current running almost exactly opposite of the wind. That makes for nasty boating.
When we made the launch point again it was time to quit this silly show. After everything was loaded back in to the Truck, we watched some folks in larger yaks cross the channel back to the park. They basically had to ferry across to the shallow water as they went out to sea and paddle back toward their launch point also. In reality there was no real danger if you knew what you were doing. The good news is that the Yak proved to be capable of handling much nastier water than the OFM is comfortable paddling in.
Paddling in nicer water is a good way of trying to have tooooo much fun. TheOFM.