Thursday, December 5, 2013

Doryman's Kayak on Drift Creek

You've heard me speak of Drift Creek before. The last six miles of this coastal creek are tidal, which this time of year means exploration as high into the forest as a boat can go. The tide yesterday was a whopping twelve foot drop, so a few die-hard mariners ventured up stream at mid-day.

From the start, it was apparent we had missed the incoming tide. Perhaps the winter rain run-off had canceled the incoming current, because we paddled for two hours in what was, to all appearances, still water.

But when the tide turned it was a different story. We were still headed upstream, looking for a beautiful waterfall we had seen earlier in the year, though the rush of water headed out to sea had a different agenda. About five miles up the creek, we turned around and by the time we arrived back at the mouth of Drift Creek, where it empties into the Alsea River, the water level had dropped three feet and was running at two knots.

Despite the freezing weather - or perhaps because of it - the water and the forest had a beckoning beauty and incredible stillness. With no wind, it was completely silent. One could sit still and hear absolutely nothing. Such a feeling of sensory deprivation is both eerie and wonderful.

It was a perfect day to try out the brand new Doryman kayak. I'm no kayaker yet, so will need to practice more to give a full report of her capabilities.
She sure looked pretty.

This kayak could be called a freighter. She is beamy and voluminous. There was little chance she would perform as well as Curt's bright yellow sea kayak. But (sorry Curt) she has more class, more narrative.

Here's a shot of Curt behind me. I must have turned around sooner.

All agreed this was a wonderful winter day on the water, despite the frosty conditions.

Thanks to Shalline for photos of the Doryman Kayak.

Chuck and Shalline's new canoe is a Loon 16. It's built of hand-laid fiberglass with wood inlays inside. A high performance vessel, no doubt.

As always, the most enthusiastic mariner was Lucy the Dog, with Jim in Lazy Duck. I want to show you her most prominent position. Please note the tail. It never stops. I envy her happy enthusiasm.

Lucy the Dog from doryman on Vimeo.

For pictures of the kayak build, please visit Doryman's Flickr site.

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