A March across Powell, 24

August 24, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

I awake just before dawn and hike back up to the overlook to shoot the sunrise. After the gold washes out of the light, I head back to camp and pack while breakfast is cooking.

I'd like to make 10 miles today and in order to do so I'm going to have to occasionally get out of the boat to loosen up my knee and back. The channel today has a lot of curves and I've noticed there's usually a beachable spot on the down-channel side of them. So, I plan on stopping just before every point-rounding which should come out to be about every 20 to 30 minutes. Hopefully the combination of short paddles and frequent stops will get me 10 miles closer to Bull Frog.

After rounding the second point I encounter two kayakers headed the other way.  We raft up and exchange stories and beta for a few minutes before parting.

Paddling and stopping I continue up the channel to the point at green buoy #87 where I can't find a takeout. So far the plan has been working but cumulatively the sitting is taking its toll and I'm needing to get out of the boat more frequently. In an attempt to prolong the onset of numbness I shift my butt back and forth and tighten my cheeks on every nth paddle stroke in an effort to keep blood flowing to the region. Thankfully, once I round the point I spy a beach on the opposite shore and head for it.

I struggle my way out of the kayak and wander around the beach for a while. As I'm walking and stretching it dawns on me that perhaps my knee issue is due to over extension of the joint. I haven't been using the rudder much and just sit with my legs straight out in front of me. The problem is that my butt is in the seat which is an inch or two above the hull; the heels of my feet are also on the hull but the rest of my leg is unsupported.

Anxious to test my theory and get another few miles behind me I shoehorn myself back into the boat. Once settled, I place my Nalgene water bottle under my knee to support it and hold it up a bit. The bottle isn't quite tall enough so I fold up my paddling jacket and use it as padding between me and the bottle.

The bottle helps, yeah! But the damage is already done and probably won't feel better for a while.

I paddle down to the next point at green buoy #89 (about 10 miles, wahoo I made it), find a fabulous little alcove and call it home for the night.

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