June 24, 2007

Bayfield & Apostle Islands

Had a great weekend with my Sister-in-Law, Lisa and her husband Dick on their newly remodled 38' boat down at Bayfield Marina. Dick has just recently replaced all the countertops & carpets, dressing up the already beautiful ship!

Dick remained on board Saturday putting the finishing touches on the new carpet for their master stateroom, and Lisa & I took off down the Lake Superior shoreline to the East. It was Lisa's first time kayaking, but she handled the Seda Swift like an experienced pro, slicing though the chop, and wind with no problems.

The shoreline was interesting, going from a rather flat beach area to high cliffs dotted with magnificent homes built way up top. Most had some type of stairway down to the water, for access to the blue-clear waters of the lake.

Our 5 mile paddle took us to a small public beach bordered on one side by the Onion River. We attempted to travel up the river, but the water depth quickly came up to only a few inches. I was surprised at how cold the spring fed water was when I stepped out to turn the kayak around!

With the now stiff winds at our backs, we surfed the kayaks back to the Marina in half the time of the paddle out, ending a perfect day on the water!

The evening was topped off by a "Latitudes & Attitudes" party complete with great food and drink, and a Jimmy Buffet style band.

That evening we met Tana, one of Lisa's friends who also has a beautiful new 35 footer at the docks. She is a fellow kayaker and agreed to lead Lisa & I on a Sunday morning paddle to the caves near Meyers Beach. We were greeted by a park Ranger at the beach, who reminded us of the 41 degree Lake water temperature, and that a 52 year old fellow had died Friday of hypothermia after capsizing in a trailing wind. The shoreline to the East of the Beach for about 3 miles has sandstone caves that have been cut into the cliffs by years of pounding seas.

We spent a couple of hours paddling down the cliffs, darting in & out of the caves, many of which went back into the rock and out again a few hundred yards away. Inside was a bit spooky, very dark, with loud, low pitched rumbles of the waves hitting the back walls of the structures.

Many thanks to Tana for being such a good host and guide, and showing us one of the Apostle Island Treasures!

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