Saturday, February 12, 2011

What else is there to do besides go fishing?

sea kayaking Red Lake, Ontario
Fishing on Red Lake, Ontario is so good that it is easy to forget that not everybody in the world comes here to fish or at least do it full-time.

Often men have wives, sons or daughters who are partially interested in fishing but would like some other adventures as well.

About a mile from camp is the West Red Lake Mining Museum, a log cabin that once was once part of our camp.

There are a few trails to walk, mostly to other lakes, a couple of old gold mines to look for rocks at, swimming off the main dock and beaches (if the water isn't high) in July and August, and gorgeous scenery and wildlife to see all over the place, but it is a real shame to come to this land that literally has more water than land and not explore it by water!

The very best way to do this is by sea kayak or canoe and the camp has several of these to loan to adventurers.

Many people have never tried a sea kayak and for some reason have the belief they tip easily. That is incorrect. Sea kayaks are more stable than a canoe and once seated in one it is very difficult to upset. You would need to try and tip it. We can instruct you on how to use a kayak and with probably only an hour's practice you will have the knack for it and can start exploring.

We insist that everyone using a canoe or kayak wear their life jacket and we have some special ones just for kayaking. If somehow you do manage to upset the kayak, it will be floating right beside you. Just push it to shore, dump out the water and get back in. Ditto for a canoe.

Incidentally, sea kayaks are not the same as the river kayaks you have seen people shooting white water with. These are long vessels that are meant for paddling long distances. They move along at twice the speed of a canoe, partially because of their double paddles but also because they are so streamlined and sit so low in the water that wind barely affects them.

The really neat thing about kayaks or canoes is that you can sneak silently along the shore and up creeks that are far too shallow for a boat. They draft only a couple inches of water.

This is especially fun to do in the evenings because these are locations where you are most apt to see moose, shore birds and other animals including the aquatic ones like beaver, muskrat, mink and otter.

Sea kayaks have water-proof holds in the front and back where you can store extra clothing or a lunch. What a great adventure it is to paddle to a destination like a waterfall or old mine, walk a trail or two, eat lunch and then work your way back to camp.

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