We went Stand Up Paddle Boarding in Venice today. The shoreline is muddy and lined with Oysters so to get into the water without damaging the boards it was necessary to improvise. An old dingy tied to the dock did double duty as an impromptu floating dock. We used it to slip into the water without scraping the boards or getting stuck in the mud.
It took Peter all of 5 minutes before he was standing up and paddling down the creek toward the Intracoastal. Of course, I had to stand up and paddle after him. We had ideal conditions, low wind and we were with the current. I decided in the event of a boat wake I would just kneel on the board and paddle into the waves. I was hoping to hang in and not fall off!! Since it was early Sunday morning where was not a lot of boat traffic. Of course as we came to the end of the creek and the beginning of the Intracoastal a boat flew by. The knees on board plan was a lifesaver, or shall I say hat saver. I did not fall off and I did not get my hat wet!
Once on the intracoastal we crossed over and headed North with hopes of finding a way to get over to the gulf. We paddled in and out of small lagoons and around mangrove islands until we met up with a group of fishermen. I asked them if they knew of a good way to the Gulf and in fact they were able to direct us to a hidden location to portage over without climbing or cutting a trail through the tropical forest. I was first to beach and slip through a grove of Sea Grapes. It was just about 50 steps from there up a small hill and then down another small hill and directly into the Gulf! WOW! This is exactly what we were hoping to find. What luck!
The East wind created perfect conditions for paddling on the Gulf. We headed North up to a big, bright umbrella on the beach, we turned and went back to our starting point then South a bit then back to the Umbrella. It was a beautiful day with little wind and the Gulf was smooth as glass. Then I happened to notice the man under the umbrella, he was NUDE! OMG a Nude beach! Kinda gross, but oh well, to each their own . . .
We paddled back near our secret passage, put the boards on shore and had a swim before portaging back over to the lagoon and the dock. As we entered the trail we met a man hacking at the vegetation, of all things he asked us if we happened to have a Hatchet with us?! Oh, yea, a Hatchet is just this thing to bring on a Paddle Board Adventure! He had a dirt bike and was riding the trail but it had become overgrown over the summer.
Back on the lagoon as we neared the Instracoastal two boats went by. This time we were able to maneuver the wake without kneeling on the boards! We returned to the dock and if you can believe it, we had not fallen off once. It was FUN! It was BEAUTIFUL! All you see out there is trees and mangroves. The next time we go I will bring my camera and take photo’s of the birds, nests, fish jumping and anything else I am able to snap while paddling. Once we returned to the dock Peter took the photo’s I am posting here today.
HI Nanc:) Looks like the perfect day and tons of FUN!
Wish you were there!