laura paddles delmarva

exploring the shorelines of Delmarva via kayak

George’s Island to Queen’s Sound

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It’s been exactly one year (to the day!) since I completed the first leg of my overall goal.  After today’s leg, I’ve paddled just over 66 miles in 20 hours and 18 minutes.  I’m just about 10% complete (don’t forget the overall goal is to paddle around the entire Delmarva peninsula).  Today I paddled from George’s Island landing in Stockton, MD to Queen’s Sound landing which is along the Chincoteague causeway.  My first border crossing!  And another cool thing – I finished the first leg on June 24 last year at Queens Sound (but I obviously came from the opposite direction this time).  None of these coincidences were planned either.  I just realized as I was looking at my records a few minutes ago.

IMAG1227I drove to George’s Island landing, just east of the tiny town of Stockton.  This landing is probably the most gorgeous landing I’ve seen yet.  I love driving down a back road, usually wooded with a house here and there, and then all of a sudden, the landscape opens up and you’re right on the waterfront.  This landing overlooks Chincoteague Bay, Assateague Island way off in the distance, and a few islands (I’m thinking one of them was George’s Island at one point).  Before I took off, I snapped a few photos at the landing, just because this spot was so… the word enchanting comes to mind, but I feel like a nerd using that word.  But whatever, it was enchanting.  There was a man fishing from the bulkhead that even tried to convince me to buy the house that was right on the water.  Tempting at $200k but probably not the best investment with the increase in strong storms we’ve been seeing.

The first 7 miles of this 8.6-mile trip were lovely.  Even though I was paddling directly into the wind, it was pretty easy.  Much easier than yesterday’s paddle when I was paddling into the wind at an angle the whole time.  I took a quick break on a spit of land near Greenbackville, and another break at the Captain’s Cove development.  Brian was going to pick me up when he was done work so I sent him a text to let him know I’d be at the landing in about an hour and a half.

The last stretch of the paddle was tough.  Not as rough as yesterday’s paddle, but it was definitely not as lovely as the first couple miles of this trip.  I took my time paddling into the wind, careful not to wear myself out.  I was only moving at about 2.5 mph, but I was making headway and feeling pretty good.  It wasn’t until I had about a mile left that I hit a shallow spot.  So shallow that it turned into a mud flat.  Ugh, portage.  It was nice to give my arms a break and use some other muscles, but holy cow, trudging through the mud and dragging my kayak behind me was way more exhausting that paddling against the wind!

I did however get to see some cool stuff in the water.  Lots of crabs (thank goodness for my closed-toe Tevas), anemones, and a terrapin!  Since the water was so shallow and I was not in my kayak, she was easy to spot and easy to grab!  I kept her just long enough to snap a photo and let her continue on her way.  This sort of cheered me up and made me stop bitching at the mud flat for a few minutes.

FINALLY I got into water that was deep enough to paddle again!  The last mile or so was exhausting, but I finally made it under the Chincoteague bridge and completed the paddle at the boat ramp at Queen’s Sound landing.  I wish I had more pictures to share with this post, but somehow I deleted all but one of them.  None of them were life-changing, earth-shattering shots, but it would have been cool to show some of the sights and the terrapin!

Take a look at my path.  If you zoom in enough on the section between the causeway and Captain’s Cove, you’ll see the line is not as smooth.  This is where I had to portage across the mudflat.  Not fun 😦

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