Aug 15, 2010

Woodard Bay - Puget Sound: Olympia, WA 08/13/10

I flew up to Olympia from the desert, and I headed out to Boston Harbor for little paddle out on Puget Sound. I made a reservation a couple days before for the Eddyline Fathom kayak, by calling the number on the Boston Harbor Marina website. I got to the marina a little before they opened at 8:00 am, and did a full day boat rental.

My plans were to paddle NE out of Boston Harbor and ride the tide out of Dana Passage to Henderson Inlet then paddle into Henderson to Woodard Bay. I timed the tides just right, as high tide was at 8:30 am, just as I was heading out. And then I killed enough time in Woodard Bay to let the tide ebb, and then slack reverse to push me back to Boston Harbor. Low tide was about 2:45, which means I had plenty of time to take it all in at Woodard Bay.

My first stop on my way out was Fishtrap Loop, as I wanted to hit this up before the bay emptied. The water out at in Dana Passage was calm, when I left, but this little cove in Fishtrap was even more peaceful.

I continued on with my journey, and Dana Passage was in full on flood mode, and aided me as it pushed me out. The rip tides were actually pretty mellow; double bonus.

Once I approached Henderson Inlet, the temp change was creating rather breezy conditions. No worries though, as breeze actually worked for me; itt pushed me into the inlet which had tide I was slightly bucking against. The chop in the water built up a bit, but the Eddyline Fathom, took it very well.

As I approached the long train pier used to bring logs out to the ships back in the day, I could see plenty of seals sunning themselves on the log booms. I tried to keep my distance, so I wouldn't disturb 'em.

I really took my time getting to the facilities of the Woodard Bay Natural Resource Conservation Area. Here is Wikipedia description of the area: Woodard Bay Natural Resource Conservation Area.

I ate lunch napped for a little bit on the bench of the picnic table located on the Chapman Bay side (northern bay of the conservation area). This was very peaceful, and necessary as I was exhausted from a very late night flight into Washington from Arizona, and I wanted to kill some time, as I waited for the tide to change.

Rested and fed, I jumped back into the boat and headed around the spit of land, where the massive train trestle crossing over Woodard Bay came into view. I picked my line and stuck to it as paddled my boat through the pylons of the trestle. Once I passed under the bridge, a big phat bald eagle came into view of the atop big fir tree located on the western shore of the bay.

I paddled up to the bridge where Woodard Bay Rd passes over. The water was still flowing out, especially under the bridge. This is where I turned around. The was midway point, which was about 7.5 miles from Boston Harbor Marina.

I dinked around the bay for a little bit, and decided that I had killed enough time that I would finish the last little ebbing tide of Henderson Inlet, and by the time I got back out to Dana Passage it the tide would be slacking and changing into my direction.

I don't recall exactly what time I got back to the marina, but it was a little after 3:00. I really moved at a snails pace, but my paddling was less than strenuous as I road the tide in and out of the bay.

I was great to be back on Puget Sound again. Here is a link to my last paddle on Puget Sound - Hope Island

And here is a vid of the day:

And here is a higher quality (Quicktime) version (note: it will take a few minutes to download):

If you happen to have Google Earth, here is a link to interactive tour of my trip

Here are a few pics:

View from Boston Harbor Marina:

Eddyline Fathom sitting in Fishtrap:

Dana Passage:

Pylon's of Henderson Inlet:

No comments: