Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Mud Bay Launch

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
May 5 -7, 2005

The Start, Beginning, Threshold of the trip was Mud Bay, Eld Inlet, Olympia. It was aptly named for it was a shallow brown water bay and deep aromatic mud flats fill with beer cans and bottles from the roadside bar, whose back parking lot I was launching from. I had picked this area to start my trip from for three reasons. One, it was one of the southern most waterways in Puget Sound. Two, with its dirty waters, my trip could only get better from here. Three, and the real reason, the Blue Heron Bakery is across the road from where I put the boat in. Giant coconut macaroons and chocolate chip cookies start the trip in the best way.

Monday, May 30, 2005

Pack the Yak

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.

I am usually quite organized packer, but on the first day it was entertaining. I had worked all night and had gotten no sleep. I had a deadline of 2pm before the tide got to low and I was running late. I put the kayak on the banks of Mud Bay and proceeded to stuff it at random with everything that was in the back of my truck. I still had 1/3rd of my stuff left in the truck when the kayak was full, close enough, let the trip begin.

Sunday, May 29, 2005


Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
Mary Lou was there to see me off and to take pictures. My biggest fear at that time was that I would get into the fully loaded kayak, roll over into the aromatic Mud Bay and she would take pictures of it all.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Paddling North

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
The first strokes of the adventure, hope I don't sink or flip over.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Totem on Eld Inlet

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
We have our good byes and I start to paddle north up Eld Inlet, past the beer bottles, wrecked cars and old sunken boats. I was getting a little depressed till I paddled up to a Welcome Totem Pole that was facing the way I was to go. I would now be starting and ending the trip at NW Native Totems.

Thursday, May 26, 2005


Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
The waters of Eld Inlet were glassy calm, with reflections of clouds off my bow. Clean ripples of my boat Au Kalan parted the water as I traveled north.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Hope Island Camp

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
I made it to my first campsite on Hope Island around 8 pm. Set up camp, cook dinner (remember to pack waterproof matches) and went to sleep.

May 6th was a windy day, I cross Budd Inlet to the catch the ebb tide in Dana Passage. The wind is from the south so I put up my kite and go for a wild wind powered ride through the pass. I made camp on Anderson Island at 2:30 pm.

May 7th is was a long day, with and early start at 6am. Calm waters and light winds carried me to Defiance Park Zoo in Tacoma. There I was picked up by my good friends Caveman, Troll and the Princess. To celebrate the completion of my first leg of my journey they brought me out to Indochine, Seafood and Satay Bar – Wow, what a feast.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

TACOMA to SEATTLE May 22 – 23, 2005

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
I turned 40 this month. Old man with new aches and pains. Time for a mid-life crisis? Why not kayak to Alaska on a Solo Trip? Well here I was at sunrise at the Point Defiance Park getting ready for the next leg of my training route. Mary Lou had gotten up before sunrise to bring me here and take the car home, where she met me the next day at Golden Gardens, Seattle.

I started with the plan to ride the ebb tide down the west side of Vashon Island, Colvos Passage to Bainbridge Island. It turned out to be a wicked day of paddling, ripping currents, howling wind, rain and white-capped waves. It was so bad that I had to creep along the shoreline and fight the back eddies till I got to Blake Island.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Blake Island Blackbird

Originally uploaded by Au_Kalan.
The winds picked up even more and I was trapped on Blake Island. I used this time to have a good lunch and a nap. A crow came by to visit and try to steel my food every time I tried to nap or when I turned my back to get something. The crow was quite the bold little fellow. A few hours latter the wind died down some and I was able to make it to Ken and Meg’s on Bainbridge Island. Again my friends treated me to a feast that could not be beat. If this keeps up I will gain weight on this trip.

I was worried that it would be windy the next day, blocking me from doing the crossing to Seattle. I was relieved to wake up to total quiet, a perfect sunny day for paddling. I make the crossing to Alki Bakery for breakfast and then over to Golden Gardens, Seattle, where Mary Lou picked me up.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The Idea - Kayaking the Inside Passage

Years, maybe decades past, someone planted the idea of Kayaking the Inside Passage in my young sponge like mind. Hidden deep in the cobwebs for all those years, till now.