I was looking forward to another paddle on Deep Creek. Watching the tides and weather, I knew Saturday was going to be mostly cloudy but I would be launching at close to low tide. It’s hard to time all these things perfectly, so I went for it. I found frost on my kayak in the morning at 6 am when I pulled out of my driveway. At the launch it was 34 degrees. On a positive side, I knew that I would have the creek all to myself. Heading upstream, I was turned around by a newly fallen tree after about 1/2 mile. Knowing that the tide was going out, I thought just as well as I had passed many large branches barely scraping over them on my way out. I made it back to the bridge and headed west towards the St. Johns. The light was coming in and out and for a while the clouds just disappeared. I thought I was going to have a bust for photography but patience played out. It’s lovely to have the morning light playing in and out of the clouds. With my moving boat, the scenery was constantly changing. As a result I move very slowly, sometimes just drifting with the current and enjoying the views. When something calls out to be photographed, I usually look for a place that i can move my boat close to…a log, some vegetation, or some branches. I try to avoid throwing out the anchor because I’m just lazy. Drifting and shooting doesn’t work, and despite all the times I’ve tried unsuccessfully to do this, I usually try a few shots because I’m too lazy to stop the boat. One day I will learn. I’ve been working hard on my stillness techniques and find it a challenge to position one’s self with camera ready in an absolutely still position. You have to hold this for several minutes to quiet all the ripples. One move, even the slightest one, will send torrents of waves into your scene. I’ve worked this into a sort of meditation as I accept the fact that there is no shortcut to being still and dissipating the ripples. But the results are closer to what I see and feel on the creeks when there is absolute stillness in the crystal clear reflections. It is magical.
The creek is long and gradually widens as you approach the St. Johns. A fellow kayaker passed by. He was obviously enjoying himself and we chatted for a while about the beautiful morning and the special quality of this particular creek. As I approached the end of the creek I checked on the time. It was already 12:30, I had been out for 4.5 hours and needed to find my way home. The return trip was just as special and I took my time and enjoyed the cloudy conditions. I rarely paddle in the afternoon light and found it to be a bit stronger but just as sweet. The tide had come back in and was ready to go back out. Time for me to get out and head home. My boat was out and loaded by 4:30. What a great day.
I ended up with over 400 images from the trip and have been enjoying the exercise of culling, editing, and sometimes finding a gem. Sometimes I find the B&W versions can communicate my emotions in a place most effectively. Spring is a special time for landscapes, as the renewal of the forests is gradual and the transparency of the trees starts to disappear. In a short time the explosion of green leaves dominates the view.