About 20 years ago on a trip to Bar Harbor, Maine, one of the things my wife and I decided to try (I was a bit reluctant) was to go on a kayaking tour. Neither of us had ever been in a kayak. I wasn’t sure if I would like it.
We were given some instructions by our guide before marking the starting point, which I forget where exactly it was in the Bar Harbor area, and then we climbed into a van with other experienced and first-time kayakers with a trailer full of kayaks hitched to the van.
When we arrived at our location, we were given a talk about our life vests and how best to use them if we for any reason fell out of the kayak. That made me a bit nervous. My wife and I chose to go on the water in a tandem kayak – that’s a kayak that seats two.
Our kayak was an ocean (or sea) kayak. Since we would be skirting the ocean, these types are longer, slimmer, and more suited for ocean kayaking. And ours was the kind you sit inside, versus sitting on the top. I prefer sitting inside.
The experience turned out to be quite fun, except for a couple of things. There were two of us paddling in one kayak, so keeping in sync was a challenge, and since I was in the back, I had control of a rudder. We had some tense moments aiming the kayak in the correct direction as the rest of the group we were in.
Needless to say, that was the first and last time my wife and I went out on the water in a tandem kayak. But we loved kayaking so much, that we bought two kayaks, and all the accessories to go out on waterways locally.
We keep them at our seasonal campground, and it’s so relaxing being on the water on a warm, sunny summer day. But when I invite some friends or relatives to join me, since we have two, more often than not, they decline. I get they are afraid like I was that first time, but I think if they gave it a try, they’d love it.
If you’ve never tried kayaking, give it a try sometime. You might find your next favorite activity.
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