Thursday, April 24, 2008

Destination Little Whaleboat Island

Photo quote for today: "You learn to see by practice. It's just like playing tennis, you get better the more you play. The more you look around at things, the more you see. The more you photograph, the more you realize what can be photographed and what can't be photographed. You just have to keep doing it." -Eliot Porter

This weekend's images are from a day trip that John Theberge and I took out of Harpswell Neck, which is located in the northern end of Casco Bay. Our plan that day was to paddle south to Little Whaleboat Island.

We started our trip at a place called Lookout Point. Off on the very distant horizon to the right is Shelter Island, which was to be our first stop of the morning. With a clear blue sky, we were able to navigate this leg by line-0f-site, and not have to spend time looking down at the compass or GPS. We put in at around 8:00 am, and if we caught all the lights, figured we'd make it to Whaleboat around mid-day.

Roughly and hour out of Lookout Point, we were on the approach to Shelter Island. The ledges in the foreground seem to be a favorite spot for various sea birds. The granite shoreline made the landing a little challenging. The island turned out to be totally tree covered and fairly steep, so after a quick break it was back in the kayaks. Because Little Whaleboat Island was still somewhere over the horizon, the next leg of the trip would need to be navigated by chart and GPS. The next group of islands on route would be The Goslings. The challenge with finding your exact location in Casco Bay is that there are three-hundred and sixty-eight islands to choose from. If you miss your target island you end up wasting time getting back on course.

This area of Casco Bay is dotted ledges, which is great for the birds, and keeps the boat traffic to a minmum.

The Goslings is a grouping of three small islands, with the larger of the three below a favorite destination point for boaters. On this day we decided to pass on a landing and paddle through to our final destination point.

After about fours hours of paddling we beached the kayaks on Little Whaleboat Island. 

On the back side of the island we observed another kayaker who had paddled in from the south.

On our way back to Lookout Point we chose a more westerly route with more favorable winds. The image below is from the west side of Lower Goose Island. Once we cleared this island the wind came up strong, so the cameras packed for the day, and we had to focus on keeping the kayaks on course.

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