I've wanted a kayak since I was a kid, now at 60 I finally bought one - what was I waiting for? I've had boats, I've built boats, but a kayak was something I wanted but kept putting off. Dumb doesn't describe that.
I bought if off amazon after, literally, years or research and reading. It's a 10 foot, 52 pound, sit on top, 375 pound capacity. Perception Piscadero. No, I have no vested interest in promoting it, it's just the one I chose. Bright yellow in color. I launched it for the first time this morning, just got back a little while ago. Man, what a trip.
I drug it down the bank and into the river, pointed it upstream and started paddling. The river is low, the current gentle. The water clear as can be. I don't bend well, never have, so my major fear was that I wouldn't be comfortable. Perish the thought, I was as comfortable as sitting in a recliner. No issues there at all. Being a sit on top it's easy to get in and out of - and I had two a couple of times due to shallow water.
Paddling is as natural as it gets. I am way out of shape and smoke too many cigars, yet other than a mild tiredness in my shoulders it was a breeze to paddle up the river. I paddled about two miles, then turned around. It was hot and muggy, sweat was running down my face. I should have brought a small towel to wipe the sweat from my face - I will next time. I saw a lot of fish, a lot more than I expected to in the bright yellow boat - but it's a very quiet ride and so the fish didn't bolt until I could see them, or at least a lot of them didn't.
When I reached the bridge and began to move under it I discovered a threat I hadn't thought of. Bird droppings. Hundreds of swallows were swooping around under the bridge, literally a cloud of them - droppings hit the water all around me but luckily I was not hit directly - a new reason for a wide brim hat while fishing!
After I had gone the two miles I started hearing far off thunder and figured it was time to head back. Coming back with the current was sweet pleasure, just a few adjustment strokes now and then. Gliding silently over the water and looking down into the clear water felt almost like flying. The absolute silence of the ride made it possible to hear all of nature's sounds. The slap of a fish tail in the water, brids singing, trees rustling in the fresh breeze.
Coming back I was heading into the wind, a front passing through ahead of the thunder storm I could hear in the distance. A cool light breeze that smelled of rain in my face, drying the sweat and cooling me off nicely. That breeze picked up the smell of the river and mixed it with the smell of rain, an earthly odor that was heady and beyond just pleasant, nature's best perfume. I saw a school of nice bass and I coasted on beyond them, got out of the kayak and came back and caught a few. Then back in the kayak and coasted on home.
It's a different world in a kayak, it's slow and quiet and amazingly beautiful - and comfortable. Sitting on top of the water, layed back and relaxed, moving easily and quietly, it brings peace. That's the best way I can describe it, it brings peace.