The following is a true story, only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Ice Water

Looks warm right ? 

 So I got this message on the Imperial Venture Corps FB page   Canoeing minnehaha creek today. Dam release is at 300 it is going to be a bit spicy with a couple bridges. And cold. Still in the planning phase but likely starting at noon at Minnetonka Mills and going for a couple hours.    I replied back..... needing a little more info, but basically... IN.
The water is cold and very clear. I used to seeing it a lot murkier 

 At the time of this writing the creek is way up , at 300cfs at Gray's Bay dam, and not normal for the end of November. The chart below is from the Canoe Minnehaha Creek website. 
DISCHARGE (Cubic feet per second [cfs])CREEK CONDITION
Less than 75 cfsPoor
75 cfs - 150 cfsGood
Greater than 150 cfsDangerous
small-ish rapids typical  

going under 169

prepare to ram 
  Five of us met at the above mentioned location around 12:30 pm, air temp around 26-27 F, and were in the water shortly after. I was the (in a singing voice) "one of these kids is doin' his own thing"  as the lone kayaker. The other four gentlemen (Oneil and three others that do not have code names yet) were riding high in two canoes. I say riding high because my low-riding kayak had me sitting in a seat full of water within 10 minutes after the second set of small rapids. Despite having somewhat of a spray skirt on my recreational kayak with an enormous cockpit, the water splashed in from the side.  Fortunately my thick layers of clothing absorbed the water and my legs got to enjoy the cold as well as my ass, all the while my neatly kept drysuit remained on the floor of my van. Note; if you have a dry suit and it would make sense to use it don't leave it in your vehicle. 
Ice breaker "Clifford" 

Take out at the dam in Edina 
  The rest of the day went smoothly, and not that much different than paddling in the summer, except for the attempts to turn our boats into mini ice breakers on the sections of flat water. Nearing the take out, several hours after starting, the sun began to fade the wind picked up. I was getting a bit of a chill going and my thoughts wandered to that of a hot tub ,and me in it.  We had covered about nine miles, which seemed about perfect to me. There were no complaints from the others so I would assume they all had a good time and were ready to finish up as well. This day-trip has sparked some interest for me to try and paddle at least once a month through the winter, I'm ready for more as long as there is some open water.

PS... not sure why the writing and font is all F-ed up ....I'll try to fix it later

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