Thursday, July 8, 2010

One More Cold Morning

Last cold morning 5.15am at Clontarf. Then I can wash and dry all the paddling clothes.

I will be taking three sets. I wear SKINS under everything, that except for a pair of Budgee smugglers. I find the SKINS stop muscle stiffness and aching, especially the next day. So paddling 7 days in a row makes that important. Also the skins wick off sweat, so you skin stays dry. After 18 hours paddling they are going to stink a bit.

Over the Skins I wear pure New Zealand made Merino thermals (from Mountain Designs). Top and bottom, full length. Sometimes 2 sets on the top. These are soaked from sweat and condensation after paddling an hour or so, so wool is absolutely essential because it stays warm even when wet.

I wear a light spray jacket over the SKINS and thermals, and a pair of quick dry board shorts. Slippery ones, for rotation with no pockets, or seams that would chafe during rotation.

I wear a skirt all the time to keep water off my legs and the inside of the Kayak warm. The PFD also helps keep my top warm. In North Canada and Alaska they get afternoon thunderstorms with freezing rain, so I have a big Parka that I keep behind my seat in the cockpit. This I can put on over the lot PFD and all.
I also carry a light weight but pure wool jumper to put on if it gets super super cold.

I don't wear gloves, they give me blisters. I Vaseline my hands each morning before I start and that stops them getting soft with the water and blistering up. I do have some woollen gloves with a palm and finger grip, but I will only wear them if it is extremely cold.

On my feet I have pure woollen socks inside neoprene booties. On my head I have again a pure wool, Icebreaker skull cap under a paddling cap. The paddling cap keeps the paddle splash out of my eyes.

So the routine each night when we stop will be to get out of the wet gear and put on "fresh" skins and thermals and sleep in them. I will hang  that days gear to dry over night. Remember it is sort of 24 hours sun over there.
I have to hang that  "smelly washing" a bit away from the tent because it will attract bears. I reckon if I get a picture of a bear with my SKINS it will be worth a fortune so probably I wont hang them too far from the tent and hang bells on the clothes line to wake me up, and keep the camera handy.

I will probably take a pair of Crocs to walk around the camp site in and generally chase bears with my camera.

My list of things to do seems to be getting longer rather than shorter. I broke one of my front teeth yesterday. I kept the bit and tried to Superglue it back on but that did not work. Probably wrong glue. So I had to add to my list, going to the dentist.

I tried to get a look on the label of the glue the dentist used. You know why the dentists have all their evil instruments behind you. It not so the instruments you cant see wont scare you. It is so you don't get to see what brand of glue they use.

Medibank could save a lot if they advertised on their web site what glue the dentists use. Then we could all glue our own teeth back on.

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