Man lost on Friday in a small confrontation. That was when I and my fellow canoeist - The Mariner - attempted to exit Algonquin National Park in Canada via Round Lake. We and all the Epicurean campers had had a fine trip - a bit wet, perhaps, and on that last morning had negotiated 36 winding turns in the Amable du Fond River. The wind was calm, the trees at nearly peak color. The final portage was behind us. Then we entered Round Lake and ... whoooosh. Zephyrus, the god of the west wind, was exerting his power ... right into our faces and from the place we had to go to exit the park.
The Mariner shouted, "Steer into the wind, mate". That's the only way to make progress and maintain our steering. [The Mariner was in the bow and Bunkerman was in the stern of our 17' canoe - heavily laden.] We made slow progress, but the wind was increasing. Round Lake is not completely round - it's got a funnel shape on the east side towards the river and we were in the funnel. We were blown off course a couple times - The Mariner said the wind had a cross-current. We persevered. Stroke, stroke and on and on for about an hour, but very slow progress.
Steering was getting harder. The waves were getting larger.
The larger waves begin to toss water into the canoe amidships. Bunkerman shouted to The Mariner, "We're taking on water !" Still we paddled on and on. Then more water - worse - and steering broke down. Bunkerman shouted, "We're not going to make it". We had negotiated only a fraction of the distance . Sinking would really suck ! We chose to head to shore and rode there in a wave-tossed ride like a rocket with the wind. Smashing into the small trees, we held on, but were taking on more water as we were now parallel to the waves.
We struggled to edge around a log, made it to a small beach and lashed the canoe to some trees. Big Al came by to help - he had a kayak and thus much less wind resistance. We told Big Al that we'd walk for help. That we did and then after a couple hours, a CD$40 "taxi" ride for 5 miles, and the help of Big Al and Mrs. Al, we had the canoe and our gear back at the rental site at the park's entrance/exit.
We had survived !
The lesson ? Make your exit day flexible. The prior day was a fine day for canoeing - had we left the day before, we would have avoided this near disaster. Perhaps plan a longer trip, but keep a flexible exit day.
One more thing: in my "humble" opinion, the GORP prize goes to Mrs. Al. Her GORP had little butterscotch chips that imparted a fine delicate flavor. Congrats, Mrs. Al for your championship GORP. [GORP = Good, Old Raisins & Peanuts, a canoeist-hiker's nutritious snack food which can contain whatever else the maker wishes for better flavor.]
I checked the model and the weak sell signal for gold+silver is still there. TIPs are at a new high and I plan to sell more of those. I think I'll slowly take that allocation to zero. Those yield almost nothing and price risk is now very high. I also plan to cut back teh US stock allocation as the S&P approaches 1200.
Word of the Day
"Eidetic" - adjective [$10]
Eidetic means (of a mental image) having unusual vividness and detail, as if actually visible
Sentence: The winds, waves, whitecaps and water sloshing into our canoe has been imprinted as an eidetic image onto Bunkerman's memory cells.