Monday, July 15, 2013

Brittany Kayaking

During my recent vacation in Brittany, I rented a kayak for one day.  Bonnie would probably not approve of the type of kayak used - it was not a "decked" one (I don't know if that is what you call them in English - in French they are referred to as "ponté") but a sort of one piece molded thing. You sit on it, not in it. It kept us afloat, but obviously you could not do a roll in it.

We started out in Baden and, carefully timing things to be going with the tide both ways, paddled over to the the Conleau part of Vannes and back.  Nothing dramatic, but a nice paddle including a stop at one of the many islands on the way.  We saw several large jellyfish that I wasnt familiar with - their main bodies slight bigger than a basketball and very solid looking. A guy at the kayak place said they are harmless.

But the most interesting part of the day was observing the French at the kayak rental site. In the morning, we saw several young men preparing to rent kayaks and all were bedecked in costumes, the best being the above young man dressed up as Obelix (the PFD looked like a real paunch).  I have no idea why they were dressed up, but he was happy for us to take his photo.  However, he did confess when we asked that his cigarette was not a Gaulois.

Then on returning there was a wedding party of some dozen people renting kayaks, including a long dragon boat.  They all had straw hats with the bride and groom's names on them and they had all clearly been partying before they got to the kayaks. They were taking the boats over to a nearby village and I suppose there were some sort of continuing festivities there to greet them.  We watched them take off in various states of efficiency/sobriety. The women on the dragon boat were singing lustily and it looked like they were having a great time.


  1. wonder why so many would be in costumes!?!

    I've known those sit-on-top kayaks as "ocean" kayaks, but I'm not sure if that's the correct name for them. I've used them several times on Lake Michigan (sort of a small-ish ocean at times).

    I just did my 1st legit sit-IN kayaking last week, although we didn't have the skirt thing to actually be able to roll the kayak over and right it back up again. but we did take a nice paddle around a small lake for several hours. a lot of fun, and pretty decent exercise!

    I just need to remember water and snacks next time, and maybe some sunscreen, too!

  2. How can I complain about sit-atop kayaks when the kayakers dress so splendidly!

    And I'm fine with those kayaks anyways - I wouldn't trade my Romany for one but if I had a chance to go kayaking someplace neat and that's what the local rental place had to offer, I would take one, have fun, and enjoy getting some sun on my legs!

    Ocean Kayak is probably the most well-known manufacturer of sit-atop kayaks of this type.

    BTW I am checking with my dad to see if the lake where my aunt and uncle had their "cabin" was Livingston, or your parents' own Lake Conroe.


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