I am a grandmother paddling alone over 2,500 miles from Maine to Guatemala. Along the way I will be:
- telling the story of the children who live in the Guatemala City garbage dump community
- honoring their entrepreneurial mothers
- talking about the success of the Safe Passage model school and
- raising funds for additional grades for the school.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Paddle Day 66: Duck Hunting, Rubber Duckie and Tundra Swan

A wonderful gift: a new sticker
A very calm day for the birds, with the constant sounds of the gun shots from the duck hunters, a touching gift of a rubber duck sticker, and a sighting of a tundra swan.

The day started hearing the alarm and then the muffled shots of the duck hunters off in the marsh.  When Jen and the girls and I arrived at the campground we found my kayak had been moved by a friendly couple.  The spot I had left it in was where the boys go to drink and mess around in their four wheelers on a Friday night.  But, how did they move the heavy partly loaded kayak?

Guy drives, woman walks holding up the kayak!
It was a new technique for me!  They got the stern up into a pickup truck, and then, while the guy slowly drove along, the woman walked behind holding up the bow of the kayak!  Sweet!

The best surprise of the day was that one of Jen's girls gave me her sticker of the huge rubber duck that had been on display at the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk.  This art piece by Florentijn Hofman  has traveled the world and brought smiles to millions.
Rubber Duckie in Osaka
Now the sticker adorns my kayak, and brings smiles to me as I paddle along.  As you can imagine, Patito Amistoso is beside himself with happiness to have another rubber duck as a constant companion.

Hugs from the Nora and Meara before leaving.
It was dead calm on the water, and the sounds of shots from the duck hunters were almost constant.
I paddled fairly far offshore to be safe, but I also wanted to see a tundra swan, as I heard they are already arriving here for the winter.  I fondly recall the tundra swans I saw in the Arctic on my previous kayak expeditions, and wanted to see more.

As I rounded the tip of Mackay Island I saw a tundra swan swimming with a flock of buffleheads, right beside a duck blind.  I could hear a camera inside the blind, and assumed the person was not hunting.  Only later did I hear that you can get a permit to shoot a tundra swan in North Carolina, as well as many varieties of ducks.  The shores of the marshes all along these waters are lined with duck blinds.
Spot the tiny tundra swan!
The paddle ended with meeting Ralph at the boat ramp at Hampton Lodge Campground.  It's a great campground at a spot that was originally one of the many duck hunting lodges in the area.
Paddle Day: 66                                                        Date: Nov 22, 2014
Start: Sandy Point                                                   End: Coinjock
Distance: 9.9 miles                                                Total distance: 892.2 miles
Max speed:  4.6 mph                                               Moving ave.: 3.5 mph
Kayak storage:  Hampton Lodge Campground           Hosts: Ralph and Donna Buxton


  1. So glad you got to see a swan! The girls and I had a great time with you and will be following your adventures!

  2. If you intend to use the intercoastal waterway...connecting up with the Pungo, then out onto the Pamlico,...I can offer you my property to camp near the mouth of the Pamlico. Although I will not be there my neighbors would gladly offer any assistance. Don't hesitate to call: Dan Schlüter-410-586-2787
    Looking forward to seeing your fotos of the area!!

  3. So honored to have met you! Very honored to have kept the kayak safe for your journey. Best of luck to you Dr. Deb!!.