Monday, July 25, 2011

Castine - Heat Break

Basics:  Launched from Castine Town Dock, parking limited to 3 hours.  Restroom available. High 5:30AM, Launch 8:30AM finish 11:45AM 8.2 miles.
The smokestack on the Maine Maritime training ship "State of Maine"
Last week: hot, hot, hot, humid and hot, hot, hot. Baffinpaddler posted a good guide to staying cool while kayaking, to which I would add only that mornings tend to be cooler than evenings. Even so, one morning we woke early to paddle on the river, and in preparation I soaked the long sleeves of my rash guard before leaving the house. We walked down the hill and paddled a couple of miles, and in the moist morning air the sleeves were just as wet as when I put the shirt on. There’d been no evaporative cooling at all.
So when Sunday was promised to be cooler, we made plans to go to Castine, counting on an early start to increase the odds it would be cool enough to paddle.
It was a mere 73 degrees when we launched at 8:30AM, and not hard to find a parking space.
The waters were fairly busy though, sailboats and other pleasure boats headed out, this windjammer headed in.
Motoring by Dyce's Head lighthouse
The schooner came from the protected harbor behind Nautlius Island. A number of boats take advantage of those quiet waters to anchor overnight.
I like the way this ledge, near Holbrook, echoes the distant Camden mountains
With a fair wind from the north we paddled by Nautilus, along Holbrook Island  and over to Harborside, before turning back into the wind, paddling between Holbrook and Brooksville, then back along the outside of Holbrook to a favorite beach, filled with rounded rocks.
Finally back through the choppy windswept waters to the town dock, just a short paddle, but a joy to be out in cooler weather.
Seal lovers might be happy to note a number of seals lingering on ledges near Ram Island
Meanwhile the Victory Chimes now had its sails aloft and was headed out for the day. Victory Chimes is a three masted schooner out of Rockland, and if it looks somewhat familiar it’s because it graced the reverse of the Maine State quarter .
Congratulations to Mike, the Durhamblogger for helping out in Louisiana during this hot, hot week!


  1. Castine and Cape Rosier are two of my favorite spots to cruise. Tying up at Dennetts for a harborside lunch works great too!

  2. What a beautiful schooner!

    Finally, we're getting a break from the heat wave up here in Canada.

    Do you have any pics or stories of paddling in Seal Cove, Mount Dessert Island, Maine? It was one of my favourite places to visit when I was up there and I can't find any of my pic files. Plus, I only saw a tiny fraction of it while up there and would love to read and see more about it.

    Seal Cove was a bit big to wander off too far (although so tempting) without a good map, navigation skills and knowledge of the tides. The working lobster boats in the area are something to think about too.

    But I brought home a picture of the colourful lobster buoys and wake up to it every morning.

    Love your paddle pics and paddle tales of Maine. One of my favourite places to visit and always on my list to return.


  3. I agree, Dennetts is a great place for lunch.
    We've paddled out of Seal Cove off Cape Rd on the west side of MDI a few times. It is a beautiful cove, very quiet, unlike almost every other launch on MDI. I don't think we've had any paddles there since aquiring a waterproof camera though. We usually have paddled north from the cove, along MDI to Bartlett's or the Pretty Marsh picnic area. Sometimes there are seals and porpoises to watch. Fortunately all the charts are online now, see We use a laminator on them, to make them waterproof and tuck them into chart cases.