Yukon, July 28
Friday – Day 36 on Water – We still are having very good weather. It is only a matter of time and the weather has to change.
We are getting more wind and with that comes more work. I am constantly looking at the weight between Stormy and myself, all the gear, etc and at times I wonder if this Feathercraft is the right kayak to be doing this sort of trip. It works great when there is current. Even when there is current with a brisk breeze or a good wind coming up river, it does fine. I have worked hard at eliminating gear. I have mailed a box back to Cam’s, given the cot and a good deal of stuff away.
But once you lose the current, with a brisk breeze and a good stiff wind coming up river, you are working very hard to do 1 to 2 miles per hour. 8 hours and you haven’t gone very far and you are extremely tired. You get fooled and complacent when there is a good current, favorable weather and no wind. 50 miles a day is easy. Then I am not even dwelling on the amount of energy at the end of the day it takes to cross the channel to get to the Island to camp. Lake Baikal in Russian will be this way. 10 hr day, 20 miles for lake paddling. 1,200 miles is 60 days. No other way to plan it.
I hope to get to Galena today, late this afternoon. The only thing that will prevent that is I have to stop because of the wind. By getting there on a Friday afternoon, it means I can resupply, internet up and get back on the water before the day is over.
We arrived in Galena about 5:00 after the wind coming up to our backs. I sailed very hard and fast for about 20 miles. Then I had to traverse across the river to be able to hit Galena without paddling on the side of the river the wind was hitting. I would have never gone anywhere and had to stop and wait the wind out.
Once I got across, the wind carried us right to the village. It was windy and raining. Once again I had to set up in the wind and rain. We set the tent up on the front lawn of the Alaska Fish and Game whose office was right on the bank of the river where I had hit the bank.
Once the tent was set up, I left Stormy in the tent and walked up to the grocery store. It was about closing time for them, so I got something hot to eat out of the Microwave and said I would be back at 10 in the morning to stock up.