We found the perfect place to launch our kayaks in Maple Bay. It’s less than 30 minute drive from our house and has a parking lot right by the launch spot which means a minimal carry to get our boats into the water. It’s a busy place on a beautiful summer day. At 9am there were already rowers from the rowing club coming back in, people setting up their chairs on the beach, fishing boats being launched, SUP boarders out and the local kayak shop getting their rentals ready.
We foolishly did not buy the charts for this area while we were still in Ottawa, and of course now we can’t get any because the government department that issues the charts is closed due to COVID-19. And our GPS mysteriously died when Bill was loading the new set of digital charts we purchased. So we pored over weather, tide and wind tables ahead of time to decide when and where to go. And we also decided to try the one app that most people swear by: Navionics. It gave us the information we needed, and we felt we were ready to venture forth.
And although we did not venture far, we had a spectacular paddle for 2 hr, covering 12 km. The conditions were perfect. Very little wind, sunshine, cloudless blue sky and great scenery and launching at high tide meant that currents would be minimal during the slack tide time.
Maple Bay is a picturesque town right on the water, with moutainsides that seem to empty into the water. So houses in this area are premium priced I’m sure because they have premium views. They are visible high up on the mountainsides and vary in size but all lovely to look at (well, drool sometimes). Many have LONG sets of stairs to get to the water so they have a built in fitness plan as well.
We saw seagulls for the first time since we have been here, and our friend the blue heron sat here for a while until he decided to fly away.
As we made our way down a channel, away from the houses, we were reminded of Georgian Bay with lots of rocks and trees and a bit of Saguenay Fjord where we paddled last year with cliffs and hills rising from the channel.
We crossed the channel to the uninhabited shoreline but since we were paddling at high tide so we could see much in tidal pools etc along the shore. We will have to do another paddle to see that. We noticed that there are not a lot of places to pull out but we did find a couple small beaches that could be good lunch or rest spots.
So @Sandra & Dave and @Matt & Jason, this will be the perfect place for you to paddle with us when (not if) you come to visit 😉 It’s beautiful and there is a kayak rental shop right on the beach.
So 3rd time out in our boats, and it’s our favourite one so far. We’ll be back for sure!
2 thoughts on “Meandering in Maple Bay”
Anita, I am a lurker enjoying your stories that give me such an added appreciation for our beautiful home. It is great to read about the area through the lens of a “newcomer”. A heads up about Maple Bay ….it is a fluky area. Winds are unpredictable and can be very strong when the surrounding areas are calm. The tides run strong through here with a tidal passage – Sansum Narrows just south ( great area to explore in a kayak as long as you know the tides and currents). Also when you launch head into the bay and you can go into a small tidal bay at the very head of the bay which is very pretty. Keep on having fun but leave something for next year !!! Alison
Hi Allison. Thanks for the note. We had figured out the ‘dangers’ of Samsum Narrows so steered clear for today. The tides and currents are still new for us so we would rather try to do with someone that is more experienced. We are having fun and glad to share. Hope to see you soon on the shores on Somenos!