For Christmas last year, I gave K a paddle-making class at the Oregon School of Arts and Crafts. He made the paddle in one weekend in March. On Sunday, he took it on a test drive of Scappoose Bay. Here is the thing: these paddles are so light! And so quiet! It is noticeably different in its sound.
The one he made is based on the Tlingit style from Northern BC. The slender blade is built for quietly paddling long distances (a wider blade moves more water and requires more work). The pointed tip signifies that the paddler is a male, helps with pushing off of obstacles and functions as a weapon. A woman's version is very similar except the pointed end is an inverted U, with two points. Why? For harvesting roots, of course.
Here is a lovely illustration of some other paddle designs.
The day started out over-cast. It almost looks like winter!
But the sun eventually came out!
See the dark band around the base of the trees? That is the dropping water line. After our rainy spring here in Portland, our rivers and bays are swollen. Which makes for wonderful canoeing adventures.
Turtle sightings are rare in the PNW. I wonder what kind he is...