Polar Bear Paddle 12021!

Friday, January 1, 12021 HE

Thank you Peter for pushing for a polar bear paddle! It was not exactly polar conditions out, nor did either of us go in the water, but it was the first day of 12021 (human era, see the video below for the explanation)! And what a great way to ring in the new year.

I am rather indifferent when it comes to new years. Why make this one day any more special than the next, other than the fact that we follow the Gregorian calendar and other remnants of the Roman era of rule (see here). I kind of like the idea of Nowruz (or the Persian new year), which my Persian friends love to emphasize that their new years is the time when the earth actually completes its revolution of the sun. I like the precision, but moreover, I like the fact that it is linked to a distinct cosmological event, the vernal equinox. Arguably every day is linked to a cosmological event but then we get into splitting hairs.

I love this video by Kurzgesagt on the human era which summarizes the arbitrariness of our current calendar beautifully. Their video on time is great too.

Totally fitting video given it was a new years day paddle and it finished at Jericho Beach. Welcome to 12021!

In any case, if new year’s day can serve as an excuse to get out for a paddle I am in.

There was a chance for some windy conditions with an easterly blowing so we decided to try to downwind and paddle from Vanier Park to Jericho Beach.

We had a bit later start as my wife, Annie, was post-night shift. Thankfully, she was gracious enough to let me get out despite essentially having a sleepless night! The later start allowed her to have a short afternoon doze. And Peter was patient enough to accommodate too. Already I have much to give thanks for in 12021!

We dropped off one vehicle at the parking lot near the Jericho Beach Kayak Centre for our dry return shuttle vehicle and got into our paddle gear. It was drizzling. Then it was off to Vanier Park. When we arrived there was not much wind but there was not much rain either. The pic below was taken through a waterproof case so the conditions look much worse than they were. We got our kit in order and then we were off.

Getting out kit in order at Vanier Park. Photo by Peter Rose.

We decided to paddle out into Burrard Inlet with the hope of catching any easterly wind to help us get to Jericho Beach.

Looking westward towards Point Grey near Elsje Point. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.

The weather looked like it was going to be in our favour with clearer skies to the west. The weather gods were on our side.

Looking westward towards Point Grey near Elsje Point. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.

The water was quite flat though, so maybe the wind gods missed the pantheon powwow.

Paddling into great weather for the first of January. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.

As we moved further into the inlet there was a bit of wind and the texture of the water started to change.

An over the shoulder look back at the cityscape. Photo by Peter Rose.

It was a pleasant paddle with calm conditions. We did have a light tailwind throughout so it was easy paddling. We even had a little bit of waves mid-paddle as we approached the Royal Vancouver Yacht Club.

We arrived at Jericho Beach we decided to do a board swap. Peter had never ridden on an inflatable SUP and it has been two years since have ridden a hardboard. It is definitely a different feel and each has its pros and cons.

Back at Vanier Park, the sun was setting and the lighting was amazing.

Sun setting from Vanier Park with Planetarium in the background. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.

There was an abandoned boat at the Vanier Park Public Boat Ramp. Perhaps a fixer-upper project for the maritime minded mechanic.

A shipwreck on the ramp at Vanier Park. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.

There were plenty of passersby who were showing interest.

A couple inspecting the shipwreck. Photo by Mon Jef Peeters.
The lights of False Creek. Photo by Peter Rose.

Our Route

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