Friends of Turtle Creek gathered for the first annual “Howl At The Moon” paddle trip on August 18, launching at sunset (8pm) with a moonrise that night at 8:05pm. We had 14 people join us on the trip, 7 got out at Tiffany Bridge and 7 continued to Sweet Allyn Park. Weather was clear an hour before launch time with no prediction of rain (scattered thunderstorms possible at midnight), but as the evening progressed we saw lightning in the distant clouds ahead of us. The paddle was fun and interesting. Some people had headlamps, and I handed out glowsticks for kayaks. The group that got out at Tiffany Bridge stayed dry, but the rain came full on the moment we arrived at our takeout for the 7 people that chose to take out at Shopiere’s Sweet Allyn Park at 10pm. We got pretty wet getting our equipment out and loaded, but were very lucky to be off the creek as the storm was short, but wicked.
The crazy part of the night was the freaky flying fish! Could have been the full moon, or we were just scaring the fish by kayaking with lights at night, but there were fish literally flying out of the water. One jumped over my kayak and I felt it skim my face as it went by.
It was really interesting kayaking in the dark and I’d do it again!
Notes for next time: I’d pick a night that the moon was already higher in the sky at sunset. Although we saw a rising moon behind us, it was blocked by the treeline and didn’t really light up our paddle. Later clouds moved in and blocked it totally.
Report by Therese Oldenburg
Photo credit to Terry Meyers