Tag Archives: kayaking

Fishing from the kayak

Fishing from a kayak can be fun even for a casual angler. I was a fellow kayaker when a brown trout got caught by trolling on lake Haukivesi.

Trying to get the fish out of water is not the easiest part, especially if you have an average kayak, not one designed for fishing. The front hatch was used to transfer the fish to the shore because we were close to it.

Can’t really use this storing technique if angling alone

When you are not angling but paddling, you should fasten your equipment well to your kayak. Under one strap on the deck is not enough while one is busy doing something else like trying to reach chanterelles from the shore without having to leave your boat.

The rod just after being rescued from the bottom of the lake

Another angle to fishing is trying to catch fish with your camera. While I was close to the shore, I noticed this curious perch swimming under my kayak. I put my camera on a monopod and into the water and tried to catch him swimming. How elegant moves.

Kayaking with a dog

To go kayaking with a dog one needs a well behaving dog, an experienced paddler, a stable kayak and good training food for a dog! My friend’s dog Venni tried kayaking for the first time in July. Though he is an experienced canoe dog, the first encounter with the kayak’s back hatch was done with a help of salami.

Though he is a calm dog and can swim pretty well, a calm and warm day was selected for his first trip and he wore a life jacket with a handle at the back. The trip close to the shore lasted only about 10 minutes in case he did not like the idea of kayaking at all. But no worry, this miniature schnauzer was relaxed in a minute.

It is to be seen if he is to join longer kayaking trips later.

“Just checking the shore’s at the back”
Taste of salami still in my mouth
Like the scenery at the back
I’m all relaxed now
Fun, eh?
Look at me!
More speed please
Survived the test ride

Shores of lake Haukivesi in July by kayaking

Arrived again in lake Haukivesi area, a part of lake Saimaa near Linnansaari national park. Though it has been quite wet and cold in the area, the first kayaking day of my stay was very nice and sunny.

The water level is exceptionally high this summer. Here are some pictures that show the situation the same time last year compared today.

Last year
Today
Last year
Today

Checked willow grass in the bay nearby to see if pikes were at home. None spotted.

Pike’s hiding places

Underwater video of the willow grass bay.

Kayaking on lake Saimaa

In early July I went to the kayaking trip to lake Saimaa. Saimaa is a large lake area in eastern Finland with a lot of connected lakes.

The weather was a mixture of strong winds, sunshine, rain but not particularly warm. We started and ended our trip from the harbor of Anttola village. Paddled through lake Luonteri to waters near Puumala village, to the south near waters of larger Saimaa and then back north the other way to lake Luonteri.

The route went through partly quite sheltered waters and partly across wide, open waters. Saw a couple of canoes also, but a kayak is really a more suitable boat to those waters. There are quite many boat harbors on islands and even some places to add your drinking water supplies.

Such a nice kayaking trip with occasional gourmet cooking. Certainly a place to explore more.

On lake Luonteri
Typical shores of lake Luonteri
The home of Saimaa ringed seal
Islands are inhabited by seagulls with youngsters
A view from Rokansaari island
Campfire place of Rokansaari island
Sauna of Rokansaari island
Inland of Rokansaari island
Rafts of timber still transferred
Farm museum of Liehtalanniemi
Some one had launched a fine bark boat
Mexican cooking
A view from the tent in Laajahiekka beach
Laajahiekka
Greater Saimaa
Under the bridge limbo style
Relaxing limbo style
Boats
Early evening
The best possible pizza camp style
Late evening
Waterlily
Back in the harbor of Anttola

Preparing for the kayaking season

Made a quick visit to opening of the kayaking season in Vuosaari Paddling Center, Helsinki last weekend. Lots of kayaks for testing and rescue demos for the audience.

The introduced stand up paddling was funny looking activity, I wonder where in Finland there would be suitable surfs for it. Later there were a kayaking trip organized to collect garbage and clean nearby islands, what a nice idea.

Sunny day at the beach
Rescue techniques
Stand-up paddling
Just a few of the test kayaks

Paddling in Linnansaari national park

In July I spend a couple of weeks in the lake area near Linnansaari national park. I have paddled there before and seen some of its islands. This year I stayed at the cottage on the shore of lake Haukivesi which Linnansaari national park is part of. I made day trips  to the national park area with a kayak and a canoe.

Linnansaari is home of the endangered Saimaa Ringed Seal (Phoca hispida saimensis). I’ve once seen one lying on the shore of an island in Linnansaari national park when kayaking a few years ago but this time I did not see any though looked intensively.

Linnansaari is a great place fo those who want to see protected Finnish lakeland area and explore it by a kayak. To enter the park, Oravi village is good starting point where you can rent a kayak or a canoe. From Oravi there is boat service in summer to Sammakkoniemi camping site in main island of Linnansaari. Linnansaari national park is part of lake Haukivesi which is part of greater Saimaa lake area. It means that you can start paddle south past town Savonlinna to lake Pihlajavesi, pass Puumala village and end up in town Lappeenranta in south-eastern Finland. To north you can reach town Kuopio or kayak to another national park, Kolovesi np. See my other post on Kolovesi.

To go kayaking in Linnansaari national park your have to be a fair experienced kayaker because the transfer route to the closest islands of the park is at the shortest a kilometer away and to Linnansaari island over 5 kilometers (from Oravi village). The weather and wind conditions can turn quite hard pretty quickly so be prepared with latest weather forecasts. There are long open waters where wind can form quite big waves. On good windless weather it nice for even a less experienced paddler.

If interested in other national parks in Finland for paddling see my other blog post– it is a short introduction of the best parks to paddle.

Best possible weather in Linnansaari national park in July
Oravi Outdoor Center - good place to rent a kayak and start your trip
Typical view when paddling in Linnansaari np
In July 2011 water level was quite low
Beautiful bays of Linnansaari islands
Water of lake Haukivesi is quite clear - helps you to see hiding underwater rocks
One of the sandy beaches that are not shown on maps
In July there's still long daylight - this is taken at 8 pm
Lots of cliffs on the shores..
Some are quit steep..
With a kayak you can get really close..
And see things from different perspective..
Nnature's own art..
Close-up of cliffs on the shore from a kayak - heather and lichen
Some sort of algae, Trentepohlia iolithus?
"I could not stop laughing"..
One of those of tens of islands in Linnansaari national park
Huge nest (of osprey I guess) on top of "Kermit"
This is where pike, perch and pike-perch hide
Perch is quite curious - they swim with you
Chanterelles for lunch
Organic superfood of Finland - blueberries
Some visit the park by rowing a so called "church boat" - takes 15 people
View towards a few kilometres of calm open waters of Peonselkä
There are nice routes between islands - this one Selkä-Anttonen and Väli-Anttonen islands
Leaving little islets behind near Vehkaset islands
Perfect day for kayaking again
Heavy rain, no wind - only one day of 14 it rained
Sunset at 10 pm in 29th of July
Just a moment before midnight
Really unbelievable luck with weather - thunderstorms passed by all the time