The stars finally aligned, and I got my boats out on the water for the first time this year. The day got off to an inauspicious start. Eliza had a bad cough, Abby wasn’t feeling well, and Stella, well Stella is always a little difficult.
However, Eliza and Abby have been dying to try the mouse boat, and I really wanted to see how the pdracer rowed. So I figured that we could probably sneak down to the lake for just a bit. I wouldn’t take the time to rig the pdracer for sailing. I would just throw the boats in the water and paddle around a bit.
Of course, even that was easier to say that do. KaeLynn and the two oldest children were off doing other stuff. Getting the three littlest girls ready for an adventure, and loading two boats on the trailer turned out to be more work than I would have guessed. Plus, they closed the road that I usually take to the lake, and the alternate route was completely jammed with trucks hauling stuff to the dump. It took well over an hour to get everything ready and drive the few miles to the lake.
Once at the lake, however, things really started to look up. First of all, my new cart worked much better than my old one. The the much wider wheels made a huge difference in the sand, and the fact that I could use my boat as a wheelbarrow meant I only had to take one trip. If you are looking for an inexpensive way to move your puddle duck racer around, I highly recommend building one of these.
The mouse boat got launched almost immediately. Eliza was loving that thing. Considering the fact that she’s never really paddled anything before, and the paddles I made are way too short, she did very well.
The Nephi’s Courage took a little bit longer to launch (mostly due to Stella), but it wasn’t long before we were all out of the water with Abigail happily filming a small documentary. Caution, if you get motion sick easily you probably shouldn’t watch this video.
After a while, Stella and Abigail decided to play in the mud while Eliza and I continued to row (and paddle) around in the boats nearby. It is amazing how shallow the drafts are on both of these boats. The oars were really nice. They balance really well, and they allow me to launch the pdracer in just a few inches of water. No more pulling the boat out until the water is deep enough to deploy the leeboard.
Then Abby wanted to try the mouse boat, and Eliza wanted to take some video. The following video short is the resulting masterpiece. It also moves around quite a bit. It is not move around quite as much as Abby’s video does, but she could also clearly use some pointers on shooting video.
I have saved you some time and cut out what is, at least according to KaeLynn, the best part of the video.
To recap, the oars worked great, the mouse boat was genius, and my cart worked much better than last year. Eliza and Abby both thought that Saturday was “the best day ever,” and Stella hated the boat, but was very cute doing so.