Duathalon Gonzo Style 2001

Three Gonzos (Viking, Malcolm Goat and I'm Selling Halifax) went under the name team Grayhound (to protect the innocent) in the Masters Advanced level orienteering day at Dollar Lake on Saturday! Malcolm and I teamed up against Gordon and a new found orienteerer Mike from Truro (first timer) and set off into the woods and roads at Dollar Lake Provincial Park at about noon on a hot Saturday afternoon.

There were 13 checkpoints to find through hiking, running, bushwacking and just sheer luck! Each of these checkpoints has a number and it's important to verify that you have the exact checkpoint for your category. Malcolm and I found what we thought was checkpoint #4 which was supposed to have #178 on it. But alas, it had #176. Not to be fooled or tricked, we moved on about a mile or so down the dirt road only to find checkpoint #5 and our friends Gordon & Mike telling us that "gee, it must have been a mistake - you SHOULD have punched your control card!!!!"

Yikes! I was nominated to run "up hill" the mile of dirt road back to checkpoint #4, punch our control card and run back to checkpoint #5 where my team mate (Malcolm) was SUPPOSED to be waiting! Aha - I thought we were to turn on to this back road after #5 and I ran about another mile on this old logging road only to find it end - with no Malcolm in sight! Back out to the main road I once again ran only to find my buddy old pal way down the main road looking rather exasperated as to why it took me so long to run back to Checkpoint #4 and back - and why did I look so tired and sweaty? Can you say - lack of communication?!!!!

Oh well, it only meant that Gordon was now about 30 minutes ahead. Did we then move or did we move? Down valleys, into old dried up river beds, through the woods (you should see our beat up legs) we went only to find out that dear old Viking had beat us by about 40 minutes after all! Although, Malcolm & I have a sneaking feeling our comrade didn't get to all the check points. Then again, we all know Viking - he wouldn't do that - would he? Ahem.............

Well, you might think that was enough - 3 and a half hours in the woods for a bunch of gonzos - no way! We hopped into the Subaru-mobile and raced to Warnica Marina and changed vehicles (in case we were being followed) with three handsome kayaks attached thereto on the roof of Gordon's car with two Warnica puppies (cause Gordon promised Nancy he would go away overnight and leave Chelsea or Printer. He didn't say anything about going away and taking them with him!)

Off we went for an hour and a half drive to beautiful LaHave (outside Bilgewater - I mean Bridgewater) dropped in on Gary Warnica for a hello and then headed to Crescent Beach where we loaded our water crafts with all our gear (tents, sleeping bags, food etc., etc.) By the way, we did stop in at Sobey's in Bridgewater where we bought rations for supper (chicken beasts with stir fried veggies sauteed in garlic butter) and Malcolm of course picked up several essentials like licorice allsorts and rolls but failed to take them out of Gordon's car at the beach!

We proceeded to launch our kayaks at the beach - Gordon with puppy #1 and Malcolm with puppy #2 (they didn't dare give me a puppy as this was my first real ocean adventure). I had a blast! Once we rounded a corner and into a cove it was breathtaking! Something out of a deGarthe painting! We paddled for about 50 minutes and landed on the grassy side of what turned out to be a mile long white sand beach only accessable from the water! Gorgeous!

It was now about 8:00 so we quickly set up tents and prepared our gourmet meals. We had a bon fire and yacked until the late late hour of 10 and after a very hectic day we all turned in to sleepy gonzos under a beautiful clear sky with more stars than on Star Trek.

The next morning up at 7 and a walk on the beach (mostly for the puppys!) was followed by a delicious breakfast of scrambled eggs and coffee (who says you have to rough it?). We packed up and left shore around 10. On the paddle back, in water that was like a sheet of glass we noticed a large brown fox checking us out on the shore! I don't think he's ever seen such attractive gonzos and dogs....I don't think he could figure which was which....

As soon as we turned out of the cove and into the open ocean the sheet of glass shattered and it twas slightly exhilerating navigating through the waves. I now know what they mean by 'loose hips'. It was a wonderful time and a trip I'd recommend to all sea going gonzos to try soon.

One of the best weekends I've had in ages. Thanks to my two great friends for making it so. (I of course mean the two dogs, Gordon and Malcom were along just to transport them).