Day 4 - A Little Help From the Smiths

  Today marks my 4th day on the water and about 75 miles paddled total! Things have been fun for sure, and getting settled and working out the kinks in my gear has been interesting. Everyday I get a little faster, and everything develops a rhythm of its own. My route today involved transitioning to the Gulf from the inter coastal. I left from Fort Walton beach and paddled into Destin out the East Pass. The waters were crystal clear, and momentarily I felt I was already in the keys. Guess not. I got my first taste of big waves as I pushed out past the wakes from the many boats passing by and then into the open sea. I'm excited to say that the boat held together great and is still water tight after being knocked around today!


  As I neared my destination, Topsail Hill State Park, I had to figure out how to make a landing in the rough surf. I went for the "go as fast as I can and hop out before I hit something" method. Sure enough as I paddled in I caught a small breaking wave and rode it all the way in! At the last second I popped off the skirt, jumped out and pulled the boat to shore before another wave could catch me! Still surprised at how smooth that went.

 I was unsure of the camping set up, but I was able to snag a nice tent plot a little ways inland. Upon my arrival I met the Smiths, a wonderful family (with no shortage of kids) from Atlanta. They helped me with my gear, loaned me some supplies, and even took me out to dinner!

 I was in awe at how they functioned, traveling around the country in their RV, all NINE of them and sure enough they figured they'd take one more person on. Jessica and Adam you guys are doing things right and I wish you all the very best!


  1. Cole, you are so blessed to meet such nice people! Just keep paddling and hope to see you at the Suwannee next weekend!

  2. Agreat big Thank You to the are such a sweetheart it is natural for folks to be drawn to you...wish I could be paddling with you...keep on keeping on COLE


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