I have kayaked in fog a few times previously, but the fog always lifted fairly soon. Also, I have had fish finders with gps mapping so I could monitor my track with that. On this day I had a new toy, courtesy of the postings of Ron Mc from a couple months ago when he highlighted a sale on a compass! So I followed his advice and have a compass on this kayak.
At one point during this outing I was going to cross a bayou to a point at the marsh that was due south. So, I switched to the depth display on the FF and headed out due south by the compass. Now, I mentioned the fog – visibility was perhaps a couple hundred feet, so it did not take too long before I was just seeing fog in all directions. I also made a couple of stops along the way to fish, catching a small flounder for my troubles. After a time I switched the FF back to the map to check my progress. The track that I ended up with was fairly straight but was definitely not due south. I was a bit further west from my destination, due to the east winds and likely outgoing current - neither of these was too strong but enough. So, I turned to the east to get back to my destination, turning the FF back to depth mode.
I finally came to the marsh grass banks and was looking for the entrance that I recalled. But marsh bank grasses are not too distinct. At one point, I thought that I was still in the main bayou waters, with marsh grass to my right and open water to the left, so I would be going east. But I glance at the compass and it is showing west! My first reaction was that that was not right, but then I realized the compass was correct and my brain was disoriented. It turns out that I had gotten into the marsh at a point where it is a big pool just inside the initial grass bank – in the fog I thought this was the main water body since I could not see any edges to it!
Anyway – So I went back to the FF mapping display to get back onto my old track. I pretty much stayed with the track after that since I was heading for pins I had dropped previously and a track through the marsh. I went into the fog initially because it was an exploration, something new for me, and I learned from the excursion. One thing I learned is to not go into the fog without something to get a reference point. I have the FF mapping, but todays technology also puts that on our cell phones with Google Maps. The compass assists, but you need to be aware of the impact on your path from other sources. I wish it had been a nice big red pulling me off course – ah, but I digress!
Oh, while this was a fishing trip, I thought the fog to be a better story to relate. Fish action was limited, though I ended with a slam of sorts – all 3 were on the small side!
Enjoy your next outing, and be sure to post it on TKF!