We are now well into December and there is still no winter in sight in the weather forecasts. Two weeks ago we at least had snow for a few days, which was really nice in the middle of the November misery (November had only 5.1 h of sunlight in Turku).
Normally the lack of a proper winter would have me very frustrated at this point, but this time it isn't too bad. In addition to having a lot to do at work, my rediscovery of kayaking after an eight year break has kept my spirits up. It is more fun to go paddling instead of riding in the very wet forest, something I try to minimize also because of potential trail damage.
One of my goals for next summer is to learn to paddle with a Greenland paddle. My eagerness (or impatience if you want) led me to get one a little early. I took it to the pool training a week ago for some roll training and found it to be quite nice. Yesterday I tried it for real and was again pleasantly surprised. I have a 228 cm long Lahnakoski Greenland, but next summer I'll probably make one myself. It should be possible to make a lighter one with a few hours of work.
Much to my surprise, there was a little ice in a few places on the lake. About 7 mm is enough to make paddling through it a bit difficult.
Ordinary cruising speed, about 8 km/h, was easy enough with the Greenland paddle, but the top speed was slower than with a large bladed paddle. I couldn't go much faster than 9 km/h. The Greenland paddling technique is a bit different, so it should be possible to improve a little, but I still think the top speed will be lower. It shouldn't matter much, though.
I'm still waiting for the winter, but in the meantime I'll do some paddling.