We woke to another beautiful day, and did our best to launch without stepping in the muddy grass.
Erin succeeded. I failed. I must have pulled six or seven leeches off. Yuch. Since our campsite had been grubby, and overridden with mosquitoes, we decided to have breakfast at a nicer spot, and fled.
Some rocks reached out from shore toward the center of the river, so we stopped. Rocks toward the center of the river always had fewer mosquitoes than the woods.
As Erin cooked, a fish jumped in the water, not far from the foremost rocks. I cast my line, and on the fourth try pulled in a small pike. Besides our usual cornmeal, we had fish soup for breakfast. Yumm.
Back on our way, the river twisted and turned and the current picked up again as it narrowed. We passed under a road and found a large lumberyard to our left. The industrial space totally incongruent with the natural wonder that had surrounded us. We thought about refilling our water, but decided not to. We didn’t want anything to do with them, and most likely they didn’t want anything to do with us.
Around a couple more bends in the river we saw a dock with a motor boat at the end of it. The time was 4:00pm. Our kayaks slid over grass growing from the water onto a muddy bank at the base of the dock.
An older French speaking man was home. He invited us to shower and stay the night. His mosquito free home felt like heaven. He’d started building the cabin a few decades earlier, and continued to make improvements, like the laundry line he erected for our newly clean cloths.
He kept it mosquito free by burning an incense like poison coil. In the morning, after the coil had burned out, the mosquitoes came in. I found another one, set it alight, and restored the tranquility. We slept in, and then took our time packing up.
We tried to to clean our clogged water filter. Silt from one of the streams had left it near useless. We managed to improve its performance only slightly.
Our host, thrilled to have us, called his friend over the radio and told him he had kayakers that had paddled all the way from New York. He also swept up a fairly large pile of dead mosquitoes, part of his daily routine.
GPS coordinates: 49.17281, -77.13798