The Everglades Challenge 2009 got off to an uneventful start compared to previous years. With a high of 81 degrees (27C), 35% humidity and a light wind on the nose, KiwiBird easily paddled out of Tampa Bay this morning.
This year she has opted to create a pseudo-team with SandyBottom and KneadingWater, which as it turns out is a good thing, since her only GPS system isn't working (a back up was not authorized by FWKB..tell me why one GPS isn't good enough I said...aren't they reliable, I said...guess they're not, eh?)
Thankfully, her SPOT is working beautifully, so she is able to send lat/long coordinates throughout the day and seems to be making good progress. At 10:30 the team stopped at Sister Key to rest their legs and at 13:33 they were a good 25+ miles in to the race.
The game plan is to hit Checkpoint One this evening and then paddle a bit past to camp for the night. KiwiBird is well stocked with eight liters of Gatorade/water for today along with her daily allotment of six Lara Bars, dried mango strips, and a Boost drink (Boost for each evening and morning as well as that requisite cup of tea...the withdrawals from her usual 5 cups/day will be her biggest challenge no doubt).
The Wee One is wondering where the heck Mum is right now. He asked about her first thing in the morning and ran to the front door yesterday about the time that she returns from work saying "Mum, Mum." What do you say to a 22 month-old? '"Mum is out kayaking on the water in Florida because she thinks it's fun "(and will make sure that you think so too very soon)? Hmmm...
KiwiBird is to check-in later tonight and so, hopefully, a final daily report will appear a bit later.