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Paradis Marin, 1 au 4 juillet

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Started out Thursday at noon from Montreal heading to Paradis Marin. We arrived there around 6pm and set up our tent. We were with a group of about 30 paddlers from Montreal. We had a little supper and sat around the campfire for a while and looked out over the cliffs and watched the minke whales and belugas pass. After a while it was off to bed for a good nights sleep.

Friday morning dawned, heavy fog and light rain. After a good breakfast we all headed down to the launch and out into the fog. We were 22 paddlers for this excursion to les Escoumins. The fog had thinned out, wind was calm and the rain had stopped. The paddle was about 6 nm each way on the St Lawrence, with a high tide at 15h15. We paddled against the current both ways, but it was a minor inconvenience as the current was minimal. We followed the shore and looked at some of the older houses and ‘cottages’. We also saw one blue whale, several minke whales and lots of dolphins and seals. We were off the water at around 16h30, went back to the camp for supper and showers. That evening sat around the campfire again and watched the whales pass just down below our camp.

Saturday morning again heavy foggy, but the forecast is for sun and clear skies. About 10h00 the fog thinned and cleared and around 11h00 several of us put out to see if we could get a good look at the whales. We paddled about 1000 yds offshore, rafted up and drifted with the current looking for some whales. We weren’t very lucky, only a few seals showed up. We were off the water at around 16h30 after a beautiful sunny day, and as soon as we arrived at the camp the whales started passing just below us, standard Murphy’s law behavior. A nice supper and whale watching from the rocks finished the day.

Sunday morning again heavy fog but it soon lifted. We debated going out but the 6-hour drive to return to Montreal discouraged us enough that we decided to get an early start. We were back home and everything was washed and put away by suppertime.

Apparently the whales haven’t shown up in numbers yet because the water is still too cold. I can attest to the fact that it is cold, about 6 – 8 deg Celsius or about 42 to 48 deg Fahrenheit. All in all a very nice way to spend a weekend.

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Nice. Sounds like there were plenty of whales. Looking forward to my trip to Escoumins, Tadoussac, Saguenay area with Peter McLaughlin and friends next month.

Were you guys in drysuits, wetsuits, what? I hate to think of wearing a drysuit in August, but that seems to be what is most appropriate for those very cold waters.

Incidentally, your six hour trip sounds like a dream. Ours will be 12-15 hours!

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Most of the people were in wet suits but my wife and I were in drysuits. The water is too cold for a wet suit. If you are interested there is a site that charts the temperature in the St Lawrence river, and you might want to check it before deciding what to wear.


In august if you aren't going too far from the shore wet suits should be enough.

There is also a site where you can check which whales have been spotted in the area during the preceeding week.


Let me know when you are all going, perhaps my wife and I will pop up for the weekend.

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