Just over a week ago while I was on the "Song of the paddle" (canoe) forum I read a post by a guy called Shewie (forum name) from Yorkshire who'd been up to Loch Lomond with some fellow canoeists and bushcrafters. They'd been finishing their trip just as the snows had hit us and Shewie had left his trivet (a metal stand for cooking over an open fire) behind while packing up. He wasn't sure if he'd lost it at the layby at Aldochlay or on Inchconnachan island (where they'd camped). Whilst the trivet wasn't worth much, it was much valued as Shewie'd had it made specially to his own design. I said I'd have a look for it the next time I was going out on the Loch.
My intention had been to go for a paddle much sooner but with the snow and ice we've had and working a lot the opportunity hadn't presented itself until yesterday. The forecast was for a strong northwesterly wind to moderate as the day went on and milder cloudy conditions to turn to cold clear weather during the night.
I left Helensburgh just after lunchtime and was on the water ready to go by 2:30pm. Just prior to setting off I had to nip back to the van to get something I'd forgotten and what caught my eye lying in the undergrowth next to the pavement? Shewie's trivet, a little rusty from the salt but otherwise unscathed.
I paddle a lot on Loch Lomond and to be honest I can't wait to go further afield to explore in my new canoe but with the short winters days and cold weather it's great to have this beautiful spot virtually on my doorstep. I don't think I could ever tire of paddling around the islands though, the scenery constantly changes with the weather and the seasons and this trip was one of my best so far. Thanks to Shewie for providing the excuse!