Friday, December 27, 2013

Last paddling of 2013

Only after ten days I found the time to pubblish the pictures of our last paddling of 2013. Everything was organized for some friends coming from West Sicily but at the last minute they had to cancel their visit and only me, Giuseppe and Gianfranco went out: the three guide/instructors of our organization!

Capo Mulini at Gianfranco's place was the meeting point. The weather was beautiful, so nice that we played with some rolls. Of course in the small village of Santa Maria La Scala we got a wonderful granita almond/chocolate.

Mt. Etna was already full of snow, not yet enough for skiing on the south side. Once back home a (late) lunch was ready thanks to our loved wives and we ended the day playing with our children. Great Day!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The monthly meeting in Catania

For the second time we join to the meeting along the coastline between Catania and Acitrezza promoted by the Circolo Canoa Catania. This time the start point is in Acitrezza. Just after the circumnavigation of the small island in front of the harbour we lose sight of the group of the "racers". But it's ok, everyone is paddling at his own pace and we want to enjoy the shoreline... Here, once more, pictures of our loved coastline!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

South Sicily. Kayak meeting to paddle and plan (and eat).

Almost all our paddling days ends with some eating of good food and also this sunday ended with a banquet. From our base we paddled in a light headwind and low clouds to Marina di Modica where we had a stop for warming up a coffee and a hot chocolate for the smallest of the group.

Our next stop was at an ancient port, with cleats carved into the rock that were used for the towing of boats.

On the way back a long wave and the wind helped us but for someone it was time to experience seasickness that quickly ended on approaching the beach and the breaking waves! For someone else it was time to capsize in that waves!

Big cooperation on transporting kayaks, washing equipment and... setting the table with a lot of very good home made food from the south and north Sicilian traditions: schiacciate with sausage and dried tomatoes, scacce with obergines, scacce with ricotta cheese and sausage, scacce with tomato sauce and onions, stuffed peppers, rice salad, ragusano cheese, bred and olive oil, beer, etc...

The planning of the activity for year 2014 has been overshadowed but we had a wonderful day. 
Thank you all!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Alarm Eruption

The early morning of 26th October 2013 a light earthquake woke up the town of Catania. It is the signal that a batch of magma has found its way up through the host rocks. A new eruption starts at the summit craters in Mt. Etna and an ash and gases column rises up for 10.000 meters in the clear sky of a no-wind-day.
 This end of October is absolutely not a normal autumn: sea water is near 23°C as well as the air temperature. In front of the village of Acitrezza many people enjoy the summer-like-day paddling, swimming, rowing, fishing, and laying as lizards under the warm sun. The sea gulls show already their winter plumage and probably were expecting a bit colder weather...
Me and a London inhabitant, climb up one of the stacks made by columnar basalts to have a view on the sea and the cloud generated from the eruption, less than 20 km far.
Common Sea Gull (Larus ridibundus) with the winter plumage.

 On the way back, in the afternoon, clouds cover the view of Etna volcano but we already had a wonderful day and a delicious fish soup in a restaurant overlooking the sea, just above the beach where we left the kayaks. 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Bicylcing experience in South Sicily

Thanks to the cooperation with Sampieri Bay Cycling and Mediterraneo Bike we also organize bicycle tours and this is one of the hundreds excursions we can offer.

The day after a sea kayak excursion in Siracusa I join the bike trip under the guidance of Raffaele, with two very active ladies from Australia.

Our tour leads along the territory of Noto, in the midst of vineyards, olive, almond and citrus groves.
The passage next to ancient farms, which once the wine was produced, is a pleasant break that allows us to enjoy sometimes lemon, sometimes some grape, and sometime ripe dates fallen by towering palm trees.
The path is quite, secondary roads, and we cross very few cars and tractors. Equal amount of paved and unpaved roads, gentle slopes and a few stony grounds.

And at the end of our trip a gorgeous lunch is waiting for us under the porch of Claudio's place, with the Syracuse closed typical pizzas (scacce), olives, sheep cheese (pecorino) and honey from Mt. Etna, all irrigated with a lovely local wine (Nero d'Avola)!