Aug 13, 2014

Lobster SUP CUP: Beautiful Maine

Camden Harbour, Maine


I feel so lucky to have gotten the opportunity to explore a little gem hidden in the northeast of the US in the state of Maine. Camden, ME is this fun little coastal town along a beaut of a harbour and filled with tourists (in tourist season). Surprisingly, it is totally a little outdoor mecca too!

I got the fine pleasure to have participated in a great grassroot, unique, fun, and beautiful race called the Lobster SUP CUP.

I arrived Friday evening so missed most of the "party" but caught the tail end which included my first ever Lobster roll and some delicious chicken tacos from Fox on the Run: this great local food truck... AMAZINGNESS! I already love this place. I also got the pleasure to stay with the race organizers in their house, whom happen to be some of the nicest, entertaining, and helpful folks. Their house was this beautiful old 1800's house with a white picket fence, a stone's throw away from town...
Fox on the Run food truck

Saturday day 1: We started in Camden where we had a great race briefing some fruits and bars and time to get our things together. There were a ton of Werner Paddles and SIC boards around, I loved it... I felt like I was on the teams to be on:) The crowd was positive and welcoming. Our actual start was a short paddle away at Kurtis Island to avoid the busy harbour boats. The start was totally fun as the water was messy with chop from all directions. As I was paddling out to the first buoy I could hear people falling in the water all around me... I had to really focus so I would not join the party going in the water and stick with the crowd staying ON the water...The waters off the start definitely challenged some folk which allowed the field to spread apart. Around the first buoy at the graveyard rocks we headed for a very very light downwind (we were hoping for more but...) to the next buoy.. then along the coast and into the harbour. It was very peaceful and serene out there. The harbour tour during the race was kind of fun as you could take any line you wanted through the boats as long as you came into the harbour on the right side.... I was a little concerned about this section at first but in the end it was totally fun with people cheering and others totally confused, the traffic... chaotic but organized and entertaining. The hardest part was going through the finish knowing we had another smaller lap to go... hahaha... always tough on the mind but it is good practice and training:) So, after the harbour tour, off we went for a second different lap... that lap was okay until the last bit where I was done mentally... but once I crossed the line it felt great to be finished, tired, and sore... I love that feeling when you worked your body nice and hard. I was on a SIC X12'6 PRO and faired fairly well amongst the men on 14ft boards... Cyril came across in first and Bill from St Croix in 2nd. Kim from NE came in 2nd for the ladies.
Thor and Mark, the brains and power behind Lobster SUP CUP!

Saturday evening was probably the highlight of my weekend in Maine. I got to retrieve some lobsters right from their traps, put them in the cooler, walk them up the docks, bring them to the house, dump them in the steamer, AND then EAT them.. it was my first ever lobster feast and I loved it!!! Alex kindly provided the lobsters that he caught that day, the Benjamin family provided their home and Thor and Amy helped host...
carrying the empty soon to be filled cooler to the docks
picking the lobster
Alex, the lobster man

Sunday was day 2, the second 10mile race of the weekend. I definitely felt sore in my triceps but otherwise pretty good. I actually haven't done two long paddles back to back in awhile... so it was feeling good to be sore and tired... The second day we took off at Rockport Harbour a quieter picturesque harbour just down the road from Camden. Here we did a big triangle course where we headed to the breakwater of Rockland yet another harbour along the coast. The coast line is quite pretty in these parts and it was really fun to get to see these different harbours and areas over the weekend. Thor and Mark did a great job of showing off their amazing surroundings. The wind was extremely light on day 2 but the water in parts was pretty swirly so you still had to be on your toes and pay attention. It was a beautiful day and a great course for day 2. I definitely felt my body once we reached the end:) I managed to win the races over the weekend and therefore the overall title!
Top 3 ladies
Thank you SOPO SUP (Portland, ME) for the amazing support
My last morning in Camden was an early one. Thor picked me up with running shoes and we headed for a trail run up and over Mount Battie. Once we returned to our starting point we switched the shoes for boards and paddles and went for a SUP around Rockport Harbour. Totally my kind of morning and it was a beaut of a morning too with gorgeous views and peaceful paddles.... I ended my time with lunch with the ladies at Salt Water Farm in Rockport. It has the perfect patio overlooking the harbour with some great food and people. THANK YOU Mark, Thor, Amy, Karin, SIC, and everyone for helping me make it to this race. I HIGHLY recommend anyone to put this race on their calendar for next year you will NOT regret it....

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

1 comment:

Mark Benjamin said...

We love Lina! A super athlete and even better person. See you next year.