It has been a while since I went kayak camping with Erica, but our current access to low-cost and nice ocean kayaks, plenty of small islands, and allmänsrätt camping freedom really called for some kayak camping this summer. We also have some kayak-keen friends who wanted to come along, so we picked some dates, booked the boats, and started packing! Like all outdoor trips, there is a bit of planning required. In this area it would have been possible to stop at beach cafes, but we planned to cook for ourselves so we could go on some more remote islands without amenities. We may have also been able to find water, but instead we planned to bring what we thought we would need. We discovered on our last camp that our 8-year old tent had EXTREME elastic fatigue in the shock-cord that holds the poles together, so I ordered some online and replaced it all before we headed out this time. Luckily the maintenance went well and the tent held up great even in some stiff wind. We also planned meals collectively, so that we made 1 dinner and 1 breakfast for everyone, then others made the other meals. It meant we got to try some different kinds of camping meals.
We paddled from our local kayak club out through the two ‘quiet lakes’ of Tullingesjön and Albysjön, then out to the ‘big water’ of Lake Mälaren.
Since kayaks can accommodate a lot of gear, we even had a small cooler with us and ended up eating really well! Here are some boss photos that Linn took, including a cliffside lunch with a view of the Royal Palace! Note that this post has some ‘slideshow’ photo decks, so you can use the arrows to see all the photos.
These next photos show our first night camping spot, which needed to be bike or transit accessible so that Lai could join us for dinner and one night, and still got o work the next day. Graham and I did some camping spot scouting by kayak and bike, and ended up coming up with a pretty nice one close to the beach in the large nature park by Skärholmensgård manor house. There were baby ducks, swans, and even a Huggorm (Swedish adder), which you can see in a closeup below heading straight for our tent. We scored a nice private-ish spot with a grill and some sitting-logs and things were great…. until we tried to sleep right as parties got going on the beach. It was Bastille day, which might explain why the fireworks cannon went off at midnight. Not a super restful night for anyone, unfortunately. We ate breakfast, cleaned up, and headed out in the boats to find a quieter spot.
After paddling around, eating lunch by the palace, and scoping out several potential spots, we found another grill spot with benches and even a custom-welded waterside fish smoker! The horseflies were detered by our bug spray, and we had a few boat neighbours, but it was a very quiet crowd so we only heard the wind and the birds (and occasional pinecones dropped by the wind). We woke up to a chillier and windy morning, so hot oatmeal and tea was very welcome before putting on our damp paddling clothes, lifejackets, and sprayskirts and climbing back into the boats for the trip home.
The brisk wind was at our back, so we made great time coming back and things had warmed up. We finished off by washing the boats and having a swim to cool off, then walking over the Tegnérs for fika before Linda and Linn went home on the train. What a nice trip! Our kayak club membership allows us to bring guests, so if any visitors want to come for a paddle and a picnic or camp-out, just let us know!