Today I was looking for mellow and that's what I got. I paddled out of Emeryville and along the normally shallow, marshy shoreline from the 80/880/580 interchange to the Oakland Bay Bridge toll booths, affectionately referred to as "the maze". Like most residents of the greater Bay Area, I've passed this cove in a vehicle hundreds of times and never once paddled it. On a normal high tide there's less than a foot of water, if any, and it's not worth challenging the getting-stuck potential. This morning's 6.9ft high tide brought the entire cove into play and gave me a reason to stay local.
Looking back towards the "maze"
The cove is full of evidence that suggests it was a happening inlet back in the day. Weathering piles, dilapidated duck blinds and boathouse remains fill the cove with nostalgia and give a slow, quiet feel to an area normally experienced at 50 mph. Nautical debris lines the shoreline while land that is usually high & dry is a foot under water. The water is close enough to the highway to read license plates in the commuter lane. It's an odd place to paddle, but I feel strangely connected to it and will be back during the next set of spring tides, if not sooner.