First Spring Kayak Paddle of 2018- Hillegom, NL

The small town of Hillegom is the epicenter of the bulb growing region (at least I think so).  Located close to the Keukenhof and surrounded by bulb production fields it is a town that has a old world soulful feel.  I had investigated kayak launch points a couple of weeks ago when the weather was, for one day, beautiful and warm.  (read A Taxing Week)

The weather since has been snow, then bitter cold, then back to the normal rain and wind.  I was about to give up on ever getting the kayak into the water.

Yesterday, the magic weather finally happened.  The clear blue sky, very little wind and the temperature hitting 52F (11C) by late afternoon.  A quick text message to the hubby and it was arranged that after work we would head out to slip my kayak into the water for a short paddle through Hillegom.

map of Hillegom

Start and End points in Hillegom with route in red arrows.

The launch site was listed on and after looking at several other launch sites around Hillegom I found this was the best site to launch a kayak.

launch at Hillegom

Getting ready to launch

launch site in Hillegom

double checking my gear

The launch had easy access to the water from the parking lot and was low enough to the water that it was easy to get into the kayak.

I planned this to be a short paddle.  2km to a take out in the middle of Hillegom.

The first part of the paddle took me past a football field (soccer) and then a small park.

Start point Hillegom

Under the bridge at the start point Hillegom.

I paddled and saw ducks everywhere. The ducks are a bit crazy nervous this time of year as they are getting ready to nest. I was invading a bit on their waterway.

As I paddled, I was thinking how great it was being on the water again.  A bit of a breeze brought the strong smell of hyacinths blooming just up and out of my view in the fields I was passing.

I paddled next to a bike path that I have taken many times that goes between the bulb fields.  I was now experiencing the same area from my kayak. The bike path stops at a main street but from the water I headed straight into the Hillegom town center.


Paddling into Hillegom

My hubby was waiting at one of the oldest bridges in Hillegom (1724) to take a couple of pictures as I went past.

Paddling into Hillegom

Paddling into Hillegom

Paddling through Hillegom

Paddling through Hillegom

Heading towards the take out Hillegom

Heading towards the take out in Hillegom

This was a perfect first paddle of the season.  A special thanks to my hubby for all the pictures he took of my paddle.  Next time we are taking the canoe on this stretch of water.

Where is your first paddle of the season?  

Perfect ending

Perfect ending to my first day of the season kayaking. Tulips from the pluktuin in my office.