We’d been watching the tides carefully for the last couple of days to get a feel for just how much the water would disappear around this far eastern end of Lake Furen. We were keen to go for a sunset paddle into the wild Shunkunitai sandbar area. On this Monday evening, the tides lined up with the end of the remote-work day, so at the crack of 5pm, we headed out the door of our rented cabin and head off towards the sea.
We were about one hour after high tide for the day, so we knew we didn’t have a huge amount of time before the lake started to drain. We made good time to the wooden over-bridge, amazed at the clarity of the briny lake water.
As we approached the wooden foot-bridge, two huge red-crested cranes flew overhead and landed about 50m away.
Further on, groups of curious deer gazed at us as we floated by, clearly not quite sure what to make of us. We had to pick our way carefully along the narrow channel. Either side was almost too shallow for the canoe.
Aware of the receding tide, we didn’t spend much time paddling deeper into the area. We turned around and made a beeline back to our lakeside cabin. Just as we were arriving back, paddling against a strengthening tidal current, the sun was setting over the horizon. Quite the magical end to the day way out east in Hokkaido.