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Jonathan Z

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  • Location
    Cambridge, MA
  • Member Title
    Jonathan Zhang

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  1. Great report, Joe! Thanks for helping me dealing with the skeg issue!
  2. Many thanks to John Huth for this great presentation. It is so educational and scientific, and also practical for future outdoor activities. Would like to precise what I have learned while more to be digested in. A link or dropbox to the slides could be very helpful.
  3. Thanks Peter for organizing and helping me solve the whether-cock problem. Thanks MIke for helping me secure the loaded boat. Thanks all for sharing your stories, knowledge, food, and beer. It was a great trip and I am looking forward to the next one!
  4. Anyone is interested in launching from the Winslow Park?
  5. Great to meet Rob and other paddlers yesterday. We were late but it was fun to test our Pintail! Will see some of you tomorrow!
  6. An excitingl trip, Robin. Great to know you made it and accumulated good experince.
  7. Thanks, Warren! There were a few bald eagles hovering around at the southeast corner of the bay. There were also a few birds of prey looks like ospreys there. After the trip, we met a lady who has heard about the snowy owl but never had a chance to spot it. Jonathan
  8. Saturday (April 12) was sunny and warm for shorts and T-shirts, and the forecast showed a temperature of 60s on the second day. It added enthusiasm to our Gang of Four, planning a trip to circumnavigate Great Bay, NH. We had a detailed float plan, and an onshore participant for emergency contact. Our enemy could be the flood current at the Furber Strait, the ebb current at the entrance of the Squamscott river, a gust of 15 mile/hour, and inexperience around this area. Mother Nature gave us another lesson that she is not that predictable. A shower started in the morning as we were on the way to the launching point at the Adams Point. The Water temperature was lower 40s, and the air temperature was about upper 40s. Chilled and soaked with the rain and wind, we heisted to put the kayaks into the gloomy water. While everyone has their wetsuits, one of us took flip-flops to fight against the weather (he then solved the problem by wrapping two garbage bags on his feet!). We waited until the rain ceased, and the wind dropped to 5 mile/hour, form my unseasoned evaluation. It was 11:40 AM, one hour before the Furber Start we were facing reached its slack water at 12:49 PM. We paddled south 1000 feet to the South of the Adams Point, then crossed the Furber Straight to the Thomas Point at the Great Bay National Wildlife Refuge (0.5 mile). The rocks are pretty squared and sharp along the Point. We continued to the south for another 0.8 mile, and landed at the Woodman Point. We spent an hour here for a lunch to get some energy to the cold and damp. Then we circled the Nannie Island—just a few trees above the bushes on a patch of rocks and earth. As we paddled closer, a snowy owl took off silently heading to the west. It could be the last time we saw a snowy owl in this season, as it will migrate up north as weather getting warmer. The next one mile on open water was from the Nannie Island to the Fabyan Point. Then we traveled along the bay shore to the Pierce Point. Many cormorants were resting with a few nests on the rocks. The breeding season was coming soon. On the trees on the shore, we spotted a few bald eagles, and some birds of prey looked like ospreys. The Winnecut River at the Southeast point of the bay was crossed calmly. Flocks of grants and Canada geese were observed here. After a two-mile paddling from the Pierce Point, we reached the entrance of the Squamscott River at 3: 30 PM. The ca. 1.5-mile-wide river entrance is needed to be paid a lot attention to. The ebb current would reach its highest speed at Great Bay entrance at 3:50 PM, indicating a strong current may push us to the direction of the Furber Straight two miles away from here. The confluence of the Squamscott River and Lamprey River could make the current more complicated at the middle of the entrance. Our plan was to paddle along the river bank to observe the current before making a decision to cross the river. During the crossing, we would paddle close and act as a team. As we were back to the water and paddled into the river, one of our members at the sweep position did feel a current pushing him to the open water. Then he decided to follow the current without notifying us. When the rest of us noticed, he was about 800 feet away from us. Three of us found the current was not strong and controllable, then we carefully followed him. It took us about 25 minutes to cross the entrance of the two rivers. The rest of trip was a 3-mile trip along the west coast. As we were a little tired on the cold water, the ebb current made the paddling back north much easier. A clear sky and a late-afternoon sun added a happy ending for the 5-hour and 12-mile adventure on Great Bay.
  9. Many thanks to Scott, Peter, Suz, and Rick for organizing and tutoring the amazing workshop. Thanks to other NSPN paddlers who shared their valuable experience and stories. Seakaying need knowledge, experience and team work as other great outdoor activities. I am so glad to learn much more in the two CAM workshops than other kayaking events in the past few years. Cannot be more fascinated to have a class at the New England Aquarium, thanks, Peter!
  10. Warren, So glad you like it. I would love to visit MITA islands and try kayak camping! My limited Maine experience includes a solo trip from the Deer Isle to the Isle Au Haut and back, and a paddling from Thomas Bay along Sebascodegan island to the Basin and back with a few friends. Never did island camping in Maine. Can’t wait to learn more and have trips with NSPN! Jonathan
  11. Glad you like it, Blaine! Will keep reporting following trips!
  12. Thanks Cathy! Partially follow the trip plan we worked together at the class, I really enjoyed the learning process in the wild and had lots of fun!
  13. It has been quite a long time since my last paddling five month ago. This year the winter lasts too long, reluctant to give way to spring. As the low temperature just above freezing, I can’t wait to plan for a new adventure, using the knowledge I got from the CAM Workshop on trip planning. Kurt is an ardent outdoor organizer and a friend of mine for a couple of years. We decided to paddle the Plumb Island Sound on Saturday, March 29. This is the first time we would explore the Northern part of the sound through the Plum Island River. The river is a tidal river flowing over a huge salt water marsh and can only be fully accessed at high tides. The original plan was to paddle through the river from the Sawyer’s Island to the Basin at the Newburyport. It took a much longer time to get everything ready before jumping into water. We put in our kayaks at 10:30 AM, an hour later than our plan. The high tide time was 10:58 AM at the Merrimack River Entrance and 11: 00 AM at the Plum Island South. The water was pouring into the sound from both entrances and water level was still rising. Nothing can compare the feeling of being back to the sea again. The wind speed was minimum, the water temperature 30s and air temperature 40s. As we paddled through the mud river mouth, the plum island sound opened in front of us. While the high tide covers most of the contours I could remember form previous trips, the two osprey nests still stood on the right bank of the river. We were late from our schedule, and always distracted by the animals we encountered. At the mouth of the Parker River, 4-5 harbor seals promptly jumped into the water from a sand bar on a flooded island. Seals are timid but curious animals. They kept floating to the surface and watching us with a great wariness. The salt water marshes are full of nutrients to attract a large variety of water fowls. Black-backed gulls, Canada geese, GBHs, snowy herons, etc… were perching and foraging on the grassland. We spotted a snowy owl three times, perching on different posts near the water. At the mouth of the Mud River, four long-tailed ducks took a flight together with their distinctive long tails. Confused by a labyrinth of passages and creeks, we could not locate us well from the chart and GPS. Finally we arrived the bridge at 12:30 PM, the river just moved at a fast speed beneath the bridge, draining out of a huge mass of water from the marshes to the rest part of river through this narrow passage. Considering the current will reach its highest speed at 13:59 PM at the entrance of the Merrimack River, where the two rivers converge, we might have a hard time to paddle back against the current. We decided to turn back. The whole paddling lasted 4 hours and we drove back as the late-afternoon wind and rain picked up. I was glad to use the knowledge form the workshop, and made a right decision to turn back without insisting our previous plan. Luckily we had not made the rain on the sea, and come back dry with a great joyfulness of the first paddling adventure of this year.
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