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Joseph Berkovitz

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    Marblehead, MA
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  1. The tests are charged for these days. I was doing the periodic service club thing for a while, like David, but I seem to need yearly replacements (is it my skin chemistry?) so it’s become too expensive. Now I have all the repair stuff at home for gaskets and patches and I’m just doing the testing and repairs myself.
  2. People do not seem to be using the calendar to sign up. If you’re interested here is the link to the calendar entry: https://www.nspn.org/forum/calendar/event/1376-full-moon-paddle-plus-more/
  3. I couldn't believe it when I saw geologist Dyk Eusden's Zoom presentation last year for MITA. A geologist who investigates sites by... sea kayaking? Too good to be true! I immediately knew there was a future NSPN trip in the making, assuming Dyk was willing to come on board. Fortunately Dyk agreed readily to do the trip with NSPN, and it just took place this last Saturday and Sunday. Besides Dyk (who is a retired geology professor from Bates College and an expert on Maine coastal geology) we had myself, co-organizer Janet Lorang, Beth Sangree, Cath Kimball, Dana Siegall, Shari Galant, Bob Levine, Ricardo Caivano, and Steph Golmon. The goal was to do some hands-on learning by making geological maps of the NE tip of the island, preceded and followed by some explanation from Dyk. The original trip plan called for Dyk and the entire group to camp over Saturday night on Little Whaleboat and E. Gosling, with geology activities Saturday daytime and Sunday morning followed by some pleasure paddling on Sunday afternoon, with some returning home Saturday, others camping out on Sunday night too. This plan had to be curtailed when Sunday morning's forecast called for the sudden onset 20+ kt NNE winds gusting to over 30 kt. We would have to get Dyk and a few others back to the launch by the end of Saturday, so our session was shorter than called for. However, it worked out great anyway. Saturday's weather was perfect as we paddled east from Cousins towards our destination. Dyk is the smiling guy in the yellow kayak nearest the camera: Arriving at Little Whaleboat, we were initiated by Dyk into the geologic history of the area. I won't go into all the science here... but... let's just say that hundreds of millions of years ago there were some ancient volcanoes (ash fell and collected) and some silty rivers (mud collected). All these layers of ash and silt wound up deep underground where they got cooked and melted and deformed. They also got squished (by the same plate collision that created the Appalachians) and stretched and distorted by a fault called the Norumbega, not too dissimilar from the West Coast's modern-day San Andreas Fault. Cracks opened up from time to time and filled up with other kinds of molten rocks that then solidified. Finally millions of years of erosion eventually exposed this underground stuff in what is now Casco Bay. Below Dyk is pointing out the boundary between some gniess (cooked/melted ash falls) and a basalt dike (where Ricardo is standing): Dyk showed us how to measure the angles where rock boundaries come together: People asked LOTS of amazing questions and Dyk did a tremendous job of answering them all in language we could mostly understand. The sun was out a lot of the time and it was calm and pretty warm. Good times and good science! At the end of the day our brains were pretty tired. Dyk and 4 paddlers went back to Cousins (unfortunately Janet was one of them). 5 paddlers including yours truly, Ricardo, Dana, Beth and Cath headed off to East Gosling. Gary York was also camping on the south side of the island and he came by to say hello. That night the wind ramped up just as predicted, howling through the early hours. It cooled off radically and we spent the morning in camp eating and drinking hot food and thinking about paddling, looking out at the weather. Eventually by the afternoon we decided to beat north into the wind and explore the upper reaches of Casco including a visit to the Helen and Walter Norton Preserve on Birch Island, expecting a nice downwind run back to camp before sunset. Only, the wind cheated us and died down once we reached the turnaround point. Oh well! It was nice to get out on the water after all! The camping finished with a near-perfect campfire on the south side of the island where we were completely sheltered from the breeze and could revel in the moonlight and the flames: : Monday morning was lovely, sunny and mostly calm as we broke camp and made our way back to Cousins Island at low water, threading through the sandbars near the bridge. A great trip!!! Thanks to everyone for making this happen, especially Dyk. It was great to have a paddle that allowed us to learn from an expert about the environment we journey in, and appreciate the planet more. J
  4. I would love to do this if it winds up not on the same date as the Little Whaleboat trip.
  5. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/sep/23/cyril-derreumaux-california-hawaii-kayak I was fortunate to meet Cyril a few years ago in SF at an event where he was fundraising. He finally made it! I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about this.
  6. Hi folks, I will be in Maine next week and unable to organize the final scheduled Wed. Lunch Paddle of this year. If anyone wants to step up and organize one, please do go ahead, and enjoy! Next year there will be more of them, I am sure. -Joe
  7. The people: Fred Goodman, Britta Magnuson, Joe Berkovitz, Mike Habich, David G Mercer, Ricardo Caivano, Bill Voss. The launch: Rockport Granite Pier. The tides: 08:58 am high 7.42 02:46 pm low 1.97 The journey: We launched just after 10 from the pier in clearing skies and mild temps. The forecast (which seemed to be holding) was for light NNW winds to switch over midday to S winds as high pressure passed overhead. So it seemed reasonable to head south and have a tailwind in both directions. Despite the sea state forecast having diminished since the trip was posted, there was ample wave energy with about 2 feet at 6 seconds. It seemed to me that there might also be a longer-period swell that emerged at odd moments to deliver a little surprise. So we played along the rocks at a relaxed pace down past Straitsmouth. Around this point the wind was dying down and Thacher looked inviting. We could see that the tours had ceased operating and the ramp looked empty. Off we went across the channel to Thacher, going around clockwise first, inspecting (and turning down) the waveswept beach at the southwest end and opting for the ramp. The ramp was a bit squiggly and slippery but it worked well enough, although the land/launch process was slow. As we arrived we said hello to two other well-equipped local paddlers who were just in the process of leaving. We had a nice lunch on the tables at the top of the ramp, looking out at the Rockport coast: Eventually we returned, passing around the outside of Straitsmouth and indulging in some very leisurely play in the occasional rock features in the diminishing swell. The south wind did not really get around to building and the air and water were both in the 60s. A drysuit was pleasant for me this day thanks to the gathering cloud cover in the afternoon. Thanks everyone for a beautiful day on the water! Please post pix if you have them. -J
  8. Let's WLP (it's now a verb)! This Wednesday on Sept. 21 let's launch from Rockport Granite Pier (Google maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/wcKibL4ABWToCR2U9). Please bring $12 in cash although parking may in fact be free — I don't remember if it's officially seasonal there. I will try and find out. Let's meet up no later than 9:30 am and depart at 10:00 am. Weather is supposed to be partly cloudy, high of 68ºF, NNW wind 5 to 8 kt dropping at midday becoming S in the afternoon. (The wind direction change is one reason for the choice of venue.) Seas 3-4 ft, so there may be some substantial swell. LT is at 2:46pm. Here's the registration link: https://forms.gle/cxbK3s7ysQUqTkCYA You can get tide/current information, charts and weather forecasts for the area here: https://coastalpaddling.com/42.66773/-70.62012/13?tides=y&date=202209211200 To join the trip you must be a paid-up NSPN member, and have signed the club participant waiver for this season. Your signup information will only be shared with other members on the trip. Covid-19 paddling: this trip requires paddlers to be vaccinated/boosted against Covid-19 and symptom-free, as rescues or first aid may require close physical contact. Trip level: WLPs do not have a specific level. All properly equipped members are welcome: please bring boats with rigged deck lines, bulkheads, spray skirts, and dress for immersion. For this trip a helmet is recommended also. NOTE: The Wednesday Lunch Paddles are cooperative adventures, not guided trips. We encourage paddlers to make their own independent decision about their comfort level with conditions at the time of the paddle. Each participant is responsible for her/his own safety. Don’t assume the trip initiators are smarter, stronger, better at rough water, more attractive, or more skilled paddlers than you are. For more information, see this description of our trip philosophy from the NSPN web site. Please PM me if you have questions or if you haven’t paddled with me before. Hope to see you there! Joe Berkovitz
  9. Yes, that’s the ENC version coastalpaddling already uses. However it’s still quite different from the raster charts in many smaller details - I assumed perhaps wrongly that these were the differences that Ed was referring to. either way, in the long run, we’re not getting the old charts back, folks! But at least the data is still free, not like in many countries.
  10. Eel- In theory one could legally make electronic charts from that data that look like anything at all. But noaa doesn’t have a big incentive to preserve the legacy symbols. What they are doing is to make the new charts look like the electronic displays used in commercial nav equipment around the world. So it wouldn’t be hijacking to use a different symbol set but it would be a large effort with uncertain reward since paper charts aren’t used by “big maritime” anymore.
  11. You can get all the traditional NOAA charts from MA to ME on my site coastalpaddling.com (as well as the new ones) along with printable PDFs, weather, tides and basic route planning. I have long since given up on Gaia and use the Navionics app for GPS tracking. Its charts are not pretty but they work, unlike Gaia’s which simply don’t show sufficient detail. In the long run though: the old charts will eventually become nonviable due to inaccuracy so don’t get too emotionally attached to them. Hopefully NOAA will improve the new electronic ones before that happens.
  12. Interesting! I had heard that there was a GWS spotted at Nahant not long ago. Not surprising that they would be around though with the warm water and the seal population... A few years back David Mercer and I saw a 6+ foot shark jump out of the water in Sandy Bay right next to us. Surprise!!! We were too shocked to notice what it even looked like. When I was up in Campobello with NSPN folks a few weeks ago, some people in a powerboat told us they had seen "a shark following you". Could be true, sure. On the other hand we had seen several ocean sunfish recently nearby, flopping their fins around. Either way... what were we gonna do? Take evasive measures? Keep on paddling... Joe
  13. Current FC is for winds W 14 kt gusting to 23 kt. Maybe let’s keep an eye on this since that stretch of coast doesn’t offer much lee in those conditions. https://marine.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-70.78680&lat=42.54486#.YyCAhiUpAlR
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