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Joseph Berkovitz

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About Joseph Berkovitz

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  • Birthday 09/03/1959

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    Marblehead, MA

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  1. Interesting. I'll have to make it out there to Misery to see if I can find them. Hope you all had fun yesterday! In California goats are used quite a lot to keep vegetation under control for fire prevention, you see them up on the ridges in open spaces. Where we were staying near San Pablo Bay, one day we saw a big animal truck filled with goats from a company called "Goats R Us" driving around. Later we saw the same company's herds while hiking around my daughter's place. There was a goatherd living up there with the goats, too, with a couple of dogs to help manage the goats. Cheaper than machinery, and cuter.
  2. I don't think your point is really wrong... it's only, I don't think neoprene gloves are permeable on purpose like a wetsuit. I find most (undamaged) neoprene gloves to be quite waterproof, in terms of the barrier aspect of the glove. With a fresh pair of neoprene gloves on, my hands stay completely dry even when immersed up to the wrists. The wrist seam is another story though. With any waterproof glove, whether neoprene or latex or [insert miracle textile here], some water eventually seems to get in around the wrist opening. For me, that happens mostly when swimming or when taking the glove off and putting it back on again. At that point the glove does indeed act like a wetsuit. The small amount of water trapped inside warms up to your hand, assuming your hand wasn't cold in the first place. But if your hand has gotten cold again in the meantime, forget it. At that point only a warm dry glove will do to make things better quickly.
  3. @pitt16 I similarly find bare hands in pogies do work great. However if I wind up swimming in 40-something water, my hand will turn into an inoperable claw within a minute. Which is the main reason why I wear gloves. People have gotten in big trouble simply from being unable to grab deck lines after a brief cold water swim. Prudence recently gave me a pair of those latex dipped fishing gloves on this weekends trip, and they were great until I had to put them back on after lunch. I think 2nd-pair-in-drysuit is a good way to go.
  4. Interesting - thanks for sharing this! I saw an MFA show around 5 years ago that featured a lot of Hokusai's work, including some of the actual woodblocks used to print it. They displayed the Great Wave print in various stages, accumulating the different colors from different blocks. examining the specific inks that were used.
  5. Do you ever wonder what just the US Coast Guard does when they receive a Channel 16 Mayday call? Or how they go about looking for someone out there in trouble, if they don't know exactly where they are? How do they decide when to stop looking for someone because they're probably no longer alive? All you ever wanted to know about this, and much more, can be found here: https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/CG-5R/manuals/COMDTINST M16130.2F.pdf It's a bit much to read cover to cover, but it gives a lot of insight into how much careful process, planning and execution is applied to keeping us all safe on the water. Interesting fodder for reading and discussion, along with a copy of Deep Trouble. In the meantime, here's a summary of key points provided by a USCG employee who is active in the Bay Area kayaking community:
  6. This is report on a paddle I did on Sunday in California with a couple of members of the Bay Area Sea Kayakers. Sorry about the formatting! The links go out to specific pictures and videos in Google Photos, which give a much better idea of the area than my writeup. Here's just one pic as a teaser though: Point Reyes: Drakes Beach to Pt. Reyes Light People: me, Franca Cioria, Damon Paxt Launch: 10:20; Land: 14:50 Conditions: Sunny, air 50 F, water 52 F, swell 5 ft @ 13 s WNW Tides: 2020/11/29 Sun 09:20 AM 6.04 H 2020/11/29 Sun 4:34 PM -0.23 L Distance: 11.4 nm Track: https://www.gaiagps.com/datasummary/track/9cbc6b96c6b14955c1b37cce398b43c1/?layer=gaianoaarnc Picture Album: https://photos.app.goo.gl/ji8v3WsLKeCpvFZA9 This was one of the most scenic trips I’ve ever paddled anywhere. Franca’s general idea was to launch from the well-protected Drakes Beach and paddle out to Chimney Rock at the east end of the 600-foot-high Point Reyes Headlands, then along the length of the headlands to the lighthouse. This is one of the most exposed places on the entire California coastline and is rarely a sane place to paddle because of the heavy swell, wind and fog that often occurs there. Yet for a couple of days we had a great weather window, so we took advantage of it. 10:15: The launch off Drakes was smooth and the ocean glassy except for the 3-foot dumping break right in front of us. Fortunately the very long period made it easy to time our entry and paddle past the break. The only challenge was picking a launch point without too much longshore swash and waiting for a big enough wave to seal launch the boats. Then we had a long calm paddle out to near Chimney Rock. As we paddled, many surf scoters were flying away from us with their distinctive whoop-whoop wingbeats. Video 11:00. Just inside of Chimney Rock there were coves with elephant and harbor seals hauling out. We encountered a sea lion while we debated whether to go on the inside or outside passage. (The inside was shallow and dicey and outside swell was breaking through—we took the outside as the water was still high enough that the shoals would probably not be an issue.) 11:15 A long traverse of the incredibly dramatic headlands to the lighthouse, about 3 nm. Swell kept wrapping in towards us, mostly very graceful and long 3-4 footers but occasional 6-foot monsters thrown in so we needed to be careful about reading rocks and ledges. The current was against us on the way out, probably about 0.25 kt at most judging from the difference in speed on the GPS track. At the beginning of the outside trek I indulged in some rock gardening as there were many deep slots and occasional tunnels in the tall rock ribs sticking out of the ocean. Along the way we encountered a sea lion cove and viewed the top of an underwater kelp forest. 12:25. We arrived at the lighthouse on its high bluff. Just before the lighthouse the wind picked up hugely as we neared the end of our lee and the undiluted western swell began to hit various points and kick up huge spray. The light is no longer in use and curtains are up to protect the lens; the actual light is a rather low-profile LED affair that is hardly seen in the daytime. We went a bit beyond the point to gain a view down the west side of Point Reyes towards Tomales Point and Bodega Bay about 10 miles away. Out here the ocean was much rougher with some chop on top of the swell. We turned around. 1:30 we arrived back at Chimney Rock. On the return trip the swell seemed to be lessened although there were occasional big sets recurring. Here though because of the lower water level, the shoal extending east from Chimney Rock was triggering a line of breakers. We waited in front of the rock for a bit, observing and wondering what the best way back inside might be. To clear the shoals entirely would require a half-mile detour towards the G “1” whistle buoy. There appeared to be some gaps but we would need to scout them carefully. The area just adjacent to Chimney Rock seemed itself to be a gap of sorts, but we saw that the bigger waves were definitely breaking in that area. Damon pulled a little bit ahead to take a closer look while I suggested that we wait for one of the really big sets, then quickly punch through in a following lull. At that exact moment Franca yelled “outside” as one of the huge sets arrived. I did wonder if we were toast for a quick moment, but the approaching wave stood down slightly as it approached the rock and we easily backpaddled over it. I hoped Damon was OK, but after the wave approach he had backed towards our safer position again. Another two monsters roared through. Clearly that would not have been a moment to punch around the rock, but after the third wave I looked back and saw nothing coming for a distance. “Let’s go!” We very purposefully rounded the rock. Just after we came around some waves did come through but they would have been quite rideable. 1:35-2:00. A chilly but gorgeous lunch break on a tiny pocket beach just inside of the rock as we desperately needed food. We shared the beach with some elephant and harbor seals at the other end — we landed in the opposite corner to avoid disturbing them. They did not seem to care and a large rock hid us from their view. Damon found some cool looking sea anemones. 2:55. We landed at Drakes in the building NW wind. The dump was much smaller on our return, though. A perfect wild California paddle.
  7. This is the material what I’ve found to work really well for me under a drysuit: https://www.terramarsports.com/collections/mens-heritage-series/products/2-layer-authentic-thermal-crew-w8359 This Terramar 2.0 stuff is sort of on the cusp between fleece and the thinner polypro typE garments. It is on the thinner side yet has some fleece like loft for insulation and does not develop the sticky sweaty feel Of polypro but is soft and a little absorbent. On the colder days I add a thin wool layer on top. And... much cheaper than kokatat
  8. Well, the weather last week was kind of a bust, but this week looks more solid despite a windy start. In fact, Wednesday looks like the best day this week, at least until the weekend rolls around (which currently looks glorious). So, without further ado: this week's Wednesday Lunch Paddle is on November 4, 2020. We will meet at 9.00 am at Niles Beach in East Gloucester for a 9.30 am launch time. Location: https://goo.gl/maps/2dJC3etT4tUBFLeM6 in Avalonia Parking: There should be plenty of marked spaces right along the beach front. Do not worry about the "residents only" signs as these do not apply off-season (there is another sign explaining this, it's just in an obscure location). Registration: To attend, you must register using this form which will also add your information to the float plan: https://forms.gle/wLhreDzwKuBKCR9u8 You must be a paid-up NSPN member to join this trip. Your signup information will only be shared with other participants. Covid-19 paddling: on this trip we will strictly observe social distancing and MA state recreational boating guidelines for the pandemic. Please research and respect all regulations that apply at the time of the paddle. In particular, we will stay at least 6 feet apart, minimize sharing docks and ramps with others, and wear face masks while off the water in public use areas. We also employ an online waiver to avoid passing around a physical piece of paper. Predictions: Variable winds less than 5 kt becoming S 10-12 kt in the afternoon. Mostly sunny, air temps hitting 50 F, water temps mid 50s. Seas around 2 ft @ 10 seconds. Gloucester Harbor tides: Date Day of the Week Time (LST/LDT) Predicted (ft) High/Low 2020/11/04 Wed 07:06 AM 1.47 L 2020/11/04 Wed 1:17 PM 9.14 H 2020/11/04 Wed 7:39 PM 0.60 L When/what: We will meet at 9.00 am and launch at 9.30 am sharp. One suggestion is to head west out of the harbor past Normans Woe and Rafes Chasm to an eventual lunch landing on Black Beach or Kettle Island. This trip doesn't have a specific level: we'll determine the route based on who shows up, what people want to do, and what the environment wants to do. All properly equipped members are welcome: please bring boats with rigged deck lines, bulkheads, spray skirts, and dress for immersion. If you're not sure you have a safe vessel, please get in touch with us and ask. NOTE: The Wednesday Lunch Paddles are cooperative adventures, not guided trips. 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. We encourage paddlers to make their own independent decision about their comfort level with conditions at the time of the paddle. Please PM me if you have questions or if you haven’t paddled with me or Bob before. Hope to see you there!
  9. Yes we are just working out a plan this am. Will post later today
  10. Regrettably I am not in, although I totally want to be. We have a long standing social thing that afternoon. Have fun!
  11. Just to eliminate any suspense or concern on the part of others, I have now officially tested negative -- I hope the folks today had some fun in what turned out to be cold and rainy weather!
  12. Due to a possible (though pretty unlikely) Covid exposure I am not going on this trip today although others may be. My situation should be resolved in a day or two by a test result. as for next week, sure, if the weather looks promising there will be another trip.
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