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Joseph Berkovitz

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Everything posted by Joseph Berkovitz

  1. How odd, I didn’t even notice the person wasn’t wearing a PFD. Yes, a big mistake, but I still applaud some coverage that brings more attention to the sport and dispels some misconceptions about what it’s about physically. It’s not a perfect article but better than many. I don’t know if the photo caption originally said this when the article came out, but it now reads: “ Serious kayak racers generally don’t wear life vests, but recreational paddlers should always do so. Credit... ” I guess they’re trying to fix this and don’t have another photo on hand…
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/22/well/move/kayak-paddle-exercise.html A surprisingly decent article on kayaking as exercise in the major print media - even to the point of including some reasonable starter tips on forward and sweep strokes.
  3. It might be good to think about drumming up some wing paddle loaners. I know there are a fair few people in the club who have wings for use with their sea kayaks. the one time I tried a surfski I used a Cyprus first and then an Epic wing paddle. There was no comparison, they were completely different experiences. The wing worked so much better with the ski.
  4. I regret to announce that Bob and I will not be able to organize the WLP for the next 2 weeks due to travel and family plans. Lunch and paddling and Wednesdays will resume in combination on or around July 6.
  5. I forgot to mention that we briefly met up with Nancy at lunchtime - Nancy I’m glad you had a good day after all the aggravation! ALSO - many many oystercatchers were seen, I should have mentioned. They really like Snake Island.
  6. As advertised, we set out this morning around 10:20 from Winthrop Boat Launch to visit Belle Isle Marsh, where “we” means myself, Jane Cobb, Ricardo Caivano and Sue Hriciga. Nancy hill was at the launch but due to a surprise encounter with the severe US Open traffic she decided to visit the marsh on foot so she could return home early. The sun overhead was creating an unusual triple halo in the high clouds: with this auspicious start we set out around Snake Island to view the narrow and shallow entrance to its lagoon at mid-tide. High water not being until 12:45 or so, the entrance was impassable but we could see that mysterious terrain lay within! we forged on around the perimeter of Logan. Mercifully the east wind meant that the landing path was over the city and the takeoff path was just south of our put-in, increasingly distant as we paddled on. with The entire airport downwind from us, we watched planes land and taxi in eerie silence with only the sounds of birds and paddles splashing. Right after we entered the marsh under a bridge with the flood current Ben Rechel caught up with us. He had arrived too late to launch with us but sans coordination (Ben apparently thought he heard us hailing him on VHF, but none of us had) he managed to launch from a closer point and rendezvous with perfect timing. we explored the perimeter of the marsh in a highly inefficient irregular and satisfying way, prowling down a number of dead end channels. I talked to a couple of locals who were paddling sit on tops near us. There are lots of boardwalks and trails running around the place used by locals. The east side of the marsh goes right up to the back of Short Beach in Winthrop but there is no access from the marsh to cross the road to the beach. we doubled back to the observation point on the west side of the marsh which is also accessible by car. A very beautiful and peaceful place for our lunch and postprandial stroll. It was now 1 and we left the marsh on the ebb, dropping off Ben on the way back to Snake Island. The entrance to Snake’s lagoon was draining once again when we got there, but it was just barely possible to fight through the current and shallows and Ricardo and I made it in. It is a little quiet oasis of birds and shrubs and trees inside: birds I observed included blue heron, tree swallows, redwing blackbirds, snowy egret, great egret, common tern, and of course many seagulls. this was a truly enjoyable trip and we should do it again on an even higher tide if possible! Thanks everyone and please add your pictures.
  7. We're going off-script this week! Our June 15 Wednesday Lunch Paddle features an exploration of the City of Boston's only remaining salt marsh, Belle Isle Marsh, and the unique harbor island of Snake Island with its interior lagoon. Both are important bird habitats and feature egrets, ibis, herons and more. For my part, I've never visited either location although I go right past them often. This is not really a sea kayaking trip: it is a protected saltwater paddle, great for anyone at any level. Forecast is sunny, temps in the 60s with easterly wind 8-kt. High water is around 12:45pm which should be perfect for exploring this place. The east wind will hopefully put most Logan air traffic on the 09-27 runway to our south. We will meet at Winthrop Boat Launch at 10 am and depart at 10:30. We will probably visit the marsh first on the flood, then hit Snake Island post-lunch at high tide. Interested? Please sign up here: https://forms.gle/DjLKWFgvuwNHzkZr7 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 against Covid-19 and symptom-free per request of the trip organizers, 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. 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 one of us if you have questions or if you haven’t paddled with us before. Hope to see you there! Joe Berkovitz & Bob Levine
  8. @DM2787 Others have already provided terrific detail here. I just want to second Ed’s sage advice that if you haven’t paddled this area before, there are challenges that may not be familiar if your home base is the Hudson. As Ed said, conditions can change abruptly in a short distance or a short time, from calm and placid to extremely rough. So the option of contacting Nate Hanson (who is Pinniped) to arrange a day trip sounds like a good one; he’s a superb paddler, guide, instructor and human being all rolled into one.
  9. Well we actually had a very nice time. We launched just after the last of the showers and headed from fisherman’s to egg rock to East point for our lunch spot. It was windy at first although my impression was that it was more SW becoming W. It was not super fast paddling into the wind but it was very enjoyable as the day was nice.The sun came out and the wind began to moderate as the day went on. at the end Bill delivered an impromptu seminar on how to empty a skin on frame kayak in an assisted rescue. It is challenging! You have to lift the boat straight up, slowly, while it is on edge, then flip it back into its bottom.
  10. I plan on attending the paddle but I would rather not commit to a group until we’re on the beach and see who’s there and what’s happening that day. So consider this a “nondenominational” signup. have plans later in the day so I won’t be attending the potluck, at least not for long
  11. Here comes an instant replay of last week's paddle plan, since there were few takers in the chilly weather! This week may be a little wobbly too as regards the weather... Predictions and Plan: The plan is to meet at Fishermans Beach in Swampscott at 11:00 am on Wed. June 8, 2022, planning to launch at 11:30 am and head south towards Nahant where we can paddle out to East Point for lunch, mostly in the lee of the cliffs. (We're starting later than usual this week.) The forecast currently calls for mix of showers/sun with a chance of T-storms. Temps 60-65 F, seas around 2 ft, wind S around 15 kt. Yup, it will be windy! But we will have some protection and head into the wind at the start, to have it at our back later. Registration: To attend, please fill out this form. We will cancel the paddle and notify registrants if the T-storm forecast becomes a problem. 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 against Covid-19 and symptom-free per request of the trip organizers, 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. 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!
  12. While one doesn’t need a compass rose, it does provide something useful beyond noting what the numeric variation is. I’ve found that for many map users the rose serves as a reference for the visual angle of a magnetic bearing - it shows directly what it looks like. And of course there are procedures for using it to convert between true and magnetic that don’t involve adding or subtracting, which for some people is challenging or error prone. (Personally I do the math but I’m facile with numbers!)
  13. The roses in the new NOAA POD tool are a work in progress. It is virtually impossible to control where and how they appear. At the moment I think it’s best to become adept at adding or subtracting 15 degrees as needed when calculating bearings using these charts. Mnemonic: Magnetic is More in Massachusetts and Maine. Another choice which is graphically easier than creating your own compass roses is to overlay an array of vertical lines oriented to magnetic north.
  14. I added my own single cross bungee right behind the cockpit. This allows the helmet to attach securely to either of the bungees just in front of the rear hatch. helmet goes here: looks like this in action:
  15. Yesterday Mike Habich, Sue Hriciga, Prudence Baxter, Jody Harris, Barbara Ryan, Dan Foster and I (Joe Berkovitz) paddled from Lanes to Rockport. And back to Lanes, too, if you were wondering about that. The weather was beautiful and sunny, temp maybe around 60 F although it felt warmer to me. On the initial leg we had very little wind until we rounded Halibut Point, after which we had a 5-8 kt headwind out of the south. Some of us hugged the coast and rocks in the modest swell while others stayed further offshore. We all moved at a relaxed, exploratory pace enjoying the beautiful conditions and the soft air and light. Eventually we reached Rockport and landed at our usual place, below a small parking lot on Bearskin Neck. Immediately a young guy appeared above us in the parking lot and politely—and perhaps a bit apologetically—explained that we were on private property and would not be able to land there. We protested, equally politely, that we'd been landing there for some years now, but he said he was from the adjacent kayak rental place and it was not up to him: the policy was due to the owners of the adjacent building (the Lauri Kaihlanen Gallery) and that someone from there might come out and yell at us. Barb gamely offered that she knew the owner of the kayak shop... but it turned out that the kayak shop had been sold recently and had a new owner. Nice try! Some of us wished to stay and risk the ire of the property owner, but we could not access the rest of the town (ice cream, bathrooms... did I mention ice cream?) without going right next to the owner's building through a gate clearly marked PRIVATE NO TRESPASSING PRIVATE PRIVATE PRIVATE etc. I made myself slightly unpopular by suggesting we cave in and land at the public boat ramp, which we did. Below is a picture of Rockport Harbor with the forbidden landing and the public landing marked appropriately: The public landing is a broken down old concrete ramp in a state of extreme disrepair that at low tide is not usable by any wheeled vehicle and for that matter is barely walkable. Perfect for a bunch of kayaks on a pre-season day: we could leave our boats there without inconveniencing anyone. Off we went to enjoy the as-yet sparsely touristed environs of Rockport. Sadly the beloved Helmut's Strudel was "temporarily closed for the season" (perhaps this amounts to abuse of the word "temporarily") for reasons of staffing shortages and supply chain problems. Mike wondered aloud about the supply chain for strudel. However, a workable ice cream stand was found by some to provide a good nutritional supplement to our packaged lunches. Back we went through Sandy Bay, now with a strengthening tailwind that had turned a bit more to a quartering SE. Again around Halibut and back to Lanes. Approaching Lanes at low tide we entered an area with gently pouring pour-overs over seaweed-cushioned rocks. We noted how bright the colors were, especially the verdant sea-lettuce glowing through the shallow water. We had a nice play session there for another 30 minutes, and then returned to Lanes. A beautiful and rejuvenating paddle with friends on a late spring day. Not much more I could ask for... ...except some photos from the trip. If anyone has some, please post!
  16. Hi Tom, The answer depends on what the wind weather is doing that day. You can find a list of many good locations here: https://www.nspn.org/put-in-locations/ I'd suggest any of the Annisquam River locations listed under Gloucester in the list above. However if the weather is nice the river can be jammed up with powerboats. There will be some current. The tide will also be quite low in the morning on those dates and the river features some tidal flats in some places. Barring strong wind or swell out of the south I think another good option that is fairly sheltered from ocean conditions is Pavilion Beach in Gloucester which is a small launch-friendly sand beach right on the harbor in the center of town and parking is not too hard if you get there early. There is significant boat traffic to take care with nearby, but away from the canal and the inner harbor, the shoreline is pretty quiet. If it's nice weather on a Sunday the beach lot will get parked up fast although you can park on the street. Weather forecast is here: https://marine.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-70.66809&lat=42.59505#.Yo0v_pPMKDU Tides are here: https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/noaatidepredictions.html?id=8441571&units=standard&bdate=20220605&edate=20220606&timezone=LST/LDT&clock=12hour&datum=MLLW&interval=hilo&action=dailychart Hope this helps and hope to see you around.
  17. We will meet at 9:00 am (yes, this is earlier than last week!) and launch promptly at 9:30 am. We are launching from Lanes Cove in Gloucester MA at the Andrews Street state-owned lot: https://goo.gl/maps/rUPYUwnVD8q6WNeJA Registration: To attend, please fill out this registration form: https://forms.gle/wuyFNv7nrCHUqtoW8 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. Predictions and Plan: It looks like a very nice morning. NOAA Forecast is light winds becoming SE 8-12 kt around midday (the reason for the somewhat earlier launch). Sunny with 2 ft seas, air 60 F, water 50-55 F. Rockport tides: 2022/05/25 Wed 01:57 AM 0.62 L 2022/05/25 Wed 08:13 AM 9.07 H 2022/05/25 Wed 2:22 PM 0.29 L 2022/05/25 Wed 8:46 PM 9.42 H A suggested plan as of this moment is to paddle north and east around Halibut Point to Rockport for lunch. If the forecast holds we will have a tailwind on the way back and some lee after we round Halibut on the return. If the forecast doesn't hold, we could go south from Lanes instead. Covid-19 paddling: this trip requires paddlers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 per request of the trip organizers, 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. 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!
  18. Hi Julia (and any other interested folks) You can get on the waiting list by filling out the form at the top of this thread where it says how to get on the waitlist. That way we have all your info. Best, Joe
  19. I have no idea what the name of Bill’s boat is, it’s the one I’ve always seen him paddling… it has some age on it. I believe a substantial part of the leaving-in-dust action may be due to Bill himself!
  20. As it happened, the continuing prospect of 15 kt NE winds and 6-8 foot swells diminished this WLP’s attendance to 3 people: Bill Voss, Bob Levine and myself. Launching in Manchester Harbor at 10:45 or so (2 plus hours past HW) and heading west to Misery Island, we did avoid the bigger waves, but did not entirely dodge the wind. And we were treated to mild temps and bright Sun as befits spring. Skirting a large marine construction project at the mouth of the harbor (which leaves something like a 20 foot wide nav channel) we headed south to explore the inside of the ledges near Ram Island. Leaving the harbor we immediately noticed the swell - under 1 foot, but in an area where normally there is almost none. the gaps in the ledges that open onto Salem Sound revealed a violent picture of the sea state outside: huge swells breaking on the shallows sending cascades of foam and turbulent water through the openings. It was possible to safely approach some of these openings and watch the action. There was enough wave energy that a counter current was flooding in and creating a little tide race with the wind chop in the bay. From there we headed west to Great Misery intending to stop at Cocktail Cove on the inside which we had already scouted from West beach as being landable. We moved inshore a bit to maintain some protection from the open waters; even so there was a section north of Saulli Rock where the swells were standing up pretty high—but not breaking. So we continued to Cocktail Cove. It was calm and at least partly sheltered from the wind. Bill stopped for a quick break. Then we decided to go around the lee side of the island to see the Misery Gut and perhaps find a better spot along the way. The west side of Misery was almost idyllic: no wind, low swells. We passed a couple of nice beaches and continued to the gut. The beaches there were landable but more windy and exposed so after a brief excursion outside Little Misery to check out the conditions again (big non-breaking swells, very windy) we headed back to idyllic beach #2 for our warm sunny lunch spot. Post lunch it was heading back straight into the wind to gain some lee from the shore, as Bill took off in his skin-on-frame boat leaving me in the dust. Along the shore it was less windy but needed balancing between avoiding breakers and staying in the lee. Finally back to Manchester at 2:10. Great paddle!
  21. if it would help to have a Marblehead resident talk to them, I'm happy to do that.
  22. Here we go with the first WLP of the year! This week's Wednesday Lunch Paddle is on Wed, May 11. We will meet at 10:00 am and launch promptly at 10:30 am. The venue is still being decided but will be somewhere on the south side of Cape Ann, probably in Beverly or Manchester. Register if you want to go and we'll update you tomorrow when we have a firmer plan. Registration: To attend, please register using this form which will also add your information to the float plan: https://forms.gle/2StSBbVSzL8FFSh46 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. Predictions and Plan: The big picture for early this week is sustained NE winds caused by a Mid-Atlantic storm. The storm itself is forecast to stay well south of us and move further away, but the NE flow covers a huge swath of the Atlantic to our east, so that means big swell - 5-6 feet @ 9 sec in open waters. Local winds on Wed are predicted to be in the 10-15 kt range. Temps 45-55 F, rain ending early in the morning with some sun possible. The end of the week is much warmer, but this is a WLP and Wednesday is the only day that works for both of us this week. Our plan is to launch in a sheltered location with some lee from the wind and protection from the swell so that we can get out on the water safely. After that we will go where the tastes and comfort level of the group dictate. NOAA point forecast link: https://marine.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-70.83217&lat=42.51042#.YnkEl5PMKDV Tides (Salem Harbor): 2022/05/11 Wed 07:55 AM 8.34 H 2022/05/11 Wed 2:09 PM 1.03 L 2022/05/11 Wed 8:29 PM 8.38 H Covid-19 paddling: this trip requires paddlers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 per request of the trip organizers, 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. 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 or Bob before. Hope to see you there!
  23. Was this session recorded for those of us who were interested but couldn’t make it? (Count me as one.)
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