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Ray Sims

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  • Location
    Hamilton-Wenham Massachusetts
  • Interests
    (in addition to sea kayaking) bicycling, trail running, backpacking, and X-C skiing.

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  1. Today my wife and I did the same without any fees or issue. The walk to the train station from the boat ramp takes only a few minutes and at least today, mid-week, there were many empty parking places in the lot. The lot is marked as "commuter rail parking only" (see photo); however, I doubt that it sees any policing now when so few people are commuting and there are empty places in the middle of the day...so a kayaker isn't taking anything away from commuters. We had an easy paddle around Misery Island and the small islands off Gales Point...this is still one of my favorite places around Cape Ann.
  2. Back to Long Wharf today for a personal Blackburn Challenge + the Canal. I was slower than I had hoped and ended up coming back exactly at low tide. It was a doable walk with the left side (facing the wharf) more sandy (better) and the right side more muck. About 70 feet to walk.
  3. Today we gave Long Wharf a try for first time after many years of living on the North Shore. Excellent choice. We were started a few hours before high tide and finished just after high so I can't say what it is like at low. At the corner of Concord and Atlantic Streets there was an electric sign saying "Residents Only at Beach", i.e. for Wingaersheek Beach; however, no signs regarding residents-only at Long Wharf and there were only about 15 vehicles in the lot that looked like it could hold 50. Only a couple of other people were around, and so it was no effort to "socially distance". We'll definitely be using this location again and from now on avoid the circus of the Pavilion Beach area.
  4. Thanks Pintail, mhabich, Deb M regarding Pavilion Beach. Thanks midtempo and Liz (eneumeier) regarding Long Wharf. Thanks too Liz regarding Corliss Landing and Brown's Mill. Thanks Deb M regarding Lane's Cove. What we ended up doing yesterday was pulling into the small parking area off 127 across from Harbor's Point Ice Cream and next to the Porta Potties. We unloaded there and I then found a parking place on Centennial Ave, a side-street near the drawbridge. It was midday (shame on us for not getting an early morning start) and parking along 127 was bumper-to-bumper all the way to back to Stage Fort. The north side of 127 had temporary "no parking Friday 7am to 3pm" signs on sawhorses, but a lot of people parked there anyway. Overall, a bit of a zoo. Paddle notes: 20+ knots strong onshore breeze when we started. We headed out straight into the wind along the west side of the harbor and ended up only going as far as Norman's Woe Rock, which was a nice place to explore around with a leeward break from the wind and at mid-tide. Waves two to three feet with the occasional one that went over my spray skirt when punching through. On the return the wind had settled to an estimated 10 to 15 knots so we didn't fully get the payback we might have hoped for and the waves weren't big enough to surf -- instead, it felt like I kept sliding back down waves without getting real benefit from the following seas. At this point my partner/wife was tiring and so it wasn't the time to paddle hard enough to try to ride the crests. All and all, I'll give the day a 'B' grade. I look forward to (re)exploring some other areas from Gloucester after recent years of not getting out much at all and almost always launching from the Ipswich Pavilion Beach, Essex, or Manchester Harbor when I did get out.
  5. Hi, I'm a Wenham resident and plan to kayak tomorrow, 18 June, somewhere on Cape Ann. I'm looking for current status for put-ins. On Friday 22 May when we last visited, Pavilion Beach in Ipswich and the Essex boat ramp were temporarily restricted to Ipswich and Essex residents respectively due to Covid. If the above still aren't available to me, I'm considering Corliss Landing, Long Wharf Landing, or Lanes Cove in Gloucester. I've checked the three town websites and couldn't find the desired information. Has anyone recently put-in at any of the above locations as a non-resident? Any recommendations for tomorrow? Thanks
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