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Susan Hargrave

Walden Wednesdays (July 19)

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My husband and I would like to attend. We have new boats and have never done self rescue before, so we would really appreciate some help and encouragement! Although I know it's important to learn, I am feeling quite timid about the whole thing. Is anyone else coming?

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I plan to arrive around 4pm on Wednesday.  I and almost certainly others will be happy to help you learn assisted and self rescues.

The weather looks clear but HOT, which will probably mean crowded.  If you cannot find parking at the boat ramp, you can drop your kayak at the ramp and park in main parking.  Unless of course the park closes because it hits visitor capacity. (See https://twitter.com/waldenpondstate.)   So far this year they have only hit capacity on weekends and around holidays.  However, days with highs in the 90's tend to maximize attendance.

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Thanks, Bill. We'll plan to be there at 4:00 or earlier and will look for you. I noticed that Walden had closed because of capacity last Monday, but it was just in the morning/early afternoon. I'll keep my fingers crossed for this week and will see you Wednesday. Thanks in advance for your help!

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I will also plan to be ther, but am not optimistic about parking.  Susan, I'm actively working on rescues so would be glad to help out.

i had interesting conversation with DCR guy early Sunday morning.   He said closures are NOT caused by full parking lot,  but by staffing cutbacks.

I am also willing to meet people first thing in the morning.  I may well be at Walden before 8 am on Wednesday just to be sure I get practice in.  If others would like to join me then, post here.

 

Prudence

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I plan on attending also and self rescues will be a great focus - will try to get there around 4 but may be a little later

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Fyi to everyne.  I was at Walden for two hrs this am practicing  rolls and self rescues.  When I left at 11, park closed to new arrivals.  First time this summer on a weekday.  So everyone be sure to check the Walden twitter feed before setting out.  I anticipate that it will be hard to get in at 4.  Maybe 5:30...  If it's closed til the , I'm not going.  Got a pretty good workout today anyway!

For potential early birds, I'm joining Jinathan and Kelsey Oltz tmrw (Thurs) am EARLY - like 6 am. Pls join us.  Parking a breeze at that hour!

 

Prudence

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Thanks for the heads up, Prudence. We are getting our act together and hope to be there before 3:30. Walden was supposed to open at 2pm, and there are no new notices about closures.

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I just got to Walden 2:45. Talking with the aquatic marine control guy. They may close the park soon but the boat ramp still has spaces and he is keeping it open for boaters

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%#¥£~^#!!!

Walden is closed. I think Jane and Sue arrived early enough to get in but Yong, Les and I were unable to get in, and exchanged expletives from our cars in the choking traffic and 91degree heat. 

#}%¥•€~<>€%#!!!!

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I was in the car in front of Yong.  Arrived at Walden about 7 minutes after they closed.  I just got home ( about 1 hour drive down, about 1.5 hours to get home).

Quote

Walden Pond @waldenpondstate 2h2 hours ago

7/19/17 at 3:53pm Walden Pond closed for visitor capacity. Walden Pond closed for the night. Walden Pond opens 5am Thursday, 7/20/17

It has been a few years since I was last shutout.  After 2.5 hours in the car today, I think I should stop attempting to get in during "reopening" windows.

The guard at the Walden gate was urging me to go to the river, I believe he meant the Concord River to paddle.  Without prior arrangement it didn't make sense to go alone tonight.  Does anyone local know if there is a river put-in near Walden that might make sense as a backup plan?

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33 minutes ago, PeterB said:

%#¥£~^#!!!

Walden is closed. I think Jane and Sue arrived early enough to get in but Yong, Les and I were unable to get in, and exchanged expletives from our cars in the choking traffic and 91degree heat. 

#}%¥•€~<>€%#!!!!

Expected thst...so didn t go!  It helped to have had a fun time by myself in the morning...altho I was interested in sitting in Peter's boat again after getting mine foamed out in attempted copy of his.

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1 hour ago, PeterB said:

%#¥£~^#!!!

Walden is closed. I think Jane and Sue arrived early enough to get in but Yong, Les and I were unable to get in, and exchanged expletives from our cars in the choking traffic and 91degree heat. 

#}%¥•€~<>€%#!!!!

This is why I gave up hope, we tried to go this past Sunday and we're turned away. We have been going in the early mornings which is quite pleasant if anyone cares to join.

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There is an alternative plan that I use when Walden closes. It is a nice pond nearby to Walden but the parking is a little tricky-if you are interested in this "plan B" message me Bill and we could always text each other when Walden closes--

les

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I am so sorry for those of you who didn't get in last night! We arrived about 3:15, and I was afraid we might not get in. We met Jane, and she was great in helping us try out assisted and self-rescue techniques. As far as alternate spots, I have put in on the Concord River before, but I don't know if the spot has enough parking and I don't know if the river is suitable for practicing rolls and rescues. As a backup plan, I had emailed someone at the AMC Boston Paddlers, because I saw on their web site that they have a practice session on a nearby pond at the same NSP does. Apparently there is a tiny parking lot but people are allowed to park at a nearby school within a 5-minute walk. If NSP wants to use that as a backup plan, it would probably be best to coordinate with the organizers at AMC so that we don't overcrowd their spot.

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AMC's whitewater group has practiced in the past at White's Pond in Concord on Wednesday nights. That pond has had issues with algae blooms in the past. On popular nights, you may need to park at the nearby school and walk over.

There are several options for a river paddle near Walden pond. I would suggest the Lowell Rd boat launch near Egg Rock (the confluence of the Assabet and Sudbury rivers, where the Concord begins), or one of the put-ins on the Sudbury river south of Walden.

http://www.sudbury-assabet-concord.org/concord-river-boaters-trail/

http://www.oars3rivers.org/river_map/map/1

 

Given the popularity of Walden on hot days, I'd propose that on "really nice" days, or days where Walden has at least one closure before 4PM, we abandon the pond in favor of a river paddle. Destinations can include the Old North Bridge, Fairhaven Bay, birdwatching at Great Meadows NWR.

I wouldn't practice rolling or spend a lot of time inhaling water from the rivers. Rescue practice is probably fine.

 

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I actually drove over to the AMC Boston WW Paddlers practice spot from Walden yesterday.  Unfortunately all the close spots had already been snagged.  While it is possible to drop your kayak and park at the school, I didn't feel up to it in yesterday's heat.

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14 minutes ago, Dan Foster said:

Given the popularity of Walden on hot days, I'd propose that on "really nice" days, or days where Walden has at least one closure before 4PM, we abandon the pond in favor of a river paddle. Destinations can include the Old North Bridge, Fairhaven Bay, birdwatching at Great Meadows NWR.

I wouldn't practice rolling or spend a lot of time inhaling water from the rivers. Rescue practice is probably fine.

Dan, you know that I HAVE TO ROLL.  Though inhaling water is optional.  Just how bad is it?

I had some issues with your links Dan, but I think this link should provide Google Map directions between Walden and the Lowell Rd boat ramp.  Next time Walden closes on a Wednesday shall we have everyone just automatically go to the Lowell Rd boat ramp?  I'm certainly open to trying it at least once.

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How is the water quality? I'm no expert, but I know for a fact that fish pee in all three of those rivers, whereas at Walden they're supposed to use the bathhouse. There are also wastewater treatment plants upstream on both the Sudbury and Assabet, although oars3rivers.org has done a great job of forcing towns to reduce the level of phosphorous released into the rivers.

If we do have a hot day where Walden isn't an option, I'd encourage people to bring a picnic or snack. It's really nice to hang out down by the Old North Bridge as the sun sets and then it's a quick paddle back to the cars. There's also the option to perform seal launches off of the railing of the bridge for the tourists.

Edited by Dan Foster

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What about Horn Pond in Woburn? I was there years ago when NSPN assisted REI's demo kayak  day but don't remember much about the place other than a bunch of paddlers could use it and it's in Woburn, which looks like a reasonable alternative location to Walden Pond.  

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3 hours ago, PeterB said:

What about Horn Pond in Woburn? I was there years ago when NSPN assisted REI's demo kayak  day but don't remember much about the place other than a bunch of paddlers could use it and it's in Woburn, which looks like a reasonable alternative location to Walden Pond.  

Swimming not allowed at Horn Pond, altho there is apparently a boat launch, but what we do in and out of boats may not be acceptable.

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I would like to suggest The Upper Mystic lake in Arlington/Winchester/Medford. This is my go to local place for practicing. Plenty of parking all around, and there is a decent size parking with a boat ramp as well. Water quality at the beach is good, as some places get Cyanobacteria outbreaks this time of year. 

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20 minutes ago, Nick1979 said:

I would like to suggest The Upper Mystic lake in Arlington/Winchester/Medford. This is my go to local place for practicing. Plenty of parking all around, and there is a decent size parking with a boat ramp as well. Water quality at the beach is good, as some places get Cyanobacteria outbreaks this time of year. 

Where do you park & launch?  My Google searching only found the Medford Boat Club, but I'm not especially interested in joining it for such limited use.

Temporary issue: The Mystic Lakes are currently closed to swimming and kayaking because of a cyanobacteria algae bloom.

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There is a public free parking and a ramp right next to the boating club. One does not need to be affiliated with them at all. Between the two lakes. Plenty of mini parking lots alongside Mystic View parkway. There is another larger parking lot at the upper part of the Mystic lake as well, near the beach area. 

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