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9/5 - Charles River, Barking Crab, Mystic River


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The State Police said that we could park at Magazine Beach for longer than the three hour parking limit by simply telling the officer on duty when we parked. There was no officer so explanatory signs littered the dash boards. Have no idea if they were ever read.

Deb, Judy, Jamie, and Leslie and I made an on-time departure from Magazine Beach at 11:05. The air was warming up and we decided to go with light clothing. The wind was in our face but the water was so warm it was a good decision. Jamie Doucett, a new member to the club but not to paddling - including flat water racing - was on his first trip. Wish I had put more rocks in his stern compartment.... He is fast.

Pulled out on the new dock at the Barking Crab about 1 PM. The front docks are now private but the resturant's dock behind the rest is clearly marked. We did not have reservations (need at least 6 in your party) but there were plenty of seats. The group's stylish attire of dripping botties, shortie wetsuits with zippers in funny places, and paddle jackets was appropriately oggled. We realized how warm the water was as we quickly became cold in the shade of the resturant. Cowder and layers helped us get ready for sandwiches.

Left at 2 PM and headed back past Old Iron Sides for a Mystic River tour lead by Leslie. The tide helped as we kept well to the opposite shore of the LNG tanker. A State Police launch cruised by and complimented us for staying on the "right" side of the river. Another patrol boat was also on station. Imagine what the new security costs to have two boats always on patrol!

We noted the very nice put-in with concrete ramp and grassy park behind the Shraffs building. Just before the Somerville locks Jamie pointed out where he had put in for a flat water race at the soccer fields behind the Assembly Square mall. No one had any idea what that would be like at lower tide.

We felt very powerful as we locked through at Somerville. There was almost no boat traffic on the Mystic and we were proud to see our tax money at work. The new moorings after the locks are impressive. We stopped at President's Landing on the right to stretch. I asked a gentleman about to lock up the MWBC (Mystic Wellington Boat Club) at the landing if he knew of any public facilities and he was kind enough to open the club to us. The concrete ramp and park there is great and he let us know that there is free parking behind the MWBC parking lot for public boaters.

We returned down the Mystic and as we turned for the Charles River Locks a paddler in wooden kayak came out and started asking questions. I wish I could remember his name. He had just finished building the boat and was still learning how to paddle it. He had seen NSPN on the web and planned to join the club. He joined us in our paddle back to Magazine Beach here we found our cars untouched about 6 PM.

So our ratio of 6 hours of paddling to 1 hour of eating seemed way to high, but fun was had by all.

Respectfully submitted.

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