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  1. PLEASE DO NOT RSVP ON NSPN CALENDAR UNTIL YOU HAVE SENT YOUR PAYMENT FOR THE GROUP SITE ONLY. Come join us for this second inter-club kayak camping event with NSPN and SMSKN. Home Base will be Lobster Buoy Campsites in S. Thomaston, Maine, gathered at the Group Site. Arrive Friday, leave Sunday (or stay longer if you like). Paddling options abound: NE to Owls Head, SE to Muscle Ridge, or SW to Port Clyde. These trips are not appropriate for beginners. Minimal skills to participate include wet exit, self and assisted rescue, and previous experience in ocean paddling with conditions of wind up to 15K, waves to 2 feet, and crossings up to 2.0M. I will set a limit FOR THE GROUP SITE ONLY. Your spot will be secured when I receive payment ([$11.50 per person + $7.25 per car]/NITE) X 1.09 (tax; most will pay $40.88) via paypal (PREFERRED; gyork at tdsdotnet) or check (private message me). If you prefer a private site, contact campground directly (280 Waterman Beach Rd, South Thomaston, ME 04858 Phone: (207) 594-7546). PLEASE DO NOT RSVP ON NSPN CALENDAR UNTIL YOU HAVE SENT YOUR PAYMENT GROUP SITE ONLY. You will receive full refund for your trip only if you cancel before 9 PM. on August 2, OR CHOOSE TO DONATE (ANY AMOUNT) TO ELLIE /LOBSTER BUOY CAMPSITES.
  2. https://photos.app.goo.gl/5pL7Sh77r75tJUFW6 to review pix relevant to this post. 2 foam kiddy kickboards double as a paddle float. Giant elastic bands madde from bicycle inner tube pieces, bound by gorilla glue or the like.
  3. http://www.fedpubs.com/charts/breton.htm#4464 The other option is to build your own "map," without bathymetric data or aids to navigation, using caltopo/google earth or the like (declination/variation is 17°W in this neck of the world). Depending on where you are paddling, I suspect water levels are less important than tide/current data. carte-map-CBH-2024_EN.pdf
  4. Skip report; go to SLIDESHOW and/or VIDEO That I had already completed three- and four-day paddling trips on weekends 1 and 3, respectively, and now, another four-day Memorial WE trip on the upper Connecticut, galvanized my long-held notion that May is the busiest month of the year! The majority of our trip planning process is gastro-centric; Son N and I met daughter M at 7:30 promptly at the incredible Polish Princess Bakery in Lancaster, New Hampshire, for a buffet breakfast. Having no luck securing a shuttle, M would leave her car at the takeout, while N and I drove our canoe-topped cars to the put-in in Canaan, Vermont, just below the dam. We enjoyed pleasant skies, abundant headwind, and class one/swiftwater from the get-go. Despite the late start (1045), we would have a long day reaching our first night campsite at Lyman Falls, 21 miles downriver. N labeled this section of the trip a poler’s paradise, and he handled the large Tripper like an expert, as he guided us from the standing position, through the swirling waters with utmost precision. We enjoyed lunch (Amatos, of course) and a swim at a swift bend in the river. Postprandial, I would rescue my drifter daughter, a bit downstream. By degrees, we reached our destination, having paddled the wrong (right) side of the river (map left at home), but we quickly recovered in the class II run, and paddled river left to a welcoming sandy/pebbly beach. A designated campsite on the southern part of the island was accessible through the eastern channel around the island, but an accident waiting to happen, so we opted for the open beach. This would be the best decision for future sites, as ticks and early mosquitoes were coming to life here. N was excited to play with his new reflector oven, and once the fire was built, we started preparing the dessert (apple/rhubarb crisp), and commenced fryIng up the onions and thinly-sliced potatoes, to which a fresh (frozen; cooler) piece of fish rounded out the culinary delight. Multiple images in the slideshow and video will support my confession of a colossal success (reflector) with our multiple trials. M was excited for our 17-mile, day 2 destination, a site that she had visited before. We had fantastic weather, long stretches of quickwater for the first part, and expansive views of the mountain ranges beyond the farming countryside. Fewer sandy beaches to be found the further downstream we paddled, but we found a nice shady, pebbly beach for lunch. Minutes before landing at the gorgeous Samuel Benton campsite, a party of six with three canoes claimed the second of two campsites amongst the trees and grass up the riverbank. We were only momentarily disappointed, remembering the marauding critters that lived in the tall grass, and happily lined our canoes and gear upstream, to the quiet side of the extensive stretch of beach, and set up our home for the night. Maine yellow-eyed beans had been soaking all day in once-boiling water, carried in a steel cannister, and wrapped in a reflective bivy. We continued boiling the beans over the fire, with all the classic ingredients (dried mustard, molasses, onions, and maple syrup). As if already fully seasoned, the reflector hatched the most incredible drop biscuits EVER (think of the comical Dysart’s clip found HERE). Like the Dave Mallett song (…and there’s biscuits and beans at the late-supper meal….and there’s nothin’ like beans, when your workin’, you know…), we were in our element, watching the bank swallows across the river fly in and out of their perfect circle holes in the steep bank. After a short game of Cosmic Wimpout around the fire, N and I retired to our tents, while M laid out her bedroll, cowgirl style, beside the alluring fire. An intermediate, 16-mile paddle lay ahead of us on day #3, our destination S. Guildhall campsite. We broke camp spit-spot, and looked to repeat the favorable conditions in front of us. Following a short portage of the dismantled Wyoming dam, we lunched on peanut butter and jam/freshly sliced pineapple, chips, cherries, and chocolate. We were in the habit of collecting short lengths of dried hardwood along the riverbanks, and collected a few more at this site, adding to our precious and bountiful supply. At length, we arrived mid-afternoon at the grassy, cozy (2 parties, side-by-side) riverbank site, later dubbed “tickville.” Another crisp (apple/cherry) was on the docket, but nachos (appetizer) were first in line, followed by egg skillet scramble with mushrooms, sweet peppers, onions, and cheese. We welcomed another 3 paddlers to the adjacent section ‘round suppertime, and offered hot coals and firewood as party favors. Mossies were tolerable, but ticks were abundant. I picked off 3 inside my tent, and shed 3 more the next day @ Flatbread in Conway, several hours after getting off the water! Our last day was an easy 3-mile trip to the takeout in Lancaster, where we locked canoes, then drove in M’s car, with all paddlers and gear, back to the 2 cars in Canaan, backtracked to the boats, and bid M farewell. REFLECTIONS (pun intended): -A frozen, water-filled 6 L dromedary in our small, 23L cooler still had a fist-sized ice chunk on day 4. -A folding Silky saw in the campbox can quickly procure scads of leaning, dead, dry hardwood for the fire. -Many of New England’s major rivers have navigable headwaters in pristine countrysides-take a gander! -Although there is usually plenty of room at designated campsites in the off-season, Miss Manners recommends welcoming fellow paddlers to your site, especially if you can make room. We befriended a stranger who is now on our “call” list if we need a fourth. -While dehydrated meals are the norm for many campers, canoeists generally have enough extra room to bring fresh food and cooler(s); campfire cooking offers a special, unmeasurable charm to this special Nature Therapy!
  5. skip report, go to slideshow Two pods of five and four paddlers, embarked from Cousins and Mere point, respectively, mid morning on Thursday. The larger, slower (had to tow the NSPN kayak filled with gear/food) pod got a late start and spent a leisurely time at their lunch stop on Crow. Upon finally arriving at the head of Cocktail Cove, we were advised to set up camp on site #1, as #2 was unreachable from the water, having suffered from Mother Nature's wrath from the multiple winter storms. Other sites, including the punch bowl (washed away!) could not escape the damage to their campsite approaches (see slideshow). After establishing our tent sites, we gathered around the fire, per usual, to enjoy the evenings repast. The next day called for seven of us to do a day trip, while the remaining two explored much of Jewell's charm. The wind was expected to be 10 kn from the east, so a shortish trip was to take us to 'Lil Chebeague to explore, continue to Long, and head back to Jewell. Of course, the washing machine off of Overset was engaged, and we made our way to the lee beach of Vail for a nice lunch. We favored a return route from northern Vaill to Jewell, but only came to that decision after taking a peek around the corner, where we were "greeted" by the predicted wind and 2 foot waves. We made a plan that C and J would lead the tight pack straight into the wind, and the slow slog back covered the 2 mile span in about 1.5 hours (1.33 kn). We gathered around the campfire once again, and shared the delicacies of potluck offerings, joined by Kyle and Joe, who had launched from EE Beach. Saturday was a rest or workday for some, while five ventured over toward Eagle and back. Showers were predicted to start around six, so we started the fire early and supped. Right on schedule, the rain commenced, and we all gathered under the capacious tarp that Dan had so kindly prepared. Under the dry, cozy awning, we practiced sheet bend, bowline, taut line (midshipman's hitch), and trucker's hitch. Later, Dan, with his expert campfire cooking skills, revived some of the now–damp coals to generate a batch of mighty fine buttery popcorn. It rained lightly through the night, but stopped at dawn, just in time to pack up and paddle home, or part II of the trip, with overcast skies and flat water, making for a relaxed paddle to our next destinations.
  6. Late notice of a few spots open on Jewell, FWIW.
  7. Glad to know there are some who remember the shared great times with NSPN paddlers over the years/decades! Mary B, Bill H, Truly Yours, Prudence B, Dave M, Rene B, Paul S, Barry M, Roger T; Lobster Buoy Campsites
  8. Said someone who might have taken a similar photo! Answers (including venue) in white, please.
  9. From L to R, name these Snapdragon scalawags. Bonus points for venue and first letter of last name.
  10. Me wonders if one of the secret components is silicone? g-a satisfied sea-lect hatch covers (all of which are tethered) customer
  11. Aside from sea kayaking, there are many benefits of being landlocked, including ready access to Mother Nature's bountiful offerings. Nonetheless, the recent "gifts" of 2, foot – plus snowstorms is "too much/too late," and I'm not a little knackered from snowblowing, shoveling, power outages, and logging. THIS TRIP IS WEATHER-DEPENDENT. Launch promptly @ 10am, ride the last of the ebbing river, and turn left, with destination of Cape Neddick Harbor as turnaround point (round trip ~11M). More details will be sent to attendees who have signed the NSPN waiver and RSVP'd on calendar event. Usual requirements for an ocean paddle, including drysuit; prepare as if you are doing a solo trip.
  12. until
    THIS TRIP IS WEATHER-DEPENDENT. Make sure you sign your NSPN liability waiver.
  13. Women's PFD and Men's NRS size 11 boots, please.
  14. Place your mouse cursor just beyond the clue, click/hold, then drag to the right, to highlight the answer(s). To write in white, type a sentence, word, or nonsense letters, highlight letters with mouse, then go here: Then choose the white box (color of text).
  15. For those of you who don't like playing guessing games, I've included the answers, in white.
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