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This just in from ALAN.
Well, after a few official & unofficial April paddles the new paddling season has officially begun (though for a few of us lucky ones, the 2014 season never ended!)
NACK held its first peer practices of the season this past Monday & though it seemed that having a Nassau County option may have bled off some attendance from the Timber Point session, it still was a very productive & enjoyable evening for the foursome who turned up @Great River. A nice outing, capped off by another beautiful, trademark Connetquot sunset. -with no bugs! (yet)
Under a warm late afternoon sun & with now-reasonable water temps we practiced various advanced ruddering strokes & assisted rescues right off the launch area for a while.
And even though early arrivals Tom & Debbie had already warmed up with a paddle downriver & around Nicoll Island, they were more than happy to then lead Ron & myself down & around for another lap.
A steady wind out of the South with some wind driven waves greeted us as we turned into the bay. Was a nice mix of conditions.
Once we were headed back upriver, a quick stop at the ‘drowning hole’ was made to try some practice rolls; then back to home base to call it a night.
Only complaint (if there was to be one) would be the dusk/dark park closures at Timber Pt & Heckscher killed any plans of us catching the full moon rise over the bay that night.
-May have to ‘Go West’ next month to Alhambra or J.Burns for that June Moon.
See you out on the water… -Alan M.
We weren’t disappointed on our return trip to the Carmans River.
This just in from Ron Scall.
This past Saturday I had my first opportunity to go on a group paddle with NACK. Up until now my interaction with the group was limited to pool sessions.
Spring has arrived and with it the Spring 2015 Newsletter Hopefully some warm weather too!
Goodbye to Winter…
Alan just sent in a quick report and pix from last week’s paddle in Port Jefferson.
The last Sunday of Winter found three NACK paddlers having to change their original plans of paddling out on the Sound to Rocky Point. Small craft advisories for the Sound , (30+mph winds with 3’-5’ waves of barely thawed 35°F water) made the decision to change course & stay inside Port Jefferson Harbor/Conscience Bay an easy one.
The news of a South shore tugboat captain drowning on the previous day after succumbing to the frigid waters off Fire Island was a sobering reminder of the dangers of paddling this time of year when air & water temps are both in the low-mid 30’s. The weather forecast for partly/mostly sunny skies was as far off the mark as Staten Island Chuck’s forecast for an early Spring!
With overcast skies and a strong headwind we launched from Centennial Park on the East side of Port Jefferson Harbor and crossed over, hoping the Western shore would provide us some relief from the W-NW winds but we found nothing there but a long, hard slog every stroke of the way until we stopped outside Conscience Bay for a snack/hydration break. I kept my head bone dry throughout the trip but Debbie & Chris chose to test their neck seals & neoprene hoodies with some balance bracing (& even one synchronized balance brace!) in the calm, dead low tide waters in the channel leading into Conscience.
We then got under way again, with the wind now at our back and small, wind-driven waves to surf on; it definitely made the return leg a much more enjoyable paddle. And the Sun did eventually come out.
– It just waited until the last one of us had landed back on the beach & pulled our boat out of the water! Then came the clear blue skies.
Only covered 7 miles but sure felt like WAY more.
Check out the Winter 2015 Newsletter
Both were enjoyed by Saturday’s NACK peer-practice attendees over at Field 10. The bright, sunny skies & mid 30’s temps were a big improvement over last year’s snowy, windy coldwater session; although the 48 ̊ water definitely marked the final day of wetsuit season for me! A pretty steady wind from the North kept drifting us into the fishing pier; so a quick move around to the South side of the dock gave us a protected spot where all the rollers could practice their rolls. Once everyone was satisfied with what they wanted to do, we decided on a short paddle before heading back to Ann & the mobile bagel/hot beverage/changing room support vehicle. We barely paddled a mile East & didn’t quite make it to the Wantagh Pkwy bridge before the allure ofhot chocolate had us all turned around & heading back West to Field 10 to call it a day. But our practice wasn’t quite over.
While using a passing wake from a big motorized barge as opportunity to capsize & practice just ‘one more roll’, Bob got an unexpected lesson that his roll wasn’t quite bombproof (yet) & will now put those upcoming pool sessions to good use working on coming up from his offside. Debbie & Steve also got an opportunity to team up for the assisted rescue while I got to fill in for Lynne & take pics! Once back near shore I practiced getting assisted-rescued myself. The heelhook re-entry went well but my bow rescues not so much. Took a few tries to ‘get-the-nack’ again. Glad for the opportunity to getthis practice in before it really gets cold. And ‘specially glad for Ann coming out, sticking around & keeping that generator cranking for our Après-yak donuts & hot chocolate. Thanks! -Alan M.
The Fall 2014 edition of the North Atlantic Canoe & Kayak Newsletter is now available online. It’s great reading and includes registration information on the Winter Pool Program so it’s not something you would want to miss!