NACK Newsletter Winter 2017

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The Winter Newsletter is now online.  Paddling wild water tideraces, Cycling in the Alps, The Great Pumpkin Paddle, Winter Pool and much more.


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A Tale of Two Weekends

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From “It was the worst of winds”, to “There wasn’t a wisp of wind!”  You couldn’t plan two more opposite paddles from one weekend to the next if you wanted. But the first two December weekends of 2016 gave us exactly that.

On Saturday the 3rd I found myself over at Oak Beach with 6 other NACK paddlers plus a friend & his guest down from CT for the day. Plan was to find some mild surf to try out Chris K’s new boat & get in one last hurrah at Democrat Pt. before resigning ourselves to more tame winter paddling interspersed with some warm, soul renewing pool sessions.

 Mother Nature scoffed at our plans.

Instead of surf, we ended up with 25-27kn crosswinds (gusting 30-33) & a flood current in the inlet to add to the challenge of getting over to Sore Thumb Beach. For a few spots there it really just seemed like being on a treadmill to nowhere.

Season’s not over yet !

Finally tucking around & in the cove @Sore Thumb we beached it & went up on dunes to look across at Demo. Absolutely nothing was happening on the outside so we chose not to waste any effort crossing the inlet & then having to fight a crazy headwind back. We took what meager lemons the conditions gave us & played the best as we could in them. Chris in the latest addition to the NACK fleet managed to squeeze out the ‘run of the day’ on a barely perceptible wave. Rest of us had our moments too but there really wasn’t much to pick from. The new Sterling Progression got a try out from about half of us & really performed well in conditions. (just that these weren’t the conditions we came out for!) Our lunch break was a battle just trying to find a somewhat protected spot away from the horizontal head to toe sandblasting. It really was relentlessly unforgiving.

A few of the group had seen enough & headed back together, watching them paddle back into the wind it seemed like they were never going to ever get back across the bay! The remaining 6 decided to just go explore further south & west around the point. We were rewarded with much bigger & better wind waves but the EXTREMELY difficult turns at the end of our runs coupled with a headlong slog dead into the 25+ knots kind of tipped that work-to-reward ratio into negative territory in short order.

After about a half dozen (or less) goes at it we all grouped up tightly again & headed back to our launch point. Once there, some of us practiced rolling & were surprised at how fast the ice cream headaches came after just a few dousings in the 51°degree waters. All in all was a good time. Getting nine paddlers out in December was satisfying all in itself after struggling some times to even get a half dozen of us together ‘in season’!








Here’s a nice video compilation our visiting friend Luke put together to give you a little flavor of what it was like out there.  Good times 🙂 (& here’s my video offering)


Article here is getting longer than I thought so let me just quickly say this past Sunday, the 11th was a totally different experience. Water in bay was now 41° with launch time air at 33° (up from an overnight 24° that left three of us with a bit of an ice covering at the boat ramp to paddle thru).

But once out onto the bay we had a bright sun & incredibly calm flat water. I mean we could literally see the reflection of the Robt. Moses Bridge in the waters below from 3 miles away.

The flocks of shorebirds taking off right in front of us were also very cool. & having no annoying power boaters polluting the vhf airwaves with their “5-by-5 captain!” gibberish gave a nice peaceful feeling to the day.

Paddling west past Indian island we met up with Mike, a friend of the club from the dinghy shop who now made it a foursome.



Though the calm was increasingly disturbed & now was regularly punctuated by the pop-pop-pop of a surprising number of duck hunters out in the marsh islands! (& one group off in the distance hunting off the bow of their boat at anchor).  Was a little unnerving I’ll say. ‘Specially one spot as we left Gilgo & were passing the last island before the final long diagonal crossing home.  A whole flock of decoys was set up right there off the east side of the island. We managed to get the hunter’s attention to alert him to our presence (he seemed more concerned about us possibly paddling through his decoy field !).

So we went extra far east to give a wide berth & let him get back to business. Trip ended up being a respectable 10 miles.

I will say even though it was great outing,  I DO miss those Summer paddling days that are just mere memories now. Especially so when I arrived home to that frozen garden hose that I was hoping would be ready for a quick washdown of my boat & winter gear!  (more pics here)  and a short video here

Thanks here to Paul for planning & leading us Sunday & to Troy for showing up (& providing plenty of post-paddle hot chocolate) & as I’m not a solo paddler in any season I’m glad you guys aren’t hibernating. 🙂  Happy Holidays to all & see you’s back on water 1.1.17 or the week later in the pool.  -Alan

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Cold Weather Gear Seminar at the Dinghy Shop – Wed, 11/30 5pm – 7pm

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On November 30th the Dinghy Shop will be hosting a Cold Weather Paddling Gear Seminar sponsored by Gill, makers of some great paddling and all around outdoors clothing. There will be a seminar by Mike and Paul covering year round layering and what to wear in a variety of conditions. We’ll have a showcase of the new Gill 2017 gear line up from the latest hydrophobic fleece, base layers, light weight jackets, drysuits, and more. There will be gear to try on and all Gill will be on sale. Whether you paddle year round or just in the warm months, Gill has the right gear to keep you safe and comfortable. Join us from 5pm – 7pm on 11/30 for the seminar, raffles, and fun around our wood burning stove. All are welcome.

Click the image below to see their flyer for the event.


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Article and Photos By Rhonda Moziy

Under a windy faded red and gold autumn day at Belmont Lake State Park, NACK once again performed for the youngsters and adults at The Great Jack-O-Lantern Sail.


On the Pre-Halloween Day of October 28th, our kayaks were once again proudly displayed for a myriad of uses.   The bright yellow prevailing kayak on wheels, was the star of the day, the one that got the most expenditure. Bob, Troy, and Chris were the main pull-tow chauffeurs of the famous NACK on-land kayak boat rides. The line of anxious riders grew as long as the fence surrounding the park. A whole year of gym membership for them was covered in less than 3 hours from the uncountable times of running in circles.


In another area, Steve and Roy operated the simulating kayak board rollers. The excitement of feeling what it’s like to be on a kayak was present on the faces of the older children and adults as they steered their way on dry land. Emery later brought out his Kayak Trainer machine to offer a different take on kayaking.

“Trick or Treat” you ask, well Pat and Rhonda safely guarded the bags of chips, popcorn, pretzels, Doritos and Dum Dum lollypops that were set up alongside our NACK brochures on the wooden picnic table nearby. As I handed out the snacks, Pat entertained children with snapping spiders and giving out spider rings.

Crowds of kids in costumes ran from place to place participating in the many other activities including a hay maze, a spooky den, a petting farm, ring-toss and craft booths. Frankenstein roamed around on big stilts. Nearby Babylon Volunteer Fire trucks gave tours and instruction on safety.


As the sun went down, a beautiful evening sunset sky came up. Crowds of kids and their parents lined the shoreline down by the boathouse. Park Rangers at Belmont Lake State Park carefully arranged all artfully carved pumpkins on individual small black square rafts and carefully connected them to NACK kayaks to be flickering gleaming exhibits.

Our dedicated NACKERS geared up for the Great Tow. One by one, kayakers took off with pumpkins illuminating the night while onlookers cheered. The pumpkins were methodically displayed as they circled the lake for all to see.


All eight kayak towers, John, Bob, Chris, Emery, Troy, Roy, Buddy and Jonathan came safely back. The eager owners of the pumpkins waited patiently to claim their carved masterpieces. The evening came to a close with our smiles speaking the pleasures of the magnanimous work of the day. Once again, we can’t wait to do it all again next year.

Additional Photos

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I’d like to share the wonderful compilation that Kayak Hipster (a.k.a. Luke Rovner) edited which gives a great visibility into the Hudson River Greenland Festival. For those of you who haven’t gone, it makes for a fantastic, inexpensive and nearby getaway in June with some really lovely people. Rather than blab on here about it, I’ll let Luke and his subjects do it for me!

For anyone looking for more info on HRGF, Greenland events and skills, or Luke’s work, below are a handful of great links:

Qajaqusa –
Greenland Ropes –

Kayak Hipster:
Website –
Instagram –
Twitter –

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Fall 2016 Newsletter

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The NACK Fall 2016 Newsletter is now online.  Shinnecock Canal Paddle, Blueway Trail Map, Maine Island Trail, Winter Pool preliminary info and much more!




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Article & Photos By Rhonda Moziy

Captree State Park, Sunday, September 18th.. On a day that called for heavy rain, the sun couldn’t have been any brighter. The warm September day was loaded with festivities, vendors, boat rides, pirates, painting, and nature created artwork, races and demonstrations. A shark mascot ran around and stopped to pose with guests for pictures. Music from a band in the band shell delighted us all.


NACK proudly set up a booth to offer all sorts of club information. Emery stood valiantly by his kayak training invention. Visitors were amazed by the simulated feeling of what it’s like to paddle a kayak.   The afternoon was met with NACK educating and instructing as John, Alan and Randy took their place by the waterfront to demonstrate and enforce safe kayak practices. Alan and Randy took to the waters in their kayaks and did their turns and flips and rescues as John clearly explained what they were doing and how a rescue takes place. Spectators were fascinated. After the demonstration, families stopped by the booth in earnest of wanting to learn more.

The day ended with ships coming back to shore, music quieting, and people sitting at picnic tables eating while little ones napped contented with the adventures of the day.

A fun time was had by all.  Photo Gallery

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South Shore Blueway Launch Sites

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For those folks who would like to see the Blueway Trail Launch and Landing sites in Google Earth this attached file is the answer. First download the Blueway Launch/Landing Sites file. Then open Google Earth and select the file.  You will now have all the sites marked on Google Earth.  You can zoom in/out, get GPS coordinates, plot courses and calculate distances.

***Note: The correct filename should read Launch locations rev.gpx  Some computers may add the file type extension “.txt”  If that happens delete the “.txt” so the file name ends in “.gpx”.

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