Black River Riverfest 2021

RiverFest is an annual fun and relaxing paddle down the Black River. The 2021 Riverfest started at 8am at the Lower Lyons Falls Canoe Launch. This years route was 8.6 miles on the Black River. The event ended in Glenfield by the canoe launch near the bridge on Greig Road. There was a midpoint at Burdicks Crossing.

Paddlers were urged to participate in a trivia contest on their way with questions provided by Lewis County Soil & Water on large pool floats positioned along the river. There was food available at the mid-point and a shuttle was available in the morning so paddlers have their vehicles waiting for them at the end. RiverFest is a fundraising event held by the Lewis County Chamber of Commerce.

Kathryn and I left early such that we could leave a vehicle at the take out and not have to rely on the shuttle. At the launch we observed 6 canoes and many dozens of kayaks. Based on the 30 vehicles in the parking lot at the take out I estimated at least 50+ vessels over all.

We launched at 0835 behind about a dozed other boats. Due to recent thunder storms the river was bank-to-bank high and the current was strong; estimated flowing at 2 mph. We saw a few birds: herons, cedar wax wings, an osprey and a bald eagle that stoically sat as we floated by.

Kathryn set a healthy pace and after one hour we arrived at Burdick’s Landing where we found the LaMont’s Food Fair food truck and bought drinks and shared a hot dog. The on-site volunteer stated the water was the highest she had experienced in her 6 years of service. The 55 minute paddle to the destination was uneventful.

We loaded up and hate lunch at the Pioneer Cafe where the service was slow, but the food was delicious.

Hilbert Orientation

We made the drive to Hilbert on Monday such that we could attend the full day of orientation on Tuesday. Eric and James were separated into different student groups while Kathryn and I attended complementary parent’s sessions. It was comprehensive agenda of topics which presented all the resources available to new students. A long day, but worth the trip.

Lake Kushaqua – Rainbow Lake

Took a nice 3 day trip starting at Lake Kushaqua. Lake Kushaqua is a 380 acres lake near Loon Lake and Rainbow Lake in the town of Franklin, It is on the North Branch of the Saranac River. The shoreline is state owned except for two small in-holdings.

We paddled to Clear Pond (~5 miles). Clear Pond parallels the three-mile long narrow Rainbow Lake, separated from it by a narrow esker. Day 2 we paddled empty canoes from Rainbow Lake to Jones Pond and Osgood Pond and then returned to our Clear pond campsite. The round trip distance is about 12 miles with a 1.5 mile carry between Rainbow Lake and Jones Pond. That took us about 6 hours, which is more than I really want to be paddling anymore.We caught a break with the weather in that we only experienced rain on Tuesday morning; so we sat under a tarp and had a leisurely breakfast. Day 3 we paddled out.

Boat Guard SPF 50 for Canoes

Based on a recommendation I picked up a bottle of Boat Guard SPF 50 to treat my 40 year old fiberglass Wenonah Jensen 18. Over the years it had picked up its share of scratches. The transformation was magical. I had occasionally used 303 on my boats previously, but I am hopeful this treatment will last a little longer. I was so thrilled I also treated my 16′ Seda Scout.

Eric’s Graduation

Eric’s Graduation ceremony was held at the HP football stadium on Friday night. The procession began with a car parade in a light rain from GWF to the HP high school. The rain did not dampen the spirits of the graduates or the spectators. The parade was initiated last year due to COVID but will likely become a tradition due to it’s popularity.

At the high school we were dispersed on the field with DIY seating to hear musical arrangements, speeches and presentation of diplomas. It’s been a rough 18 months; Eric, like many, didn’t do well with remote learning; the school – especially his principal – really worked with him; Eric put in a lot of effort to attain this “Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation.” So this celebration was well-earned!

At the end of the speeches a fabulous fireworks display.

From Rome Sentinel:

HOLLAND PATENT — The Holland Patent Central School District braved the rain to celebrate its 2021 commencement with a ceremony at the school’s sports stadium on Friday, June 18. The ceremony began with opening music followed by a welcome by Principal Russell E. Stevener, Jr. Students then marched in to Pomp and Circumstance followed by the pledge of alliegiance led by Senior Class President Grace Elizabeth Mahanna. The national anthem was then performed by Thomas R. Breil, Nicco A. Klein, Jessica Rene Landman and Arianna Rose Lange. Jonathan Schmitt gave the salutatory address. Stevener delivered a recognition of faculty before Lange gave a profile of the Class of 2021. Breil gave the valedictory remarks before Superintendent Jason P. Evangelist recognized the class standard bearers and Rory J. Richard performed “Rise Up.” Lydia Kelly, president of the Board of Education, gave the proclamation of graduation, followed by the presentation of diplomas, the singing of the school Alma Mater and the recessional.

Stillwater Campsites 39-46

Skip and I made a 3 day/ 2 night trip to Stillwater specifically to scout the conditions of campsites 39 – 46. We utilized the water access off Moose Road and had a short paddle to site 41 where we set up out base camp. The 1st day we were hampered by high winds and merely relaxed in camp. The following day we located and inspected each campsite with an eye towards future use.

Garden 2021 – Slow to Launch

I have been working on my garden lately. You may remember that I got tons of leaf mulch from my neighbor. Last fall I basically stripped the entire garden by hand and then buried the leaf compost. In April I rented a tiller and really worked the dirt and mulch together. I think it will be good for retaining moisture and loosening up the soil.

In early May I planted cool weather items: spinach, lettuce and Swiss Chard which failed to sprout. So today I replanted them. I started a new row of Asparagus with 20 root stocks. They are just beginning to come up. I put in potatoes which are doing very well so far. I planted 6 sweet peppers that Eric got for some reason. I started Brussels sprouts, broccoli and eggplant inside but they didn’t get very robust. I blame the Agway “potting soil” that I bought; it had a lot of bark and wood chips in it. At the end of their tenure inside, I started watering them with Miracle Grow and I got them outside in a cold frame for a week. Hopefully, now that they are outside, they will take hold. I had similar experience with my tomatoes, but they developed better root structures.
Why did the tomato blush? Because he saw the salad dressing!

Go With The Flow Kayak Club

I joined a local paddling group that has a day trip planned for every Tuesday.  The group is mainly retired females paddling kayaks, but there are a few men paddling as well.  The past two weeks we have paddled around ponds in Madison County. The black flies and mosquitos are still problematic in the Adirondacks so the group all these early trips in the southern tier.  I have been impressed with their organization and ability to schedule trips from May through October. On my 1st outing I took my Prism Solo canoe but yielded to group norms for the 2nd outing and used the 12′ kayak. I worked out entry and exit procedures but was uncomfortable in that I couldn’t move my legs. After and hour of paddling I was desperate to shift my legs.