Friday, November 23, 2012

Release Date 11/18/2012

We paddled up from Valentino Pier to North Brother Island at the entrance to the Long Island Sound.
It was my first time out since Hurricane Sandy, and the water seemed a bit muddy, but otherwise things were mostly back to normal. We rode up on the very end of the flood current enjoying the sunshine and free ride of the current. A bit of barge traffic, but otherwise it was pretty quiet.
We checked out the new FDR memorial, a careful check of the rules online does not say no boat landing, but there were a lot of guards standing around…

If it was possible to land anywhere there it might be a good stopping point.
I tried fishing, but the only thing I caught was a snag under railroad bridge next to the Triboro. I snagged another fishing line that must have been laying on the bottom.
We had a quick cold lunch on NBI. There WAS a lot of hurricane damage there, many down trees, but whoever looks after it had already been out there with chain saws and chopped them all up. This must be something to make them decompose faster, since they seem to do it in lots of parks around the city as well.

On the way back we saw a couple of yahoos in a motorboat that were stuck on the U Thant Island. 

They were pinned bow on into the rocks and the strong ebb current was holding the boat there. The motors weren’t strong enough in reverse to pull them directly off. We tried to help, but they shooed us away. We noticed they finally got free about 20 minutes later by turning the boat sideways.

Truth: Sometimes things stay the same.

Release Date 10/20/2012

Message was released in the Gulf of Mexico off near the wreck of the Thompson ship off New Port Richey Florida. 

We went out to go spearfishing and scuba diving. It was quite rough so we had a slow trip out and back, and it was difficult to get into and out of the water.

I got a bit sea sick and I barely felt good enough to scuba dive, and couldn’t really freedive at all. There was an amazing amount of bait fish all over the wreck, which actually made it difficult to see. I shot at a cobia, but the spear pulled out and he got away. There tons of AJs but all seemed under sized, likewise saw a few grouper, but none of them looked big enough either. 

Truth: 50 Years is a long time.

Release Date 10/13/2012

Release Date 10/13/2001

Kayaking from Red Hook out to South Beach on Staten Island. It was voyage number 2 for the Beluga and it worked really well. We were easily able to keep up with the other kayakers and if we pushed it could easily go faster than everyone.

It was a chilly day on the beach and certainly the last non-drysuit trip for the season.

Truth: Serbia Makes Good Water

Release Date 9/17/2012

Kayaking from Breezy Point. We wanted to go surfing, but the ways were small and irregular so we didn’t do very well. It was one of the last nice warm days for paddling, even at lunch when we were pretty comfortable.

Tried fishing but didn’t catch anything.

Truth: A Hard Hat does not make you a construction worker.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Found Date 7/8/2012

I went for a short paddle with a friend from Pier 40 in NYC and I didn't need to release a message in a bottle, because I found one floating right next to the dock at New York Kayak where I put in.

I'm guessing it was from someone visiting because they used the much more reasonable European date format 26-6-12.  So it was floating around in the river for 12 days before I found it.

The rest of the text says:
"At Hudson River New York, USA"

"I love you Jaanu from Jaanu"

I'm having a bit of trouble making out the email, but I think I got it, and I sent them the following:

Hi There,

I found the message in a bottle you set free in New York City.

I found the message at Houston Street on July 8, 2012. Where exactly did you release it?

I hope you enjoyed your time in New York.

I posted a picture of letter on my blog at:


Saturday, June 30, 2012

Release Date 6/3/2012

I went with a group of friends to see the space shuttle be taken into New York Harbor.

It was flown from DC to Kennedy Airport, then barged to the Intrepid Museum where it will remain on permanent display.

I met a guy under the bridge who was a very successful fisherman and gave me a lot of good tips. It seems I need to get the lures much much deeper. He recommended traditional horse hair jigs, and those long diamond shaped spoons. 

The trip down was uneventful, and we had a nice lunch and a few drinks, which I followed-up with a long nap. 
Before Nap, but getting ready

As we left we caught the shuttle coming in and under the Verazano  Narrows Bridge, which was kind of cool.

On the trip home things got a little funky with the group getting very split up all over the harbor. First one person left and decided to paddle up the Brooklyn shore. Then two others were uncomfortable in the rough water and split away.

All the while we were getting in the way of large ships and the ferry. I was really uncomfortable with the way it all played out. It's difficult when its not an organized trip. I practically begged some of the faster paddlers to slow down, but I couldn't get them to.

We eventually all made it home, but it was a bit white knuckle there for a while because we kept getting so spread out, and the slower paddlers were having trouble against the wind.

Note bottle splashdown in lower right of frame.

Truth was forgotten and not photographed...

Release Date 5/7/2012

We went out to go surfing at Breezy Point on the sandbar. 

It was an overcast day and a bit windy, so everyone wore drysuits. The surf was small, but we all caught a few waves. When the surf is small there the waves break in all different places and its hard to find a clean breaking wave and know where it will start.

After the surfing we did our traditional lounging and eating lunch on the beach.

Truth: Its going to rain sometime

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Release Date 4/4/2012

I released this message right in the middle of "The Race" near "Race Rock" Long Island in a strong ebb tide current.

We did a 3 night 4 day kayak trip from Orient Point to Point Judith.

We kept semi detailed notes on the crossing for next time.
4/4/2012 10:12 Ebb Starts at Race
We launched at 09:10, the current was already running pretty good off of Orient Point, we had to fight it a bit to get to Plumb Island, then it pushed us right along.

We arrived at Little Gull at 11:00, and the current was very strong there when we landed. We left Little Gull about 12:00.
We arrived at the very tip of Fischers/passing Race Rock at around 13:00
We took a break on a golf course arrived about 14:15 and left the beach at 15:00.
Arrived at Naptree around 16:00.

Wind was from the NW and it slowly increased throughout the day. Maybe 10Kts when we left Orient, and about 25Kts as we landed, so we got across just in time since we couldn't have made the crossing in a 25Kt wind. It was just as predicted by the weather, but the currents all seemed a bit early.

There were about 100 seals on Little Gull when we arrived. Some of them were huge, maybe 500pounds, and looked more like sealions. They were not happy about us sharing the island, and paddled around and glared at us the whole time we were there.

Checkout this link, sounds like its a real good idea we didn't come a month or 2 early since the pups would have been too small to swim, and the 800lb mommies would have been "fierce" .

We camped on Naptree, after a lot of discussion we ended up camping near a small grove of pine trees located near a bay. We tried to be, and were very discrete.

The next day we didn't get very far, between 5 and 10 miles. We stopped at a very fancy hotel in Watch Hill for lunch which was nice, but didn't add to our speed or determination to make good time. 

We found a park area along the coast that was fairly secluded, but did have a 4WD path between the beach and bush, so we had to hump the gear a long way to get away from it.

On Day 3 we went further down the coast. We had lunch at the Ocean Mist in Mattunick. A funny bar/restaurant that I had been to before after doing a surf class. We couldn't find anywhere good to camp around there, and went way up into the Point Judith harbor to a place called Ram Island. The campsite there was nice, but we had wade through a lot of muck to get up onto the land and climb the hill.

It was much colder than I had planned for, and I was cold all the time in the evenings. On the last night it was really bad, down into the 20s with ice on the boats in the morning.

Truth: You gotta learn to share.

Release Date 4/1/2012

Went for a short shakedown paddle before my Rhode Island Trip, and used it to reposition the boats to Red Hook for a quick departure on Wednesday.

We just paddled down to a new park they are building between the Gowanus Canal and the Owl Creek Sewage plant. It is an area I had been to before when it was just wilderness. Its always sad to see these funky hidden parts of NYC get developed, but it looks like it will be a nice park, that will hopefully include a kayak landing and some facilities so that will be good.

me being cold on the rocks

Message being released Statue of Liberty in Background

One of my friends found another message in a bottle from 2 little girls that had been released on January 3rd. They didn't use waterproof paper or have a great seal, but we could still read the letters. I sent them each a reply letter in the USPS mail and they replied via a comment below.

Truth: Its April Fools Day.

image of one of the letters

 Dear Alice and Mary Kate,

You will be pleased to know that my friends and I found your message in a bottle on April 4, 2012 in a new park that is being built in Sunset Park Brooklyn. The bottle had leaked a bit, but we were able to read the messages, and it was really fun to receive them.

I also send out messages in bottles everytime I go for a boat ride, or do anything on the water. I included pictures of your messages, and me in my blog:

Search down through the blog for the April 1, 2012 entry that's when we found yours.

Thank you for sending the message to us.