APRIL 23, 2017

It was an encouraging start for the 2017 paddling season. The first scheduled paddle was a “GO”. We could not hit the water last year until the 4th paddle because of the weather. This year the temperature reached 60 degrees and the wind remained less than 5 mph, which was quite pleasant for a creek and lake paddle. The water was a chilly 46 degrees, so we were doubly cautious after checking out the swift current on the swollen murky creek. Sarah, Jamie and Randy were not deterred and launched at the creek. The remaining kayakers travelled the short distance to the end point, Fisher Bay Restaurant, and launched there on Oneida Lake. They included Amy, Doug, Alice, Eric, Bill E., Hugh, Ray, Heather, Fenna Rose, Kim W. and Dave F. The daring 3 completed approx 4.5 miles. The restaurant launchers went in reverse along the Oneida shore and up the creek as far as their strength against current would allow. They completed 5 to almost 18 miles. How did that kayaker get 18? Well Dave F launched early at the restaurant, conquered the current to meet the club at the creek launch, then back to the restaurant to meet the restaurant launchers, then a few more miles with the club up the creek, then back to the restaurant. Whew. A full day for the person who travelled from out of state to paddle with the club. We wish him good luck in his new surroundings as he travels back home. Doug, our newest paddler, did very well on his maiden voyage. The littlest one – she had the BIGGEST smile.

We have not paddled the creek for 4 years because the water has been so low. This year its banks had overflowed because of the abundant rain. Thankfully, we did not run into any swans this year, just some melodious birds, a few species of sea gulls, and a huge jumping carp who seemed happy about the weather, too.

On shore, approx. 44 new and returning kayakers gathered and chatted. The banquet began with a buffet of tasty beef, chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, salad, horseradish and bread. Sarah and Jamie spoke about the Erie Canal. They talked about the upcoming activities to celebrate its 200 years of existence. A free Boat Float for kayakers is one of the activities on June 17 with 4 separate launches to choose from. There is also a cycling adventure for the bike enthusiasts. Check out They also talked about the cleanup efforts and a kayak launch to make paddling more pleasant. Kathy, Rick, Kim and Walt said a couple words about the upcoming season, T-shirts and stickers for sale, and then we ended with desert - chocolate and/or white cake.

Welcome all to our 17th kayaking season. See you on the water.

Images & Report by Kim Wojnowicz, Images by Eric Zhaman

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