The Final Round



New Jersey Shore
The Final Round
Solo Canoeing
Upper Saranac Lake
Family Visit
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Lake Champlain
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Spring Cruising 2005
2005 Cruising Plan

The Final  Round
August 23, 2005
By Colby Munger

This log entry covers our last two weeks on Lake Champlain and in the Adirondacks.  Carol returned from Tai Chi camp on Saturday August 6.  The next two days promised to be beautiful so we got underway on the 7th and headed 26 miles north to explore a fiord like cut called Deep Bay.  The place was perfect with only five boats there and the park service has put moorings in place for the boaters use.  There is a dingy landing and walking trails that provide a perimeter walk on a wooded peninsula.  For many years this had been a youth camp but now is open for wildness walks.

Late on the second day of relaxing on the mooring and walks in the woods we noticed that the weather was going to sour the next day. In the early evening we dropped our mooring and returned to Essex in two hours on calm waters with the sun setting into the Adirondack Mountains providing a memorable vista.

With our stay coming to an end, the next two evenings were spent having dinners in the local homes of friends we had made at the marina.  First with Lisa and Chick who's summer cottage was a turn of the century two room brick school house in Essex.  The second was with Pat and Bob Burley, owners of the Essex Shipyard.  Their summer home sits on eleven acres five miles south of the marina and embraces an exquisite view of the lake across to Basin Harbor. When we leave we will have new friends that will last much longer than the summer cruise.

On August 11 we took advantage of good weather to return to Basin Harbor Club in MYSTIC ROSE.  We were there for lunch and then enjoyed a four star meal in their formal dining room that evening.  This was our last afloat excursion on the lake before leaving as most of the next week took us back for additional visits to the Adirondacks.

Saturday, August 13 we drove to the top of Whiteface Mountain, the only high peak in the Adirondacks that can be reached by car.  It was fun to look out in all directions and see the places we have visited in our previous stays and paddle trips.  You can see the view of Lake Placid below.

August 16 and 17 I took Carol to the Sunday Pond B&B where I had stayed for my solo canoeing adventures two weeks before.  On the first day we returned to different put-in on Raquette River so Carol could try out the Black Jack Canoe.  The meandering river charmed us as Carol learned to use the double paddle. 

The next day we took the two canoes to Black Pond in the St. Regis Canoe Area.  We were the only ones on the pond in the morning.  At the end of the pond there is a 500 yard carry to Long Pond. The picture at the top the log shows Carol portaging her canoe.  Here we found only two loons for company.  At the head of Long Pond we pulled into a lean-to for the lunch that Dick had prepared us at the B&B. 

We returned via the carry to Black Pond and took a side trip into Little Black Pond by ducking under a low foot bridge.

I asked Carol what she thought of solo canoeing. She said it was OK but preferred me rowing her in the guide boat.  Over the next couple of days she remarked about discovering same previously unused muscles that I had discovered two weeks before.

We returned to Essex Thursday and provisioned the boat and did laundry for the trip south to Annapolis.  In the early evening, Pat had a farewell wine and cheese party for us on the dock. Everyone was invited.

On Friday, August 19, Tony Jackson picked up our car to take it south and we took in our lines on MYSTIC ROSE and headed for Whitehall at the southern tip of Lake Champlain fifty miles away.  It was day of mixed emotions as we steamed south.  It had been the best summer cruising ever and the trip home meant that this chapter was coming to an end.  We will be back, probably multiple times.

Today we are in Haverstraw, New York on the Hudson river.  Over the last four days we have stopped at places that we enjoyed on last years cruise, Lock 12 Marina in Whitehall, Schuylerville Yacht Basin, the Troy Town Dock and Catskill Marina on Catskill Creek.  These places are like old friends.  The weather has been fantastic all the way south.

A good weather window is predicted for running the New Jersey coast on Thursday, August 25.  We will move south to Nichols State Park Marina on Stanton Island tomorrow and then head for Cape May on Thursday.  If all goes well we will be on the Chesapeake Bay this coming Weekend.

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