Thursday, July 31, 2008

Community Farewell Party for Leslie and Tom Conklin

Community folks here in Grafton are organizing a party for Leslie and Tom on August 3, from 12-3pm in the church hall of St. John Francis Regis parish here in Grafton. The Church’s flyer reads:

“Please join the members of St. John Francis Regis parish in recognizing and thanking Leslie and Tom Conklin for their service in our church and the community of Grafton for the past 25 years at a reception on Sunday, August 3, 2008, 12-3:00 in the church hall. ‘The road to a friend’s house is never long.’- Anonymous”

If you have any questions, please contact the Church.

Take care,

Elizabeth Wagner
Park Naturalist

Grafton Lakes State Park
P.O. Box 163
Grafton, NY 12082
Ph 279-1155

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

PFD or Life Jacket?

In the latest American Canoe Association newsletter for instructors: USCG says “Lifejackets”

"It has been clarified by the USCG that the use of the term lifejackets is back and should be used when discussing the essential piece of equipment all paddlers should have and should wear.

The only time the term / acronym PFD is being used is when discussing the types of lifejackets and/or regulation issues.

It will be a challenge for many of us to change the terminology that we use, but to keep with the winds of change we thought you should know that the USCG will be using “lifejackets” for general terms and PFD for regulatory reference."

per NY Kayaker

PS: In the UK they are called BAs (Bouyancy Aids)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Rewards of Climbing Wright, Algonquin and Iroquois peaks in the Adirondacks

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Urgent request for a bicycle donation to an Iraqi refugee

Crossposted from Albany Bicycle Coalition:

I'm working with a local group affiliated with Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace and Women Against War to assist Iraqi refugees who've recently moved to the area. One of the men who's moved here desperately needs a working bicycle. Do you know of anyone willing to donate a man's bike or spare bike parts (Tom can rebuild some bikes we've found with the donation of spare parts)? ...

I did look into the Troy/Albany Bike Rescue program, but that scenario doesn't look like it will work especially well as regards the needs of this man and the other refugee families. The man's English is limited, as is the case with many of the refugees, thus his ability to rebuild a bike from scratch under the guidance of one of the bike rescue volunteers would be hampered. In addition, he needs this bike quickly, so that he may begin looking for jobs, etc., as the limited funds provided to him by the government as a refugee will soon dry up (basically, they receive 6 months' assistance). Basically, needed the bike yesterday, so I need to locate a bike for him quickly. This is going to be a scenario that's going to emerge over and over again, as more and more refugees will be relocating to the area in coming months.

Thanks for your time, and please feel free to call me at 542-1043 or 330-5409, as talking might be more efficient than emailing in this case. We can pick up and/or store any bikes donated, by the way.

Megan Gillespie

Monday, July 14, 2008

Tandem kayaks do have one distinct advantage over single kayaks - read below (click on photos to enlarge)

Here is Bill Valentino instructing THC members on kayak exit and re-entry at Grafton:

Although in kayak humor the tandem bears the blame for many couples divorcing, there is one saving grace:

"A tandem is about the easiest kayak to aright and to effect a self rescue. Since most kayakers nowadays are in singles they may not know this. With two people in the water it is fairly easy to flip an upside down boat right side up without filling the cockpit with water. Then one victim goes to one side, hangs on to the rear cockpit while the other victim enters that cockpit from the other side. No need for paddle floats or any elaborate re-entry procedure. Then the kayaker in the boat braces while the other victim re-enters. Since the bow area is the narrowest part of the kayak it is fairly easy to swing one leg up on to the deck and then crawl into the cockpit." Ralph Diaz from NY Kayaker

Friday, July 11, 2008

Sunday, July 20th - Trail Work on the Taconic Crest Trail

July 20 (Sun) Trail Work – Taconic Crest Trail

This is a joint trip between ADK and the Taconic Hiking Club (THC). The Taconic Crest Trail needs some help from interested hikers. The northern section of this 35-mile (total) trail draws visitors from a wide area; Germany, Ireland, Toronto and all corners of the United States. Going north from Petersburg Pass, this section ends at North Petersburgh and Rt. 346 where NYS DEC has put in a parking lot, trail register and display kiosk.

We will do some drainage ditching, put in some small foot bridges, move some stone (a very short distance !) and do the usual brush trimming, etc...all in the shade ! Afterwards the THC will treat all to ice cream, sodas etc. at a nearby Stewart's and answer questions on the trail, it's conditions and DEC's involvement. The local DEC Ranger may be on hand for part of the day.

This is an opportunity to see firsthand a trail only a 45 minute drive from Albany which offers both easy day hikes as well as strenuous body-building exercise sections with scenic views into MA (Greylock) and even the Catskills (on a clear day).

LEADER &PLACE: : David Pisaneschi 459-5969. No calls after 9:00 please.

Just to live in the country...

"Just to live in the country is a full-time job. You don't have to do anything. The idle pursuit of making a living is pushed to one side, where it belongs, in favor of living itself, a task of such immediacy, variety, beauty, and excitement that one is powerless to resist its wild embrace." EB White

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Rafting on Indian River - click on photos to enlarge

The Indian River - Hudson River area is very popular with commercial rafting companies.

First the raft has to be pumped up by a powerful woman.

Next the frame is lifted into the raft.

Then load up and follow everyone else into the Indian River.

During lunch break we can watch the other rafters.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Capital District Bicycle Trail Plan

Click here to read about and see maps for the proposed overall Capital District trail plan: