Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hampton Creek Paddle- July 19th

Here's an account of the paddle from George:

We had five show up- myself, Jim, Suzanne, Dennis and Debbie. We waited for Jeff and Chris until about 11:30 thinking Jeff implied he was coming to show us were to stop for lunch. It was suggested that in the future anyone going could go to the "meetup" and sign up, or perhaps do an email thread. Since Debbie lives in Hampton she took over as tour guide and she did a great job!. She has a friend (Tracy) who has a house on the water and we made that our destination. The only problem was there was no beach and the dock was about 5' above the water. We solved that problem by putting her paddle boat in the water which gave us something to move into before we did a monkey climb up the dock. Tracy was a great host. She treated us to wine, fruit and snacks while we ate lunch and sat around her gazebo and chit chatted.

I forgot to mention we had one almost mishap getting up on the dock. Suzanne was being helped by Dennis and Tracy when she fell back into the paddle boat pulling Tracy with her. No one was was hurt. There was also a mishap getting back into the boats. As I urged Debbie to put her butt into the sit on top first, she ignored my advice, putting her right foot in and her weight on that. She is a Tea Bag Award nominee. One other mishap occurred on the way back. As you had mentioned the wake of boats could be a problem. All the boats that went by went very slowly except one who went full speed. Everyone turned into the oncoming waves except Dennis. I hollered at him to turn ito the waves and once again I was ignored and we have our second Tea Bag Award nominee. He could not slide on top and choose to walk to shore (chest level water, 2' deep muck). After a couple of failed attempts to get into the boat the wrong way he finally listened to me and sat his butt in first and we were on our way.

All in all it was beautiful day with wonderful scenery and good companions. I think everyone mentioned what a wonderful trip it turned out to be.

Thanks George!

There's a lesson here- listen to George! He knows things about stuff!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

River Mice Upcoming Paddles

River Mice Upcoming Paddles
Originally uploaded by jmharper.
Hello Mice!

Here's what is coming up on the paddle schedule:

Sill haven't figured this one out. It is the day after the Ghent Bar Tour, and the birthday of one of our members. Your organizer probably won't get out on the water, but that doesn't mean you can't! Ideas welcome!

Sunday, August 10th
64th Street Narrows, First Landing/Seashore State Park
10:00 am

We will put in at the Narrows beach, and paddle south towards the calmer waters of Crystal Lake. Check out the backyards and enjoy a little time in the sun!

Bring a lunch, we will stop somewhere along the way to rest and eat. This paddle is an intermediate paddle, with a little open water.

Lotus Garden Park, Sandbridge Road
Saturday, August 23rd

This is a favorite paddle of ours, with a varied environment. Some canal, some winding creek, and a little open water. Last time we did this paddle, we saw a bald eagle!

Bring a snack, and we will try to pause along the way. This is a beginner/intermediate paddle, about 5-1/2 miles. Crossing Sandbridge Road with our boats is pretty dicey, but the paddle is worth it.

Portsmouth City Park
Tuesday, August 26th
This will be a relaxed paddle that will last as long as the daylight. Sterns Creek boasts a surprising amount of wildlife. This will be paced for beginners, but the occasional boat wake or the wind in the Western Branch could get tricky.

September 19-21
Kiptopeke State Park, Eastern Shore

This is one of the most mellow camping events on the Mogul Schedule. Show up, set up, watch the sunset over the bay, and paddle if you want. We will head out sometime Saturday morning to paddle, and if weather and our otherwise busy schedules cooperate, we will attempt a short paddle Sunday.

We usually handle meals on our own this weekend, sharing if you have extra. Otherwise, it is bring your own everything! If you don't feel like camping, come up and join us for the day! Kiptopeke is only 40 miles away, but it feels a lot farther than that.

We will most likely encounter open water on this trip, which can be a challenge for beginners, or even for some of us who have been paddling for a while.

Hope to see you on the water!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

River Mice July Update

Hello Mice!

A couple of reminders for upcoming paddles:

This Thursday, July 10th, is the Owl's Creek evening paddle. We will meet at 6:30pm, at the Owl's Creek Boat Ramp.

We will put-in and paddle around Lake Rudee and Lake Holly in the evening and for sunset. This is always a popular paddle. Bring a flashlight or other light to fasten to your boat for when it gets dark. We won't stay out too late after dark, but I'd love to see the fireflies again! Also bring earplugs if the jets are flying. It can get a little loud!

Beginners can paddle safely in Owl's Creek, as it is a no-wake zone. Paddling under the Rudee Inlet bridge can be tricky.

On Saturday, July 19th, the Gosnolds Hope Park boat ramp in Hampton is CLOSED. Therefore, we will put-in at the Sunset Creek Boat ramp near Downtown Hampton, and will paddle the Hampton Creek. Meet at 11:00am.

To get there, take the LaSalle exit off I-64 and head south. Turn left onto Victoria Boulevard. Take the quick right onto Ivy Home road. Cross kecoughtan Rd. and turn left on Marina Rd.

This is probably an intermediate paddle with the wide creek and potential for boat wakes. Bring a lunch, and we will stop at either Mill Point Park or Ridgway Park to eat and stretch.


If you are interested in getting the mini-skirt I had on the Drum Point paddle, here's the scoop. It is called a Seals Splash Deck, and it cost about $30. I got it at, a padle shop based in Wisconsin. Here's the link:

Future paddles are scheduled for Sunday, July 27th, and Sunday, August 10th. I'm open to ideas for locations. There are some very scenic paddles a little farther out, say near Franklin or Jamestown, or we can do some old favorites. Just let me know!

As always, if you email me, and I know you are coming, we will wait for you.

See you on the water!

Drum Point Paddle, 6-28-2008

Drum Point Paddle, 6-28-2008
Originally uploaded by jmharper.
On Saturday, June 28, ten Mice met at the Drum Point boat ramp south of Pungo to reprise one of our favorite paddles of last year. Jeanine, Jerry, Wes, Sandy, Chris, Jeff, Suzanne, Peggy George and John decided to get out of the smoke (from the fires in the area) and head SOUTH of the plume for a nice couple of hours on the water.

Drum Point allows for open water paddling in Back Bay, or creek paddling up Nanney's Creek, or in our case, a little of both.

The Gang Assembles

The Gang Assembles
Originally uploaded by jmharper.
Before heading up Nanney's Creek, we checked out a little of Back Bay, heading east and a little south to another short creek. With so much open water, we have to be careful venturing out into Back Bay. It doesn't take much wind to whip up waves!

Taking a Break

Taking a Break
Originally uploaded by jmharper.
We took our lunch break a couple of miles up Nanney Creek, in the shade of some beautiful trees. John takes relaxation to a new level while fiddling with his GPS.

We pack a lunch on many of our paddles. If we can pull in somewhere, we do. Otherwise, we just pull our boats together and dine afloat!

Bringing it Home

Bringing it Home
Originally uploaded by jmharper.
Yes, it was a relaxing paddle! Karl is proof of that, laying back all the way to take out! It turned into a hot day, but we were able to end the paddle before things got to the mid-90's.

Hope to see you on the water this summer!