Friday, April 27, 2012

To Eastern PA - 12

We've fallen into a consistently predictable weather pattern that makes daily updates unnecessary.  Weather has been our enemy on this trip.  They had beautiful weather before we arrived: nights of 45 deg. and days of 65, but in our defense, we've pretty much solved their drought for them.  The weather now is cold and rainy one day, then winds of 30-40 mph the next, followed by another cold and rainy, then another day windbound, and so on in regular rotation.  In short, it's not paddling weather.

We had a spell of three days that were very cold with rain and high wind all together.  There is a stand of trees next to us that is covered in English ivy.  It was full of nests of young birds.  The bad weather totally wiped out all the nests and birds: a whole hatching of chicks obliterated.

This weekend is the annual car show in Carlisle.  It is one of the largest shows in the country, and it fills not only the fairgrounds, but all the camping parks, motels, restaurants, and anywhere else you may want to go.  If trying to drive anywhere, the smart approach is to try planning a route that involves only right turns, because making a left turn across the bumper-to-bumper on-coming traffic is both dangerous and difficult.

When we were sailing, I used to occupy myself with armchair sailing when pinned down by bad weather and worse commitments, which was getting out the charts and cruising guides and planning trips.  I'm now doing armchair paddling.  It not only whets the need for making a real trip when the situation improves, but helps to move a paddling trip up the list of priorities.  In some ways, I find the paper paddling almost as pleasant as some of the real trips: less mud, fewer ticks, mosquitoes, and flies, and no poison-ivy.

Nevertheless, if we hang in there, we'll get back on the water.
Cheers, jim

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