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Bow and Stern - March 1, 1999

Bow and Stern - - March 1999

Bow and Stern

Spring 1999

The Official Newsletter of the Vermont Paddlers Club

Volume ? + 1, no. 1

> >

The President's Page

Greetings VPC members,

Spring is coming and so too some whitewater boating. The VPC continues to survive, with about 180 households paying dues. Our treasury continues to hemorrhage a bit and I can almost assure you that the year 2000 will see our dues structure change drastically. I would suggest individuals pay about $15 and households with multiple members pay around $20. We will I certainly talk about it later in the year. 1998 saw the club hold three meetings, with a new end of the season gathering in November, in Richmond. This meeting ,was not well attended but I hope that we will try this idea for a few years. I do not plan to schedule a regular summer meeting this year but we could attempt to have a club picnic someplace in a true summer month like July. Any one interested in organizing such a get-together?

1999 is an election year and we will be looking for a president and a secretary at least. The election will take place at the November meeting unless we decide to continue with a separate election meeting as we have done in the recent past. We will also need someone to organize the instructional clinic, a job done so well the past two years by Teri Ames. The clinic did not have a single open boat in it this past summer, a portend of the future makeup of the club, Im sure. One thing that makes the clinic easier for the organizer is having volunteer instructors who are already members of the American Canoe Association, because it reduces the paperwork hassle immensely. If you see yourself as a future instructor, why not join the ACA, support paddling nationwide and ease the burden on future clinic leaders.

Thanks to Paul Kempner, club member and Ski Rack employee, who organized the winter roll sessions at Twin Oaks. These sessions were a modest success -- the club lost money on the deal mainly because many members who signed up never bothered to show. Frankly this irresponsible behavior is unfathomable to me, and will certainly result in a prepay system next year, is we have the roll sessions again. What we need is someone willing to be the roll clinic manager and organize the sign-up, payment, instructors, etc. Do I have a volunteer for next year?

Some of the club members received the announcement for the Spring meeting via e-mail, the first time we have tried this approach. We hope to continue expanding this use of the Internet as more members go online. It has the potential of saving a lot of time and money, and I certainly would like to hear any comments or suggestions members might have on the subject.

Thanks to Tony Shaw for all his web site work and creating the paddling schedule, Rich Larsen for many hours spent dealing with membership and treasury issues. Mike Fullerton for producing the Bow and Stern for us, Andy Meilleur for all the trips he's organized via the club phone, Teri Ames for the clinic, as mentioned, and for organizing the successful rescue workshop last June, and Paul Kempner for his efforts securing the Twin Oaks pool.

Eric Bishop

Message from the Editor

Well, here we are at the start of another paddling season. As I write this I'm reflecting on a pretty miserable back country -ski season and hoping all that ice out there will turn into white water and clear lakes again.

There was a flurry of activity in the club when we heard the legislature was contemplating legislation to require registration for canoes and kayaks. It seems that the logic (apart from raising a lot of cash) was that such craft use waterways and access areas just like other boats and need to be policed, rescued, and kept track of. The greatest reaction seemed to be one of outrage. Why should we pay for such privileges? We don't pollute the water with two cycle oil. We don't speed around with noisy engines endangering wildlife or other people. Heck, we're mostly granola crunchers out to save the world. Why should we pay?

Why indeed? Don't our cars take up space at access areas? Don't we get as much enjoyment out of our time on the water as do those with 75 hp Mercruisers? Doesn't it cost as much to rescue 2 stranded sea kayakers as it does to rescue a power boater? True, we don't require as much supervision and enforcement as personal watercraft so maybe we shouldn't have to pay as much as motor powered craft, but is it fair that we pay nothing at all?

I don't pretend to be happy at the prospect of having to fill out a form and pay money every year to use my canoes, but I think I'd probably survive it. All the other boat owners in the state have. I'm among those who own several boats. I guess I'd be expected to register them all. A pain no doubt, but there would also be an up side.

If all the canoes and kayaks in the state were registered, we'd have a list of every paddler in the state. We'd have a well earned, paid for right to speak up in any forum on water usage, access, regulation and so forth and could wave our money around to make a point. So even if I don't think I really like the idea, I can't say it's completely unfair or without any merit.


To submit to the Bow and Stern write to:

Michael Fullerton
35 North Calais Rd.
East Calais, Vt. 05650-8067
E-mail to:


Trip Reports

Hudson Gorge: May 16, 1998

Leader: Rod Wentworth
Participants: OC-1: Andy Meilleur, Mike Smorgans, Bob Campbell; K-1: Marvie Campbell, Eric Palmer, Rod Wentworth

While the club has braved many a chilly day to paddle the Hudson Gorge in May, we were blessed with a much appreciated sunny day with air temperatures in the 80's. The water level as measured on the North Creek gage was slightly below 4 feet - a level that, combined with the weather, encouraged paddlers to "go for it" at the bus stop and other play spots. Rafts were abundant but there were few other "hard" boaters. We started out ahead of most of the rafts but they caught up to us by the time we finished the Indian River. When we finally reached the bus stop wave, we were at the tail end of the rafts. Most of them stopped to play there, after which we had it mostly to ourselves, The level was friendly and both canoe and kayak paddlers enjoyed some good side surfing. We finished the day worn-out, but smiling in the warm sun!

Lake George Adventure:

Participants: George Agnew, Jim Higgins, John King

Three intrepid V.P.C. members set off Saturday morning, Oct. 10 for a fall Lake George Adventure. The morning was raw and windy. We arrived at Sabbath Day Point, two miles below Silver Bay and launched our kayaks with a determined north wind at our backs. Our plan was to enjoy various islands that lay in our path. The first stop was at the Harbor Islands, one of which housed a lovely summer chapel. On to the Mother Bunch Islands which boasted such names as Floating Battery Island. A further paddle of two miles brought us to Big Burnt Island home of the summer ranger station. With Montcalm Point on our right we angled towards Green Island, home of a large condo and conference center. Bolton Landing proper lay, just behind this island and its causeway, out final take out point. Mileage: 15. Time: 5 hrs.

George Agnew

Hudson River Gorge: Oct. 17, 1998

Participants: Randy Allen, Eric Bishop, Paul Carlile, Kevin Eaton, Andy Meilleur: OC-1

With the Hudson at 3.0 and no release on the Indian, this promised to be a delightful stress free trip. We put in on the Indian as far down Chain Lakes road as possible. The Indian was like the Huntington at medium low level and in 20 minutes we were cruising the Hudson. It was the first time for Paul and Kevin in the Gorge. Kevin was impressed enough to run out of film after Staircase! There were still touches of bright yellow foliage high up along the steep sides of the gorge. A trip under similar conditions was run on 10/16/96 and written up for the B&S. As then, I say at this level the gorge is accessible to those who want to avoid class IV water. I hope to find such conditions again.

Andy Meilleur

Lower Mad River: Sept. 29, 1998

Participants: Tim Yarrow, K-1; Randy Allen, Andy Meilleur, Mike Smorgans, OC-1; Peggy & Chauncy Varney, OC-2

My notes don't show a river level, but memory has it a little under medium. My notes do show that we spent nearly 4 hours playing this 2 mile stretch into the Winooski River and that doesn't surprise me given the attitudes in the group. Dagger legend paddled by Peg and Chauncey was getting into eddies in the narrow gorge below the dam. After some routine play leading up to the waterfall drop Randy and Tim focused in on the more exciting horseshoe drop on river right. Randy had not tried this for a long time, but he must have made the plans during that hiatus because the result was the smoothest run ever. Randy stands 3 for 5 on the horseshoe. Tim's approach with the kayak looked just as good but once he hit the pool the river treated him differently. Perhaps the lower volume boat or angle caused it to submerge completely and resurface bottom side up. Fortunately only the kayak was pulled back under the waterfall and. circulated four or five times. The group worked well to reassemble itself for the final run to the takeout. There is a Mad river gauge in Moretown, now accessible though the intemet, and I list some comparisons. Randy's gauge is painted on the ledge just upstream of the Lover's Lane Bridge, now closed due to its deteriorating condition.

		Moretown	Randy's gauge
 		 3.25 	 	3.75 (low)
 		 3.5 	 	4.25 (med)
 		 3.75 	 	5.0 (high)
 		 4.25 	 	6.5 (very high)

Andy Meilleur

Ed. Note: (if you havent done this on a warm afternoon after a good rain, do it!)

Great Deals!

Dagger Crossfire, red, with skirt and paddle (no paddle description). $500 or best offer. Oneill shorty wetsuit, size 6, almost new. $75 or swap for other gear?
Kathy Boyer 453-2248

Experienced Wave Sport Lazer
Good beginner boat for small adult.
$400 includes flotation.
Medium sprayskirt (used 1 season) $35.
90 degree offset paddle, $35
All good condition. Negotiable.
Becki Bates
(802) 492-3406

Mad River Cyclone, 15' O.C.
Perception saddle for solo paddling.
New outwales. Responsive big water boat, originally designed as tandem slalom canoe. Can be seen in Tunbridge. $450, no floats, or $600 fully outfitted.
Kevin Eaton (802) 889-9483

20 foot Old Town, wood and original canvas, needs some repair. $375
Lateen sail rig with mahogany leeboards available, additional cost.

20 foot Templeton made by Blanchard of Greenville, ME. V.G. cedar and polypropylene $850
Clyde Smith: (518) 962-4859

1989 Toyota Corolla Sedan, 5 spd. A.C., cassette, 2 winter tires w/rims, new clutch, new struts, new exhaust, major tune-up last spring. Rust free, little use since last summer. 205,000 miles, but drives like only 1/3 that much. $2900 or make an offer.

Also Canon AE1 35mm camera. Just overhauled by Lezot Camera in Burlington. $200
Eric Bishop (802) 899-1865

Legislative Update

A bill to require registration of canoes and kayaks did not nake it in the legislature, but may well show up again later. If this is something you want to follow, look it up, along with other legislation at:

Trips Schedule -- Spring 1999

SunMar 7VPC Spring MeetingEric Bishop899-1865easy
SatMar 27Wells RiverRicky Battistoni893-4655nov-int WW
SunMar 28Little RiverJohn Wolfe244-8673int WW
SatApr 3 Upper Mad R.Tony Shaw879-1655nov WW or White?
SatApr 101st Br. WhiteKevin Eaton889-9483int WW
SatApr 10White R.Mike Fullerton456-8701nov WW
SunApr 1121st Sugarbush TriathlonSugarbush800-517-4247nov WW run-paddle-bike-ski
SunApr 11New Haven(Bristol)Tony Shaw879-1655int-adv WW
Wedevenings Mad RiverLowell Stephens802-496-3127int-adv WW awaiting ice out
SunApr 11Ammonoosuc (NH)Andy Meilleur878-3008int-adv WW
SatApr 10 Mad River (NH)Tim Yarrow476-7972adv WW or Pemi or Swift
SunApr 11E. Br. Pemigewasset (NH)John Wolfe244-8673adv WW
Wedevenings Lower LamoilleRich Larsen878-6828nov-int WW beginning 4/21
SatApr 17Upper LamoilleRich Larsen878-6828int WW
SatApr 17N. Br. LamoilleRandy Allen223-3771adv WW
SatApr 17Gilman Falls RodeoTom Yurista/Wright Hartman388-9750adv WW Old Town ME
SunApr 18 Huntington or Mad (Vt)Eric Bishop899-1865nov-int
SunApr 18 Black River (VT)Jay Strane878-9549int-adv WW
SatApr 24New Haven LedgesTom Yurista/Wright Hartman388-9750adv-exp WW serious drops
Sat-SunApr 24-25West River Weekendopen899-1872int-adv WW release
SatMay 1S. Br. Grass (NY)Chad Chamberlain247-3891adv-exp WW call early
SunMay 2Lower LamoilleMark Willett985-9098nov-int WW
SunMay 2N. Br. LamoilleJohn Wolfe244-8673adv WW
SatMay 8Lower Hudson/Schroon (NY)Rich Larsen878-6828int WW
SunMay 9Fiddlehead SlalomRay Ingram879-4286nov-int WW volunteers needed
Sat-SunMay 8-9 Saranac R. WeekendRicky Battistoni893-4655int-adv WW
SatMay 15Lower WhiteKevin Eaton889-9483nov WW
SunMay 16Hudson Gorge (NY)Tony Shaw879-1655adv WW or Boreas?
SatMay 22 Browns R.Eric Bishop899-1865nov FW/QW we'll pickup trash?
Fri-SunJun 11-13White/Pemi/???Faith Knapp649-5106nov WW with AMC - call ASAP

new line


new line

  1. ww = whitewater // FW = flatwater // Vt area code: 802 //message phone: 899-1872 Password 899
  2. nov = max Class II, int = max Class III, adv = max Class IV, exp = Class IV+ See Intl River Rating Scale
  3. Winter pool sessions begin soon (space lim., fee charged). Call 879-1655 (Tony Shaw) or signup online.
  4. Contact the trip organizer for information about each trip.
  5. Listed trips may be changed or canceled as water, weather, or interest dictates.
  6. Plans for impromptu trips can be relayed thru the trip organizer, message phone, or online.
  7. Please give 1-2 weeks notice for overnight trips to have a say in pre-planning.
  8. Car-pooling on long (and short) trips is encouraged!
  9. Paddle the Lower Lamoille Wed. evenings (nov-int WW) on 4/21, 4/28, 5/5, 5/12. Call Rich Larsen - - 878-6828.
  10. The AROUND VERMONT IN 30 RIVERS promotion is underway!!!

Danger exists for participants in canoeing, kayaking, tubing, and other activities organized or advertised by the Vermont Paddlers Club. Such participation may result in illness or injury due to accidents, the forces of nature, or other causes not foreseeable. Such illness and injury may include disease, strains, sprains, fractures, dislocations, paralysis, and/or death. Possible injuries may cause serious and permanent disability.

By your participation in any Vermont Paddlers Club activity you knowingly assume the risks arising out of that activity. In so doing you release, hold harmless and indemnify the Vermont Paddlers Club and its agents, officers and employees from any and all claims and suits for bodily injury, property damage, wrongful death, loss of services or otherwise which may arise out of your participation in canoeing, kayaking, tubing and other activities, whether or not such claims or suits arise from negligent acts or omissions by the organizers and conductors of this activity, their employees or volunteers, another participant, any other person or from any other cause.

Paddle Smart

Have Fun

Come Home

Dam Release Schedules for 1999

Deerfield R. Releases 	Monroe Bridge (Dryway)		Fife Brook
							April 10,11,14-18,21-23,28-30
			May 23,29,30			May 1,2,8,9,13-16,20-23,27-30
			June 5,6,13,18,20,25,26		June 10-13,17,19,20,23-27
			July 3,4,10,11,16,17,24,30,31	July 3,7-11,17,18,21-25,28-31
			August 1,6,7,14,15,20,21,28,29	Aug. 1,4-8,12-15,19-22,26-29
			Sept. 4,11,12,19		Sept. 1-5,8-12,18,19,22-24
			Oct 9,10			Oct. 2,3,6-10,13-15,16,17,20,21,22

Dead River releases 1300 cfs June 19,20,27 July 2,18 Aug 15 Sept 4 3500 cfs Sept 18 1800 cfs May 29 June 18,26 July 3 Aug 8,14 5500 cfs May 30, June 5,12 Sept 5 Oct2 2400 cfs July 17 Aug 7 7000 cfs May 8,15

Phone numbers: Call ahead to confirm the release!!

For the Deerfield: 1-888-FLO-PHONE

Sponsored by U.S. Generating Co. Updates daily at 1700 HRS

For the Dead: Try Webb's Shuttle Service. 1-207-663-2214 Here's where you have to call to set up a shuttle reservation or arrange to camp at Webb's campground.

Hudson: 1-518-465-2016 You'll get a recording giving all the gauge readings for the Hudson-Black water regulating district.

OR: Check the VPC website for links to USGS river gauge information.

Membership Application and Waiver
Click here for a printable/mailable version.

VPC membership application/update

New Membership. <-----CIRCLE ONE-----> Update/Renewal

Family trips.
Lessons (canoe).
Flatwater. Camping. Lessons (kayak).
Other (specify) ________________________________________________________
Beginner. Beginner.
Intermediate. Intermediate.
Advanced. Advanced.
Max. class paddled:_______ Max. class paddled:_______

I may be willing to...
  1. Be a trip organizer.
  2. Be a tandem partner.
  3. Promote conservation of paddling resources.
  4. Report level for the following river(s)_________________________
  5. Volunteer/help to_________________________________________




state________ zip code_______________


This is a printable membership form and VPC waiver. Please read and sign the waiver, then mail both with your membership fee ($8 per individual OR family) to:

Rich Larsen VPC Membership Chairman (802)878-6828
11 Discovery Road, Essex Junction VT 05452

Make checks payable to VPC

NOTE: All adult members must sign and submit a VPC Waiver and Release of Liability.



I realize that danger exists in my participation in canoeing, kayaking, tubing, and other activities organized by the Vermont Paddlers Club.

Although I am in good health and able to participate in such activities, I realize that such participation may result in illness or injury due to accidents, the forces of nature, or other causes not foreseeable. Such illness and injury may include disease, strains, sprains, fractures, dislocations, paralysis, and/or death. Possible injuries may cause serious and permanent disability. By my participation in this activity I hereby knowingly assume the risks arising out of that activity.

I also, on behalf of myself, my personal representatives and my heirs, hereby agree to release, hold harmless and indemnify the Vermont Paddlers Club and its agents, officers and employees from any and all claims and suits for bodily injury, property damage, wrongful death, loss of services or otherwise which may arise out of my participation in canoeing, kayaking, tubing and other activities, whether or not such claims or suits arise from negligent acts or omissions by the organizers and conductors of this activity, their employees or volunteers, another participant, any other person or from any other cause.


NAME: ___________________________________________________________

SIGNATURE: ______________________________________________________

AGE: _____________ DATE: ________________________________________


SIGNATURE: ______________________________________________________

DATE: ____________________

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