Seven kayakers and three open-boaters lucked into a sunny, temperate spring day for the second official Thursday paddle of 2019 on the Lower Gunpowder (Route 1 to Route 40 for half the group, and on to Mariner Point Park for the other half). Kayak: Tony Allred, Mark Brenneman, Alf Cooley, Lindsay Fundakowski, Richmond Hall, Bob Maxey, John Snitzer. Canoe: Rich Conde, Larry Lempert, Jordan Taylor. Trip coordinator: Larry, who claims as his most notable achievement having arranged shuttles for two alternative takeouts without anyone getting left behind or ending up at the wrong place.
A great run was had by all at a one-foot level on the Route 1 bridge gauge, corresponding to 747 cfs on the American Whitewater virtual gauge. Interestingly, on a Thursday trip back in August, one foot correlated to 987 cfs on the AW virtual gauge—a good reminder that the virtual level reflects multiple conditions (on several streams and a reservoir) whose actual impact will vary to some extent. At any rate, one foot is a great level, with good padding everywhere but not too pushy. The only downside was heavy traffic coming and/or going for many of us.
[Actually, there was one casualty: a tie-down strap that flew off the roof of my car while driving to the takeout. Two straps that were inadvertently left on the roof and took flight were actually recovered on the return drive. But when I used them to tie down my boat at the end of the day, the metal buckle of one of them snapped when I cinched it down. Probably it got run over; whatever happened, it did not survive its injuries.]
- Larry Lempert