Sunday, November 09, 2008
Boney River Trip
Led another Musconetcong Watershed Association group of about 14 paddlers from Point Mountain Bridge to Hampton Borough Park.
The water level was only about 2.07 cfs (1.89') at Bloomsbury and I don't believe that I've ever done this stretch at this low of a level. It looked completely different in places and that is one of the nice aspects of paddling. You can do the same section repeatedly but at different levels it can present different challenges and looks. The 200-300 cfs level is a good place for novice paddlers who want to shorten the learning curve for river reading skills. Only downside is that this time of year the westward flowing Musky presents severe glare problems - it's difficult to read the nuances of rocky shoals and gravelly shallows in the blinding sunlight.
This as a great group of paddlers, most of whom have never paddled this part of the river and a few have never been on the Musky. We had but two impromptu swimmers, one of whom had an encounter with a rock while turned broadside to it, the other just suddenly fell in for no apparent reason, which is usually how I do my "swimming." (we fortunately had Chris & Sue running sweep and they made the first swimmer's experience much less traumatizing)
This was a relatively warm day and surely the cold weather will set in and make for fewer paddling opportunities. This time of year we take what we can get and with elevated river levels likely as we enter the wet season I expect that there some of us will be carving the water at least once or twice each of the upcoming winter months.