Monday, August 22, 2011

Salem Harbor Sojourn

Work brought me to Danvers today and upon finishing the job, I headed to Winter Island Park to welcome the incoming tide.  My plan was to ascend the Forest River and on the way across the harbor, I decided to take a closer look at the schooner "Friendship" (seen at left).  The smell of food cooking drew me further into the the Pickering Wharf area until I ran out of water to paddle in.  There was a fair bit of trash floating in this area, most of it up against the wall by the Registry of Deeds.
Leaving this part of the harbor, I headed past Forest River Park to the spot where the river enters.  The flood tide was entering its last hour when I passed under the old railroad line to Marblehead that is now a rail trail.  Just beyond the rail trail bridge is the much lower Lafayette Street (Rt. 114) bridge and something didn't look right...
The portals were blocked by some kind of panels.  I'm not sure if the blocking is related to construction which appears to be underway or if passage is always blocked.  This makes 2 ascents in a row that were blocked: Fort Meadow Brook and now the Forest River. 
So, after briefly considering a portage, I headed back to the harbor where it appeared the Spanish Amada was awaiting me...

The breeze which had been busy earlier in the afternoon was now beginning to lay down and a beautiful evening was in the making.  My sojourn came too soon to an end.
Once back at Winter Island, my trash haul of 21 pieces posed for a photo...
There were 7 recyclable containers (3 redeemable) and 14 pieces of miscellaneous rubbish such as styrofoam, balloons, and plastic bags.  YTD total stands at 4363.

This was my 4th time launching at Winter Island Park this season and today the attendant at the gate wanted to charge me twice the fee that I'd been charged the other 3 times.  His logic was that only vehicles with boats on trailers are entitled to the "Boat Launch" rate.  Because my boat is on my roof I should pay double?  Hopefully, someone in charge will establish a set charge for kayakers using the boat launch.  The double fee he wanted to charge me would result in my launching elsewhere.

Note:  I have since (8/23) been informed by Winter Island Park management that the original "Boat Launch" rate is the correct one.  This was good news as I find this facility to be an ideal one. 

3 comments:

Ellen said...

Al, you could try parking at Salem Willows across from Dead Horse Beach, and then launching from that beach. I think parking is free (though I could be wrong about that) and you don't have to pay admission like at Winter Island. There are various parking areas but you want the one across from Dead Horse Beach.

Suasco Al said...

Thanks Ellen, I'll look into that. Maybe I'll grab one of those 'chop suey' sandwiches folks keep telling me about!

rigging training said...

The waters are filled with history. This once was a bustling seaport during the colonial times.