Saturday, January 7, 2012

Late to the New Year’s Day Paddle Party

    New Year’s Day we were able to get out paddling!  I’d like to say this is a time honored tradition, but in reality we’ve just lucked out with two warm still January 1st’s in a row.

   This year we headed down to Bucksport, neatly avoiding the issue of tide rips just north of the paper mill by launching at low tide.  We paddled along the backside of Verona Island a bit before looping the harbor.

   Below are some of my favorite shots of the day (and some related trivia):
    Foam on the water, steam in the sky.  The paper mill is barely visible in this shot, though it's steam rises over the hotel.  I always enjoy asking folks to name the paper mill in Bucksport.  Initially built in 1928 as the Seaboard Paper Company, it’s had five owners since, listed in this Maine Ahead article.  

   Mooring Gears.  I’m not sure what company provided these gears, but they are huge and I love them.

   Looking across to the old Prospect-Bucksport ferry landing.  Before there was the Waldo Hancock Bridge, a ferry brought five cars at a time across.  There’s a film of the old ferry in action at the Maine Memory Network.  (Page opens to a photo, the film clip is lower)  Unfortunately I can’t quite read all the signs on the clip.  

   A different angle on Fort Knox.  In 1887,  Sergeant Leopold Hegyi  became sole guardian of Fort Knox.  His duties included walking the grounds each day to assess the condition of the fort.  That assignment ended in July of 1900 with his passing, but his dedication to the fort continues to keep the hopes of ghost hunters alive.  

   Heading back under the double bridge span to Verona Island.  The old Waldo-Hancock bridge (in green and rust) has been re-purposed as a peregrine falcon and osprey nesting site.

   It was wonderful to be on the water on New Year’s Day.  The lighting is always very dramatic.  And I remember thinking how much better my back felt as the trip went on.  But, alas, that was apparently an illusion, because when I went to get up on Tuesday, I discovered I couldn’t walk without staggering.   So I've spent the week on various home remedies, and things are much better now, and hopefully will be for the rest of the winter... 


  1. Sorry to hear about your back. :( I hope you have a quick recovery!

  2. A cool paddle and a neat way to spend New Year's! I hope your back is feeling better soon. We're skiing up here! It's been cold.

  3. Enjoyed the link to that very informative article on Verso in Maine Ahead. Hard to imagine producing 50 tons of paper per hour!
    Hope your back recovers soon. Having bulged a disk once, I had to find a new technique for getting into and out of my kayak. As I recall, physical therapy provided simple floor exercises that helped improve things considerably.

  4. I hope you're wearing some sort of survival suit in case of a dunking!

  5. Thanks all for your wishes! Mark has been teaching me several back exercises. Fortunately, (or not) it turns out that sitting at my desk all day actually doesn't bother my back much. Good news as work is picking up, and the temps are dropping.
    My in-laws are very jealous of the snow in Canada, and are hoping for a large storm here this week. I'm glad to hear others are out enjoying winter!