I am a grandmother paddling alone over 2,500 miles from Maine to Guatemala. Along the way I will be:
- telling the story of the children who live in the Guatemala City garbage dump community
- honoring their entrepreneurial mothers
- talking about the success of the Safe Passage model school and
- raising funds for additional grades for the school.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Paddle Day 36: NYC on the Horizon, Company on the Water and Injury Complication

Jeff Blumenfild gives Deb a farewell salute
The big thrill today was seeing NYC on the horizon all day!  It's only two more paddling days until I am in Manhattan!  I'm making progress and I'm so excited.

I was joined on the water for an hour by Jeff Blumenfeld, editor of Expedition News.  He wrote the book on getting sponsors for expeditions - literally - Get Sponsored: A Funding Guide for Explorers, Adventurers, and Would-Be World Travelers.  Jeff said I had a record number of equipment sponsors for my expedition.  That's better than the other record I think I'll get - for the slowest expedition!

I also had a brief encounter with a serious kayak racer, Robin.
Deb and Robin selfie
But another injury has thrown my NYC plans into jeopardy.  This time it's not my injury.  It's worse.  It's the kayaker who was going to lead me through the infamous Hell Gate into Manhattan.  He has had to bail.  I spent a stressful afternoon trying to decide what to do.  I poured over the current charts for hours to see if I could be at Hell Gate at slack water and minimize the problems.  But that doesn't seem possible.  Two options remained:
1) Paddle alone into Manhattan via Hell Gate at a  non-optimal time - but that route is too rough and thus unsafe for me to paddle alone.
2) Get a ride for me and my kayak the 5 miles across the Bronx and paddle down the Hudson - but that seams a little like cheating.
So I sent out some emails to other folks for help.  Two experienced local kayakers offered to paddle with me, and one suggested an idea I like.  We could avoid Hell Gate and other turbulence by paddling the little ditch of Bronx Kill,and then go north on the Harlem River and then south on the Hudson.  The trip would be 30 miles instead of 22, but seems a much better option to me.  Now we will each look over the current charts to see if it is doable.

Last night I was with Totney and Rick Benson.   Not only were they wonderful hosts, but Rick has been helping me to find hosts all along Connecticut and New Jersey.   Thanks!!
Deb, Rick and Totney selfie
Had a great dinner at a local boating club with my host Betsey and her kayaking friends.  Autumn is in the air and we ate inside instead of out on the deck.  Folks were talking about the leaves turning.  I'm starting to worry that I will not get south soon enough and might turn into a  kayaksicle.
Deb and Betsey
Paddle Day: 36                                                          Date: Sept. 14, 2014
Start: Rowayton                                                        End: Greenwich
Distance: 12 miles                                                     Total distance: 413.43 miles
Max speed:  5.3 mph                                                 Moving ave.: 3.3 mph
Kayak storage:  Indian Harbor Yacht Club                   Host: Betsey Kreuter

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