August 10, 2013

Allen Afield: After paddling up the river, just go with the flow

By Ken Allen

(Continued from page 1)

Which reminds me -- strangely -- of bicycling. It's sometimes easier to push a bicycle up a steep hill than pedal it -- cross-training so to speak. When poling, it's sometimes much less work to pull the canoe up a steep chute than pole it. However, our pride keeps many of us on a bicycle or in a canoe rather than get off the bicycle or out of the canoe to walk or pull.

One morning on busy Route 27 several years ago, my bicycle was whizzing me down a steep hill and I dropped my cell phone, which bounced into the grass beyond the pavement. I started pushing the bicycle back up the hill (on the wrong side of the road), looking for the phone, and it seemed as if half of Belgrade saw my ignominious trek. I still hear about it.

On these Sandy River outings with my daughters, we'd often have a picnic, an elaborate one with baked chicken, Brie, French bread, fresh fruit and iced sports drinks. What a treat in a shady spot on a hot August afternoon. Amenities like that create lifetime memories.

The beauty of poling upstream is obvious. This plan gets the hard work out of the way early and then the trip back to the vehicle uses the current to propel the canoe -- a leisurely business.

Ken Allen, of Belgrade Lakes, a writer, editor and photographer, may be reached at:

KAllyn800@yahoo.com

 

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