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Thread: My boy's first row

  1. #1
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    Default My boy's first row

    After two months of staying in, nothing beats getting out for a row in the sunshine. My three-year-old son kindly accompanied me.



    We put in to an estuary I'd rather not name directly - it gets enough traffic as it is without showing up in searches. If you're interested, you can find it easily by looking for a body of water near Valley Ford, CA. It's a six mile paddle from the only legal public put-in to the ocean:


    But we didn't get to the ocean today. The wind was up, and we were too busy.






    Afternoon winds tend toward the strong here, particularly when the weather is as warm as it's been. We sailed home without showing a stitch of canvas.



    My boy loved the trip and is already asking about the next one. It's going to be a busy summer.
    Last edited by pez_leon; 05-24-2020 at 01:26 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    You made me weep. One of my goals as a young father with 4 active kids was that they could grow up on the water, and learn boats- rowing, sailing, handle an outboard skiff, etc.
    Alas, a growing boatshop business and the ever present need to provide for the family pushed that wish aside...maybe I can get with the grandkids.
    Good on you sir, the lad will never forget these trips!

  3. #3
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Give that kid a caulking mallet to play with! He is one lucky little boy to have a father that cares enough to teach him to love the sea just as he himself does! Bravo Sir!
    Jay

  4. #4
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Wonderful. We do not have children, but my father was an outdoorsman who took my brother and I with him from an early age. I worry about a generation who often seems uninterested in anything not on a screen.

    BTW I know that spot, but have never seen another rowboat on it before (many kayaks). The narrow canyon slots have the highest wind I ever managed to row into.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    I know that body of water very well, but only from the shore. I have never figured out how to launch there. I'm glad you and your son put it to such good use.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    The little guy is just so cute!
    Good for you to introducing him to boating at a young age.
    Looks like you had fun and also gave Mommy a break.
    I can remember having my own out on the water at that age thirty-something years ago.
    I was born on a wooden boat that I built myself.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Wonderful!
    - Chris

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Brings back a lot of memories.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Love it, read a book and have a sleep. Hes made for boating.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Be careful! My Dad built a canoe when I was four and look what happened: I spent a lifetime on the water!
    Thanks for sharing.

  11. #11
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    Default

    Great stuff!

    Kevin


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Kids & boats are a real treat. My two boys & I built our first sailboat together when they were 10 & 15, and it remains one our favorite memories. Now the grandbabies get to use that same boat... and some of the others.

    Enjoy this time!!! When they say it passes quickly... it is not at all hyperbole.

    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  13. #13
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Makes me want to be young with young kids again. Maybe I can borrow some kids and take them wolf watching in the big dory next summer.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Kids and boats were made for each other4C9308EF-CBE2-4456-B16D-5DA04BE495B0.jpg

  15. #15
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    What a treat these pictures and stories are. I'll be sure to post pictures from the next trips.
    Rgthom, I was intrigued by the picture of your boat at that launch site. Is that the same trailer-launched walkabout you're currently outfitting for electric power? I've only hand launched here and I would have said that this spot isn't trailer accessible, but you seem to have proven otherwise!

    James

  16. #16
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Quote Originally Posted by pez_leon View Post
    What a treat these pictures and stories are. I'll be sure to post pictures from the next trips.
    Rgthom, I was intrigued by the picture of your boat at that launch site. Is that the same trailer-launched walkabout you're currently outfitting for electric power? I've only hand launched here and I would have said that this spot isn't trailer accessible, but you seem to have proven otherwise!

    James
    That boat is a Gig Harbor Whitehall, smaller than the Walkabout but I do remember a struggle to launch and retrieve off a trailer. The trailer for the Walkabout is modified with a set of rollers at the end, so it can launch with wheels at the water's edge. Now you have brought this place up, I may have to take a trip over and try it. So much for keeping the crowds away....

    -Rick

    Trailer rollers:

  17. #17
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Rick, now that you're thinking about going, I'd say go now. I timed my last trip for high tide but after having been I suspect I needn't have done so - the water level seems very high and constant. I'm sure the bar is closed, but that's almost always true. I can't quite figure out where all the water is coming from. It's a far cry from the usual muddy ditch in a cow pasture!

    James

  18. #18
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    From your picture the bar must be closed. Most of these CA coastal stream estuaries are like this, high flow and open during the winter storms, then a lake forms in spring as the bar closes off. By late summer it's a muddy creek (and the wind is howling in the afternoon). The Russian River is better as it is lake fed all year.

    The hillsides around are cattle country, as you know, with cattle fences separating the properties. About where your video is taken, in a similar lake condition, I was also bare pole sailing until slamming into a sunken fencepole. No damage, but a very cautious and slower return after that.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    I built a bunch of kids dinghies back in the day, 4 or 5 for them as they grew. They spent their 'lives' on a boat in a weekend warrior kind of way.
    This thread keys one particular memory where the boy had been sent off, I looked over to see him riding station right in close to the rocks going up and down a foot or so in the swell. He and a big black gull back a few ft away having a stare off. Could have been 3 or 4 I suppose.
    And the funniest one was our daughter took off for the beach in hers, we were a couple of hundred metres off. Monitoring her of course and she was meeting her friend there, the parents were there too. Anyway , there was more of a break than expected, she caught the wave and rolled the boat. Like a little drowned rat she just strode up the beach trying to tow this 5 ft boat behind her.


    She's in lock down in London.
    The boy got a degree in maritime engineering and works doing his apprenticeship for a local naval architecture firm, something sunk in to that one.
    Last edited by John B; 05-25-2020 at 06:07 PM.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    More rows, more photos, still under the same title - "My boy's first row". How could there be a second first row? Simple: add my other boy!
    My older son (the young man pictured in the first post), now a grizzled old salt, kindly welcomed his mammothrept brother aboard.



    Turns out, the four of us fit just fine in the whitehall for a picnic-length outing





    The older boy has truly taken to the water. Here you see him on an early morning breakfast row, just the two of us. We're out of the excellent, virtuous sourdough I've learned to bake in the pandemic: the poor boy's morning PB&J had to lay between an awful commercial white fluffy sweet hot-dog bun.



    "Dada, I love three things: noodles, this bread, and sailing"
    Then he told me I should build a sailboat. Sold.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Great Success!! Huzzah!!
    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
    16' W. Simmons Mattinicus double ender ​Matty

  22. #22
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Tremendous!

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Fantastic stuff, pez! I am looking forward to getting my boys (10 and 13) out in our little fleet of El Toros this summer.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Quote Originally Posted by Gib Etheridge View Post
    Makes me want to be young with young kids again. Maybe I can borrow some kids and take them wolf watching in the big dory next summer.
    My 13 year old asks where he can sign up? He loves your thread, has a sense of
    seamanship and loves wolves!

  25. #25
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Quote Originally Posted by nrs5000 View Post
    My 13 year old asks where he can sign up? He loves your thread, has a sense of
    seamanship and loves wolves!

    You need to join the TSCA. There is a very active Bay area group.


    https://www.tscasacramento.com/
    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
    16' W. Simmons Mattinicus double ender ​Matty

  26. #26
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Quote Originally Posted by BBSebens View Post
    You need to join the TSCA. There is a very active Bay area group.


    https://www.tscasacramento.com/
    Thanks, I have it in mind to join as I am hoping to launch my biscayne 14 this fall.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Swallows and Amazons for sure!
    Jay
    P.S. I can't stop smiling when I see your wonderful family pez leon!

  28. #28
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    Default Re: My boy's first row



    Back at it for another weekend! We made it to the ocean.





    On previous excursions the Manager took his ease in the luxurious aft suite. This time, he chose to nap in the v-berth:

  29. #29
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Another day, another estuary.



    We went all the way up to Mendocino for a row in the Big River. Of everything that happened that day, I'll remember the drive best. It's georgous country. We drove in and out of coastal fog thick enough to drip from the trees. In the midst of a curvy bit the manager reported that he "felt wuf". Not three seconds later he spewed gallons of undigested banana vomit. In cleaning him, we got about 10% of the fluids onto wipes, with the remainder distributed evenly over me. Anyway, what is there to do but carry on?
    The navagable parts of the Big river are strongly influenced by the tide. We caught the tail end of the flood. Looking up we saw marshes, redwoods, and red-tailed hawks. Looking down we saw cold saltwater coursing over sand, carrying seaweed far upstream. The ebb took us home.


  30. #30
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    Ah yes. I remember the days of uncontained bodily fluids. Such fun! Sounds like a good trip.
    - Chris

    Life is short. Go boating now!

  31. #31
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    Default Re: My boy's first row

    If you are willing to do the drive--the shutdown has reduced traffic--one of the best places I know to take kids in the Bay Area is the Franklin Wildlife Preserve (see map below). The parking lot is a 200 yard hoof across a cement sidewalk to a dock that really is in a swamp, but a five minute row brings you to the Consumness River. Whether you go right or left out of the wildlife park, you have miles of easy rolling river and much animal life to see. If you go in the late evening you will see otters everywhere. There are quite a few beaver as well which will startle you when they slap the water in alarm. It is a great place to take kids. I have never seen any two legged animals in an aggressive state. I take my Annapolis Wherry on a small trailer and a Harbor Freight furniture roller right onto the trail. I hand push the trailer out to the dock and stow it in the bush. http://www.cosumnes.org/
    Re-naming straits as necessary.

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