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I fell in love with paddling in 2008 during my stint as a staff photographer at the Gannett rag “Press & Sun Bulletin” newspaper. Photographer and gentleman by the name of Chuck Haupt peaked my interest in paddling.  As a matter of fact Chuck has been paddling for years, maybe even decades, quite possible for centuries “Sorry Chuck I couldn’t resist”. Over the course of these six years I have taken some great trips with friends and family. I even competed in the General Clinton Canoe Regatta (Sort of) and have met some wonderful people who to this day I still call my friend. Over the last two years I have missed paddling as I have been focused on my running. I never thought I would love running as much as I do but I just cannot help it. The running community is just awesome! So many people with the hugest of hearts and the spirit..

If you take a moment to read the “About ME” section of this blog you’ll notice that I have an affection for the Adirondack’s, Vermont and New Hampshire. Some of that affection stems from childhood but a a good deal comes from paddling. I have to tell you sitting on a placid pond or lake in the White Mountains of New Hampshire watching the sunrise is nothing short of awesome. If you asked me where God was born I’d tell you in the White Mountains. The erie call of the Loon or the crashing of a Moose through the woods can really put life into perspective. Michael and Max have accompanied me and my friend Ian Clark on several of these outings. I remember one trip to Vermont in 2012, the boys were exhausted it had been a long day. Ian and I wanted to get out at sunset in hopes of photographing a moose. The boys wanted to crash at Ian’s so off we went. Sadly no moose that evening. Under the cover of darkness I’m slowly paddling as I hear faint Pft, Pft, Pft, right next to my boat. Quickly I click on my headlamp only to find a family of Otters swimming right along side of me. The Otters would hang with me for a while before returning to their own business. The boys were so jealous as Michael is an Otter fiend!

It was the summer of 2012 and we were spending time in the Adirondack town of Lake Placid, New York. 4AM and I’m quietly sneaking (Bull in a China Shop) out of our hotel room, kayak loaded, headed to Lake Placid in order to pay witness to the sunrise over 4,865′ Whiteface Mountain. In awe of what my eyes were drinking in I could hardly wait to return and explain to Julie and the boys of my experience. Fast forward to summer of 2013, Julie and Max purchased their own kayak’s filling out the families soon to be wilderness adventures. Closer to home, I enjoy making early morning trips to Skaneateles Lake in New York’s Finger Lake Region in order to watch the sunrise. Last time I went I was the only one on the lake as far as I could tell. Talk about peaceful.

Whether sunrise or sunset, New York, New England or any other place of solitude you might just find me paddling my kayak or canoe. As I take these few moments to pen my thoughts I want to give a huge shout out to my wife and sons for rekindling my passion for the paddle.

Chuck Haupt and Ian Clark are both amazing photographers. If you get a few moments visit their websites.

http://www.uppervalleyphotos.com         http://www.chuckhaupt.com

Michael & Max paddling and splashing on Long Pond. Image © Joe Geronimo

Michael & Max paddling and splashing on Long Pond.
Image © Joe Geronimo

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