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  1. #1
    Senior Member XexorZ's Avatar
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    Round Valley Res. NJ, April 2nd -> 4th

    I'll be going on another kayak-camping trip this weekend at Round Valley (same place I went to late last year in This Thread.)

    Our party will consist of my Mother's Husband Frank, my Cousin Rich and Myself.

    I'll be in my BB, Frank will be using my Fiancee's BB and my cuz will be in his "super-death mega cool I have no idea what it is" fabric hammock (has no idea what it is).

    Looks like clear skies and good weather (highs in the low 70s and overnight lows in the high 40s).

    Trip report (and hopefully some pictures) to follow!
    Buy Tea at Jennifer's Tea Garden ( My Wife's Place )

  2. #2
    Senior Member Perkolady's Avatar
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    Looking forward to your report! I miss that place!

    If you ever get the chance, plan on going there around the end of April/beginning of May. All the pink dogwoods are in bloom and sometimes the loons are there. Makes for a nice sound experience

  3. #3
    Senior Member XexorZ's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delay in the report - things got busy and I lost track of things (nothing new!)

    Our trip was a major success!

    We started off Friday morning and loaded up the gear heading out to round valley to secure a site. We ultimately settled on site 71 which is a GREAT site for hanging (plenty of right-sized trees and not level so it keeps the ground dwellers away).

    (Interesting cold-water pre-trip happening...)
    We arrived at the waters edge sometime around 2:00 and started to load the boats and suit up (the water was really cold.. I didn't measure the temp but if I had to guess I'd say well below 50 F Frank and I wore our Dry Suits. Rich wore his skin and relied on us saving his backside if he went on the wet side of the water's surface).

    No sooner than I got my suit on, two other paddlers set off in much smaller recreational kayaks without any cold water protection. A few minutes later I looked up when I heard a splash and the one guy was turned over about 50 yards off the dock. He was a very large guy (which would make reentry difficult) and he clearly didn't know how to try. I shouted out some instructions from the shore that were ignored (oh well!) He insisted on dragging his boat behind him which made his progress very slow. His buddy stayed with him during his slow swim towards shore. In the last 100 feet he started to show serious signs of trouble so I decided to jump in and lend a hand before he went into arrest... Convinced him to drop his boat and helped him to shore. He would have totally made it without my help but I'm pretty sure he was thankful we were there. The air temp was around 75 or so by this time and I had him lay out on the hot asphalt to regain some core temp. His buddy got him to the dry car and all was well.

    I go into all this detail to stress the importance of cold-water safety... People think because its a nice day out that the water is safe. Not so. Even in my drysuit wearing proper insulation underneath I was quite cold in the water. My hands cramped up very quickly so I can imagine that this guy was in a world of hurt... Be safe out there...

    (Back to report!)

    As you may know, the only way to get to the sites on this lake are either by boat or a minimum 3.5 mile hike. Our site was more like a 6 mile hike so a-boating-we-will-go!

    Frank and I took his Zest Two - its a Two person sit-on-top kayak by Ocean Kayaks - a really excellent and quite LONG boat but it has a tendency to like to go into the wind (weather helm) so we need to get a rudder on that thing for the next trip if we plan on using it. Rich was in his Old-Town Castine - a great sit-in boat which tracks well (I own one of those as well - nearly indestructible!)

    The paddle out was speedy - it took us roughly an hour to paddle the ~3 miles to our site. Upon arrival we unloaded our gear, got out of our water gear and started setting up camp. Rich and Frank hung their rigs ~near the fire and I hung mine as close to the water as I could get it. Frank used my WBBB and Rich used a (unknown) nylon hammock. I was in my Fiancee's WBBB (wow I'm glad I got her that as a Gift ;-) )

    There was a 0% chance of rain in the forecast so we decided to forgo the tarps (had them in reserve if we changed or minds). The moon and stars we're well worth the minimal risk! Saw numerous shooting stars - highly recommended to those who can trust (GASP) the weather reports

    Temp dropped down to ~45 both nights and there was not a complaint to be found. Frank and Rich are both converts and Frank will be giving Brandon a call sometime soon to order a WBBB of his own.

    I was in my Military Sleep System and feel comfortable using it down to this temp without any underquilt - any lower would have likely been less comfortable for ME although totally "doable" down at least another 10F assuming no wind. (YMMV!)

    Frank was in his US Military Extreme Cold Weather bag and had no complaints whatsoever.

    Rich was on a thin blue closed cell foam pad and in his Kelty 15F bag and reported no problems but a bit of condensation on the pad which dried each morning in the sun without problem.

    We ate really well (had boats - brought plenty of burgers, dogs, chicken, eggs, cast iron cooking equipment, coffee, sausages (you get the idea!). Cooked on an open fire - which there was plenty of wood for. We managed to split several downed trees into long logs using hatchets and wooden wedges - a lot of fun! No hiking food was consumed during this trip - everyone ate well and came home fatter (and happier) for it

    We spent some time hiking up to the ridge above our campsite - the view of the lake is really grand since the trees haven't bloomed fully yet - I hope to get back there later in the year and see the difference with total canopy. Stretched out some muscles that have been in dire need of hiking - I've got to get away from this computer more often and get out to do the things I REALLY enjoy...

    Our last morning there was windy so we were dreading the paddle back as the wind was right in our face. We dragged our feet getting things broken down since we were in no rush and as luck would have it by the time we hit the water the wind had died down. Once again it took us ~1 hour to get back to the dock and maybe another 1/2 hour to unload the boats, load the truck and get things secured for the trip home.

    I highly recommend this place to anyone in the NJ / PA /NY area who wants a great place to hang, paddle, hike and get away from the "majority".








    Last edited by XexorZ; 04-12-2010 at 10:46.
    Buy Tea at Jennifer's Tea Garden ( My Wife's Place )

  4. #4
    Senior Member XexorZ's Avatar
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    Perkolady:

    Didn't see much of the blooms that I can recall or find in pics - hopefully we'll be back before they lose their flower! - Thanks for the heads up though!!
    Buy Tea at Jennifer's Tea Garden ( My Wife's Place )

  5. #5
    Senior Member G.L.P.'s Avatar
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    looks like you had alot of fun ...thanks for sharing
    It puts the Underquilt on it's hammock ... It does this whenever it gets cold

  6. #6
    Senior Member Perkolady's Avatar
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    Thanks for the TR and photos! Always good to see RV again!

    It's a great place to hang- VERY rocky there. Glad you had a good time.

    Glad you were suited up too! Not a good situation if not. The water there never does warm up that much, even in summer.

    The pink dogwoods should be blooming in the next couple/few weeks or so. Also, up on that ridge trail... there are some rare and endangered wild flowers.

    I had an encounter with a bobcat down the far end once.

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