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Happy Halloween: Five Scary Creatures of the Deep

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Of all the scary monsters you see out and about on Halloween, there is very little representation of the creatures that inspire terror among sailors, divers and other ocean lovers.  Maybe it’s just too hard to make costumes of sea creatures, with their strange tentacles and fins!  Here are five real monsters of the deep that probably won’t come knocking on your door for treats, but may give you nightmares.  Happy Halloween, everyone!

1. Stone Fish.  You may remember that earlier this year, Gina stepped on a stonefish while surfing in Rincon.  What could be scarier than a fish that camouflages itself as a rock in shallow water and injects lethal poison upon contact? Here’s its cousin, the Reef Stonefish, in its natural habitat in the Indo-Pacific.

2. Giant Isopod. Not dangerous, but certainly very creepy! These can range in size from 7.5 to 14 inches and are carnivorous, scavenging for dead squid and whales. They can go for very long periods without food, and when they finally can grab a meal they tend to feast to the point of immobility.  Here’s a fascinating story about one giant isopod at the Toba Acquarium in Japan that refused to eat for five years. Read the rest of this entry »

Fall SUP at Paddle Diva

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Interested in exploring the natural diversity of our lovely East End? Paddle Diva’s distinguished tour guides, Mary Scheerer and Shari Hymes, lead SUP trips where you’ll discover the hidden wonders of our waterways.

Past Adventure Paddle Tours have included:

  • a tour of the Cartwright shoals, through Gardiners Bay along the bluffs all the way to Three Mile Harbor and Hands Creek Landing.
  • a paddle down the Peconic River, the longest river on Long Island. Read last week’s post for more!
  • a tour of Accabonac Harbor, including a leisurely loop around Wood Tick Island. Gardiner’s Bay boasts some of the most pristine shore line on the East End on Long Island.

These tours require a high level of expertise. Check out our website for more info and for schedule.

Autumn SUP at Paddle Diva: Peconic River Paddle

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Last Sunday, a group of hardy and dedicated Paddle Diva paddlers explored the Peconic River, Long Island’s largest and most ecologically diverse river. Winds were strong but at our backs, which made for a relaxing paddle. We were well protected and the gusts helped push us along.

The Peconic originates as swamps and bogs that flow eastward, widening into lakes here and there, for about fifteen miles before emptying into the bay.  We started our paddle at the Mill Road boat launch in Calverton, and participants were quickly challenged by having to portage their boards and make their way under a large culvert that runs under route 27, then another running under the Long Island Expressway.

peconic-river-paddle

Paddle Diva’s Mary Scheerer led the group through Peconic Lake and then along the Peconic Bog County Park. We spotted alewives, blue herons, kingfishers, lots of swans of varying ages — and saw quite a few freshwater clams, some quite large. Foliage along the banks is starting to change – reds and yellows and oranges, and we stopped for lunch in our usual spot, a set of stairs in the warm sun. Lunch for these river paddles always comes from Mary’s Marvelous – we swap halves with one another.  The group favorite was the spiced chicken breast with chipotle mayo, but the roast beef came in a close second!

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SUP Race to Benefit East Hampton Ocean Rescue

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This upcoming Saturday, October 11, a favorite Hamptons tradition takes place beginning at 9 a.m. at the Lazy Point Landing Ramp. Our friends at Main Beach Surf & Sport are once again hosting the annual SUP Race in support of Paddlers 4 Humanity and the East Hampton Volunteer Ocean Rescue squad. Registration begins at 7 a.m. the day of the race, or call Rick 631-537-2716. There’s a post-race barbeque party, too, so come down and join the fun.  Here’s a video of last year’s race – check out Paddle Diva’s Mary Scheerer at 1:53 doing what she does best – racing like the wind!

The race is open to all, but is best for experienced paddlers as it’s a six-mile, downwind course along the Hither Woods water trail (direction subject to wind conditions).  It’s all great fun, and the proceeds go to support two amazing organizations.

The EHVOR is a group of men and women who selflessly dedicate their time and skills to local organizations and events so that all Hamptons residents are safe and comfortable in the water.  These are the volunteers who respond to 911 dispatched emergencies year round in East Hampton, and run training programs for future lifeguards.  Many of Paddle Diva’s Summer staff members have been through the EHVOR Junior Ocean Lifeguard Program, and many go on to become members of EHVOR in order to serve our community.

P4H supports local and global organizations dedicated to bettering children’s lives.  They also provide support to local families in crisis though their East End Catastrophic Fund, and award scholarships to local students.  You can check out all the groups that benefit from P4H’s grants and contributions here.

September Catch-Up with the Bradleys

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After Labor Day, when my stand up paddleboarding clients go back to their city dwellings, I take about ten minutes to breathe and then I begin my off-season life.  In terms of the business, September is time to wind down daily offerings. We still offer stand up paddle tours, but the summer staff is gone and I start to focus my attention on things that help will grow Paddle Diva into a nationally recognized brand.

I’ll certainly keep you posted on any developments, but this post is more about what Fall means for me on a more personal level.  For most people, Summer means more time to spend with your kids – for me, it’s just the opposite.  

emma-horsebackBecause I am busy overseeing the daily operations of Paddle Diva, Summer means my kids are off on their own, busy with their individual activities and attended to and chauffeured around by their amazing nanny, Kathleen. It’s not until Fall that I can spend real quality time with them, and I’ve been doing just that!

Emma, my “mini-me,” is coming into her own as a great little horse woman!  Over the summer she spent time working at Stony Hill Stables, helping with the horses and even leading groups out on the trails.  Because the stables are so close to home, she can continue working and riding after school – and now I am free to go watch – from the ground.  I’m much more comfortable standing on a paddleboard than sitting on a horse!

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