Friday, October 4, 2013

Paddling in Pittsburgh 2

Paddling on the Three Rivers around Pittsburgh can be entirely delightful. And this past summer I have had plenty of opportunities to do so. Of course, before launching you have to pay attention of the flow speed. Beyond a certain speed it can become rather dicey as I found out on one occasion.

Though the flow of the Ohio seemed mighty fast as I launched I decided to give it a try and made decent progress until I reached the first bridge on the Allegheny. The water turbulence and vortices all around and behind the bridge foundations were a lot more than I felt comfortable with on a solo paddle. Not surprisingly the Kayak Pittsburgh Rental was closed for the day.

When in doubt I now check on-line before I head out. Recently I purchased a water proof camera and found that it also takes some decent short video clips when properly mounted on the front deck.

Paddling on the Allegheny down river toward town offers some excitement when power boats zoom past you leaving significant waves in their wake. For me cheap thrills is what I calls them :-)

As you get closer to town, the waves typically are more confused and agitated while they ricochet from the sides of the gradually narrowing river. Obviously, it pays to remain alert in an 18 foot long and 20 inch wide kayak, it makes for fast and fun paddling. So, don't get distracted by the roaring of power boats or the rumbling of the train crossing the bridge.

As you zoom past Pittsburgh's skyline you can already see the fountain at the point where the Allegheny joins the Monongahela to become the Ohio.

Once on the Ohio, a glance back toward town is a must. Here I paddle back toward the point, right along the line where Monongahela and Allegheny meet.

On September 27th 2013, Pittsburgh became the welcoming host of a very peculiar migratory fowl, a rubber duckling - about 40 feet tall. The critter will be here for a while and the town is abuzz! Needless to say, we had to meet this visitor in a fly-by greeting.

And we did  along Iris' rubber ducky and great crowds of duck-admiring 'burghers.