Yesterday there was a short notice trip starting at Kingsland Bay.
On the way there's a rail crossing with the red light blinking. A couple of cars are waiting... waiting.... waiting... no train. After a few minutes they start going forward one at a time, look both ways, and cross. Later I find out it had been blinking for at least a half hour. In a more populated area there also would have been a gate down.
I proceed, hoping I won't find the beach with a few cars and everybody gone. Not to worry, they are still there, along with a van/trailer load of kids from Middlebury (college) Mountain Club starting an intro to kayaking weekend.
Oops... Though I did make lunch, it somehow didn't get in the car, so I dump a few scoops of Gatorade in my water bottle, and Phelps says he has a couple extra bars and some apples I can have.
It's a nice fall day.. air and water both around 60, blue sky, color starting in the trees, and wind in the high teens to low 20's. Our route is pretty familiar, south almost to the Maritime Museum, cross over to Barn Rock on the New York side, lunch at the lean to a little north of that, then tack home on the increasing SE wind in a zig-zag route mixing some downwind waves with enough cross wind paddling so we DO end up back in Vermont instead of way north but still on the NY shore.
Conditions weren't what any of us would call challenging but the wind, color, and waves rolling under the nylon boat skin gave me the same sense stimulation I get from a scenic overlook on a fall hike. Fall's here, in your face, and you can't help but smile at it.