I put together a lemon cheesecake this morning. Yum! H says I need pictures on my blog. It would have been a good idea to take a picture of the cheesecake, but Thing One and I already cut into it.

After church, Thing One and I loaded up the boat. H could not shuttle us, so instead of a leisurely downstream paddle we planned on paddling upstream for a while before turning around and returning to our drop-in point.

We tried to put in at Hickories Park, but the boat launch area and the whole shoreline was too muddy.

Plan B: drop in nearby at the Town of Owego’s Marshland Road boat launch. This launch was no better.

Both of those boat launches have concrete ramps, but there was a ton of mud near the water’s edge. I don’t know if that is normal for this time of year (following the spring’s higher water) or a result of last year’s major flooding in the area.

Plan C: the Waterman Conservation Education Center’s boat launch, right next door. They did not have their docks in the water yet and the shore here was also very muddy.

Plan D: the next launch upstream in Apalachin. Finally, a clear ramp! Unfortunately, just upstream from this launch, the current gets pretty swift following a bend in the river. I was feeling yesterday’s ride and just didn’t have it in me to try to fight the current to get past this point, so we turned around and pulled the boat out of the water.

On the way home, we stopped at the launch at Grippen Park in Endicott just to see the condition of their boat launch. It was clear.

Thing One and I went canoeing once last year just before the flood in June. We never made it back on to the Susquehanna, mostly due to pollution and health concerns. After the flood, many of the sewage treatment plants long the river were shut down, resulting in a lot of untreated sewage getting dumped into the river. I can’t find references now, but I recall articles from late summer/early fall that still cautioned people about using the river for recreational purposes. At least one plant is still not fully back online. Fish deformities—yikes! And just a few days ago, a local paper urged people to take to the Susquehanna and other rivers in the region. (But I know nothing of this "cayaking" of which they speak.)

There you have it: boat launch conditions for five launches in the Tioga/Broome county area for May 6, 2007. Just what you were looking for, isn’t it?