iPhone dry bag update

I brought the OB dry bag on today’s kayaking trip and it worked well. I tried taking a few photos while the phone was in the bag and quality is definitely effected.

However it keeps my phone dry and that’s why I bought it. I’m going to give it an overall score of 4.5 out of 5. The last 1/2 point is for the slightly short cable and the loss of quality on photos, but it’s mostly for the cable. After all you can’t expect photos to look the same if shooting thru clear plastic!

Kayak trip # 3

We got the GMans boat officially wet today in Tully Lake. He was well able to handle it and once under way it glides through the water. We had a little head wind as we headed to one of the many island for a little exploration.

GMan under way.


Forgotten shoe on Blue Berry Island.


Jump off spot.


GMan explores the island.


GMans new ride.


Alaw and Tsunami SP.


GMan and me.


GMan crouching tiger.


Subi on main street Athol.


Blogging from The Athol House of Pizza

iPhone dry bag

For the last few weeks I’ve been researching dry bags for my iPhone. Do a search and you’ll find lots, but the choices narrow once you add the desire for full functionality and the ability to receive and make phone calls. Not that I want to be permanently plugged in, but I’m rather fond of my iPhone.

For me it came down to Seal Line and OB (Over Board). Both offered several models designed for iPhones with a variety of options.

For the Seal Line E-Case iSeries with phone jack (4 prong type) that allows full function of the phone via a head set. I picked it up in REI Reading MA for $34.95. At first glance it felt and looked good. Of the two this one is thicker and made of some form of fabric. It’s a little hard to get the phone into but the internal cord works well. Once the phone is in you can turn it on/off, work the volume buttons and the touch screen. I’m a little concerned with the seal but according to what I read and the package it’s good for 30 minutes in 1 meter of water. The seal itself is just like a fancy zip lock bag made from hard rubber.

Seal Line front


Seal Line back.


The OB on the other hand feel like a plastic bag but the seal at least seems much better. It has two locks (gray tabs in photo) that slide out to lock and in to open. The internal cord is attached to the very bottom of the bag as opposed to the back on the Seal Line model. However the OB cord is about a 1/2″ too short, or seems that way. You have to open the bag with one hand and fish around with the other to grab the cord. Then when you pull it up it stops right at the edge of the bag, so you need to open the bag extra wide to plug in the phone. The other issue is the cord can sometimes be right in front of the camera. On this one it seems to cover the back camera more than the front, but if you jiggle it around a bit the cord will move out of the way. Unlike the Seal Line the OB has a clear front and back, so I guess it makes no difference what way you put the phone in. The OB also has a 4 prong internal cord so I’m guessing that full phone capabilities are possible via a headset. I actually bought a water proof headset as the OB web site only mentioned listening and not talking via a headset. So I assumed that the internal cord was only 3 prong. In any event the quality on the ear buds is good and you can talk on the phone through the bag.

Cost for this unit was $29.95 for the bag and $24.95 for the head set. Also, forgot to mention the OB came with a carabiner and a neck lease. I figure the lease will be good for tying it off to my PFD or somewhere in the kayak.

OB front (and back)


‘s new ride

Over the weekend I bought the GMan his own Kayak, Wilderness System Tsunami SP. It’s a scaled down version of an adults kayak. Like they took a big one and put it through the shrinkie dink machine! Cant wait till we take it out for its maiden voyage.

Here’s a shot in our driveway.


Kayak trip # 2

I was feeling yesterday’s paddle and was on the fence about doing another one today. Since J and the boys are out of town my day is wide open. On the way out house to get my am fix at Starbucks I was still undecided.

I pull out my iPhone and opened “Launch Sites”. This is a neat app I downloaded a few weeks ago that lists kayak launch site and other general information. I hit “Nearby” and got all my local sites. I decided to expand my search so I did a search in Leominster. Several more came up and Tully Lake in Royalston looked interesting. The comments were good and it was only an hour and a bit out route 2, and I could hit SB’s in Leominster on the way by.

The ride was nice. You go just beyond where route 2 goes down to one lane and get off heading north for Athol/Royalston. Not sure sure how long the ride took as I was treating it like a Sunday drive. You go through Athol which has a small town feel and continue for twenty minutes or so. The area is well sign posted and you can camp next to the lake also. The Trustees of Reservations runs the camp grounds and the hiking trail which loops the lake, all 22 miles.

The boat launch is on the right and clearly marked but I continued down the road to check it the campgrounds. As I suspected it’s not opened yet, but the lot was full of cars. I circled back and parked at the landing. Unpacked, set up and pushed off. I went west, under the bridge and into the lake.


The lake is fairly large and dotted with many islands. The water had a little chop due to the wind but the sun was shining and it felt good. I paddled around for a bit and then pulled up on one of the larger islands. The lake has a 10 hp limit on motors so it was nice and quite. A few other paddlers drifted by but overall it was very light traffic.

Me and my Alaw Bach


The Alaw


I headed back toward the car only to discover a few of the many outlets, but I was in no rush so I didn’t mind taking the long way home. Back at the car I snacked up, chatted to a few fellow paddlers and then decided to head in other direction. Again it was smooth going and the first leg is more like a river, however Long Lake is at the end.


I went to where the lake opens up and decided to turn back. All in all it’s a great place for a paddle and the islands in Tully Lake would be fun to explore. I will be back with the GMan.


Blogging from Subway in Athol MA

Kayak trip # 1

Great day for a trip on river. The sun was out and winds were calm (most of the time!) I went with one of the other dads from GMans school. He’s a good sport and guide. We even spotted a bald eagle up close, very cool. We went north from 119 in Groton up to within sight of the dam. The Nashoba is a great river and such a nice resource right in area.

I’ll admit that I have not done a lot since snowboarding so I’m feeling the paddle, but it’s a good feeling.

Cheers DB….we’ll have to do it again.

First kayak trip

Tomorrow I’ll be getting the kayak wet for the first time this season. The weather should be nice and I’m only planning on getting the bottom wet! I packed the car tonight so I’ll be ready to go.