Happiness is

Happiness is the sound of an ice cream truck!



‘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.


Paracord Ball

I needed to secure a few items to my PFD so instead of just any old knot I looked up how to make a Paracord Ball or otherwise known as a Monkey’s Fist. The cord I used is 1/8″ and it took a few attempts to get the first one finished. The end result is about 5/8″ diameter.

End result.


With whistle.


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

Target Practice

Got down to the club yesterday for a little target practice. A friend of mine BR wanted to sight in his antique rifle. Its a 1938 Mosin-Nagant and is in fine shape for its age. I brought my M41 and Jungle Carbine in keeping to the same era as BR.

We set up in the rifle range at 50 yards. BD fired off a set of 5 while I pinged a target at the same range. We went cold and took a walk to see the results. BR was high and right. The high can be expected at his rifle is set up for 300 yards. He did the math on correcting the iron sights and out came the hammer and punch!

BR adjusting the front sight.


Here’s my results at 50 yards with the M41.


I wanted to see what my M41 could do at 100 yards so I moved my target. I also placed 4 clays on the back stop. Keep in mind this is a pistol with a 7″ barrel and I was shooting the cheapest ammo I have, bulk pack 36 grain.

Here’s what the target and clays look like from the firing line. Far left just next to the paper targets. Squint and you’ll see them!


To my surprise I managed to hit all 4 , mind you it took more than one shot per, but I got them. At 100 yards (that 300 feet) I needed to aim a full clay diameter above the clay I was aiming at in order to hit it.

Here’s the results.


Here’s my paper target at 100 yards.


Clearly an M41 is not designed for 100 yards but it good to know that it’s still possible.

After yet another adjustment on the Nagant (the first time we went in the wrong direction) BR rifle was hitting on target consistently. For a gun of its age I would still not like to be on the wrong end of the muzzle.

What’s a trip to the range without a little plinking on the pistol range. My favorite are empty shot gun hulls. Better yet if you place an empty brass inside it a nice weight to keep them upright. I plinked a few magazines and here’s the best one.


This was at about 15 feet. Clearly I nailed the hull dead center!


Blogging from Tully Lake Royalston 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.


The GMan had is first real 15 minutes of fame the other day. He had several lines in a school play. I was very impressed with his part and very proud also. The difference year over year is amazing. He was full of confidence and projected himself. We had no problem hearing him. Good job GMan.


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.