Boat Season

Launch #1, Waterfront at Barnegat Bay near the Mantoloking Bridge

What is it with me and boat launches.

I don’t get it. Every time I go for a motorcycle ride and I decide to stop and take a picture, there’a a boat launch. Now understandably, I live near water, be it sea water or fresh water there always some of it within 5 minutes. Hell, if I walk out of my driveway and walk past 4 houses I’d end up in the Metedeconk River, which leads to the Barnegat Bay, which leads to the Atlantic Ocean. Now although I know they are there and I have found way more than I should know about. I always end up at one.

On this 50 mile ride after work and before the sunset…. I hit three, unintentionally. In my quest to just get a picture of the bike by a water feature, all three stops included a boat launch.

Launch #2, Manasquan Reservoir…. This looks strangely familiar

Since my riding style insists that I ride a loop, that loop took me along the ocean, along rivers and past lakes. I think that “Loop” mentality comes from my cycling. I don’t like “out-and-back” rides, they just seem like I’m saying “Okay, I went so far on this road and gave up, so I had to turn around”. I don’t give up or turn around, I keep going, which, admittedly, has back-fired waaaay too many times on me.

I was trying to be clever with my loop, I failed.

Launch #3, The other side of the Reservoir

I made a few turns in hopes that it would bring me to another vantage point on the reservoir and, well, boat launch. Just how many boat launches does a reservoir need anyway?

After snapping picture #3 I thought it best that I head home and if I should come across another water picture op I would take it, but the sun was setting and so were the temps. A few turns later, I realized I would be passing by Cousin Johnny’s house, lo’ and behold, he was outside so I stopped and had a conversation with him, albeit a little longer than I should have as the sun is now below the trees… and so are the temps.

I had three additional water photo ops and all three had a boat launch, so I passed them by. But now that I think about it, I should have stopped because at this point it was becoming somewhat of a game.

I started the ride with the temps at 75 degrees. One stop at the bicycle shop to pay for my new bike saddle, 3 boat launches and Cousin Johnny’s and now the temperature was below 60 and dropping. Originally my ride was going to take me down the coast to Island Beach State Park, across the route 37 bridge west to Lakehurst, Northwest into Jackson, East into Howell and then back home. But once I got along the ocean, the wind kicked up, and the temperature dipped into the upper 50’s. Had that not happened, it is likely there would not have been three boat launches in this blog.

The Jersey coast is relentless when it releases its hold on the cool evening temperatures, which can vary by 10 to 20 degrees, within a few miles of the ocean. It cares little for your enjoyment of the outdoors when the sun takes it’s warmth with it below the trees to the west. That natural air conditioning of that southern wind off the ocean, in the spring months will steer you inland seeking warmer temperatures. And when that happens…

…Boat launches.


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