Sunday, September 3, 2017

107.7 Radio interview with Ela Ramsey aka Pearl Monroe - September 6, 2017

Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS). 

September 6, 2017 interview with Ela Ramsey aka "The Pearl Monroe" of WTPL 107.7 FM

Readers interested in more information in ORFS can contact The Chapin Center web site or the below telephone number
37 Pleasant St
New London, NH

I was thrilled to share my latest New Hampshire outdoor discovery with Pearl and her listeners. The below pictures and short videos will give you a taste of two of our Tuesday paddling encounters.

In July, my wife Catherine and I joined a most fascinating group of kayakers, hikers, and bicyclists, in the greater Lake Sunapee area. They call themselves Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS). And their mantra is “Make weekly outdoor exercise with us your joyful resolution. Join us each Tuesday at 10 am.”

I learned about ORFS from the monthly newsletter of the Kearsarge Council on Aging (COA) with headquarters located in New London, NH at the Chapin Center. The Kearsarge COA includes nine towns in Sullivan and Merrimack counties [Andover, Danbury, Grantham, Newbury, New London, Springfield, Sunapee, Sutton, and Wilmot]. The attendees at the Tuesday 10 am paddles and hikes are not limited to residency in these two counties.

Attendance at the Tuesday 10 am paddling and hiking welcomes all active paddlers and hikers 50 to 90-years young.

When someone says, “I am too old”, then they do not belong with my young friends and me!  

The ORFS monthly email schedule lists “every Tuesday” paddles and hikes on different lakes and ponds including lake descriptions and directions for our put-ins.  While there is no cost to join ORFS, you do need your own kayak (and paddles and life preservers).  Bring water for thirst when paddling, a small lunch for post paddling, and a small chair.

I do get asked if kayaking novices can come.  My quick response is no.  But, I would suggest if an interested person with no paddling experience wants to learn kayaking to attend the ORFS Tuesday paddles, they call the COA (603-526-6368) and ask if an ORFS member might give individual instruction to them.

Kayaking & Hiking
This summer ORFS paddled and hiked at nine lakes/rivers:
  •        Pleasant Lake (New London),
  •        Little Lake Sunapee (New London),
  •        Goose Pond (Canaan),
  •        Highland Lake (East Andover),
  •        Grafton Pond (Grafton).
  •        Lake Kolelemook (Springfield),
  •        Lake Sunapee (Sunapee)
  •        Otter Pond (Sunapee)
  •        Ompomysonsoosac River & Connecticut River - Norwich, VT.

When we paddled Little Lake Sunapee, it was so hot that we stopped paddling for a bit and went for a swim. We were certainly a motley group as some had “official bathing suits, and others went swimming in their street paddling clothes.  No matter, we all had a great time.

Attendees of these outdoor adventures come from all over the state including Vermont. As the weather changes the group does more hikes as well as snowshoe and cross-country skiing.

ORFS meets every Tuesday (year-round, weather permitting) to do an outdoor activity for two or more hours.  Their mantra is, “Make weekly outdoor exercise with us your joyful resolution. Join us each Tuesday at 10 am.”   

Kayaking and hiking occur at the same time with starts in the same area.  Our recent choice of sport has been kayaking.  When weather makes kayaking too cold we will start hiking.

AND there are two biking groups that ride every Thursday. One group pedals moderately and the other calls themselves “Slower Spokes for Older Folks”. Miles differ depending on the routes, but can sometimes exceed 20 miles.

As you know I am also a biker, and I plan to pedal with these cyclist in the fall.

Summary Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS)
The Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) group at the COA is made up of numerous high-energy seniors whose hiking, alpine and nordic skiing, kayaking and snowshoeing activities would put many younger persons to shame.  The ORFS is active throughout the year.

So, not only are Cathy and I getting outdoors regularly, we have a schedule planned for ever Tuesday throughout the year!!  No more excuses, “I wish I had known …”

“Make weekly outdoor exercise with us your joyful resolution. Join us each Tuesday at 10 am.”

You may ask, "Why have you not been biking?"  Well, my summer has been busy with other outdoor commitments.  I average running 3 days a week.  I have a 22’ single rowing scull, and I row another two days a week on Perkins Pond.  Plus, I am also an acitve member of the Lake Sunapee Rowing Club, and they have evening lessons for me to learn to progress in my single sculling technique. I also have an opportunity to improve my rowing skills in the doubles, quad, and eight-person (plus coxswain) boats.

[In rowing, the coxswain sits in either the bow or the stern of the boat (depending on the type of boat) while verbally and physically controlling the boat's steering, speed, timing and fluidity. The primary duty of a coxswain is to ensure the safety of those in the boat. In a race setting, the coxswain is tasked with motivating the crew as well as steering as straight a course as possible to minimize the distance to the finish line. Coxswains are also responsible for knowing proper rowing technique and running drills to improve technique.
A coxswain is the coach in the boat, in addition to following the orders of the team coach, the coxswain is connected to the way the boat feels, what's working, what needs to be changed, and how. A successful coxswain must keep track of the drill, time, pace, words of the coach, feel of the boat, direction of the boat, and safety. During a race, a coxswain is responsible for steering, calling the moves, and responding to the way the other boats are moving. Success depends on the physical and mental strength of the rowers, ability to respond to the environment, and the way in which the coxswain motivates the rowers, not only as individuals but as members of the crew. ]


I know there is only 7 days in a week.  However, my wife has become an avid golfer, and we have been playing golf nine holes about once a week.  I do take days off occasionally and I double up activities. Yesterday I rowed for an hour, and then we played nine holes of golf.

In July, I also learned the game of pickleball on a week’s visit to my nephew’s wedding in California.

[Pickleball is a racquet sport that combines elements of badmintontennis, and table tennis. T[wo, three, or four players use solid paddles made of wood or composite materials to hit a perforated polymer ball, similar to a wiffle ball, over a net. The sport shares features of other racquet sports, the dimensions and layout of a badminton court, and a net and rules similar to tennis, with a few modifications. Pickleball was invented in the mid 1960s as a children's backyard pastime but has become popular among adults as well.]

What is the difference between a lake and a pond?
Interestingly, I frequently get asked “What is the difference between a lake and a pond?”  As taken from the New Hampshire Environmental Fact Sheet:

The term "lake" or "pond" as part of a waterbody name is arbitrary and not based on any specific naming convention. In general, lakes tend to be larger and/or deeper than ponds, but numerous examples exist of "ponds" that are larger and deeper than "lakes." For example, Echo "Lake" in Conway is 14 acres in surface area with a maximum depth of 11 feet, while Island "Pond" in Derry is nearly 500 acres and 80 feet deep. Names for lakes and ponds generally originated from the early settlers living near them, and the use of the terms "lake" and "pond" was completely arbitrary. Many have changed names through the years, often changing from a pond to a lake with no change in size or depth. Often these changes in name were to make the area sound more attractive to perspective home buyers. Examples of ponds that are now called lakes include Mud Pond to Mirror Lake in Canaan, Mosquito Pond to Crystal Lake in Manchester and Dishwater Pond to Mirror Lake in Tuftonboro.


Rowing Blog Posts by OutdoorSteve

"Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"
    Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

    Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book will motivate friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. If you want 5 or more books signed, send Steve an email send Steve an email  and we can work out the logistics.

    Order books at:

    No comments:

    Post a Comment