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STORY & PHOTO BY:  ROBERT STOPPER, LYONS

As Greg Dunning from Auckland, New Zealand hoisted his 17 foot kayak from the fast- rising Erie Canal waters in Lyons, NY on Friday evening June 7, 2013, he realized that his destination might be more than just a few days away. Greg left Manhattan on May 24. After exiting the Erie Canal, he plans to kayak across Lake Erie and eventually arrive in Detroit, Michigan sometime in mid- August.

Greg Dunning at Lyons' North Dock
Greg is no stranger to kayaking. According to Greg, “I have kayaked the Mississippi River, but right now, this Erie Canal is something else! Hopefully I am ahead of the hurricane!” According to Greg, “It has really been an adventure: I did not expect  the closed locks 7-17, the cross  wind on the Hudson River, and  the fierce, rain- driven wind and swells on Oneida lake. I usually paddle at a rate of 6 kilo (3.75mph), but because of the storm and sudden rise and swift current carrying all sorts of debris, I am only averaging about 4 kilo (2.5 mph) …. But is has been a great adventure so far! I look forward to going around each bend- everything along the canalway is so interesting”

Why the trip? Greg is on a mission. He is on a fund raising paddle for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease research.  His daughter is a Medical Researcher at Columbia University.

Like so many boaters and kayakers, Greg did not begin his trip of the Erie Canal without serious study. He has read and followed many boater blogs. One of the blogs that he followed was that of Glenn Charles and Richard Harpham.  Richard and Glenn were members of the “I Love New York” sponsored Spare Seat Kayak Expedition that paddled the Erie Canal just one year ago!


So- Greg lives in New Zealand. He learned much about the New York State Erie Canal by following a blog written by Richard and Glenn who live in England. As a kayaking  tourist travelling the  flooded waters of the Erie Canal through Wayne County, NY., he is writing a blog for his homeland  and the rest of the world to read- Publicity and Tourism at its best! Thanks Greg!  To follow Greg on his adventures, go to   http://mussel-man.blogspot.com/2013_06_01_archive.html

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