Monday, July 25, 2016

Thunder On The Bay

All I can say is wow, what a 4 day trip we had! It wasn't just the Poker Run boats, but all the support vessels and vehicles, plus boat enthusiasts everywhere. We had quite a head start when we arrived at Keewaydin State Park to launch the Sea Doo and THIS pulled in just ahead of us...

Aqua-Mania had TWO jet engines and sounded unbelievable. There was one other boat named My Way that has jet engines also. It has been clocked at 224 mph!

Then we saw this get launched at the small ramp by our motel...

The Alex Bay public docks were packed full of boats each night, along with onlookers and wanna-be's.

How about four outboards? We see this in Hope Town from time to time, but never up north. 

Three engines won't fit in line in this engine compartment, so they put one in front of the others.

 Need For Speed was a favorite. Some of the boats like this go over 100 mph.

 This looks like a carnival ride for nine people and probably feels like it!

These are for my brother...your ships have come in, and one had Daytona "written all over it."

How is this for support vehicles? Want to take the Ferrari for a ride?

The Poker Run itself was to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project. In fact they were looking for Wounded Warriors to ride with them, which must have been amazing. The start was led by a pace boat and the thunder from all that horsepower could be heard for miles....not to mention 4 jet engines taking off. It was too hard to get photos, so this is from the Poker Runs of America website. There were also a couple of helicopters taking photos and following the boats so we could tell where the racers were.

It was really quite confusing in the beginning, because not only were the participants lingering around tiny Alexandria Bay, but so were other go-fast boats not involved, a Coast Guard inflatable (who followed alongside the whole way), and police boats. PLUS before the race at 11, there was a Paddle for the Betterment of Alex Bay benefit starting at 9 AM! Dave and I were out for a leisurely kayak tour and discovered we were just ahead of the pack. We got out of the way when they caught up, but the chase boats kept trying to get us to go back and join. The last stragglers reached the beach just before the Poker Run started. It was wild. Dave and I were still out in our kayaks and almost got swamped by the big boat wakes. I didn't have my camera so here is a photo from Betterment's site from previous years. Now just picture 20 other 25-50ft. boats mixed in with the kayakers.

What a fantastic experience it all was and we will be doing it all over again in another couple of weeks when it's time for the wooden boats to all come out instead!

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